Practices

Intergovernmental Agreements

Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell attorneys are experienced in all stages of intergovernmental disputes, joint cooperation efforts, and agreements: from negotiations to drafting; from enactment to administration; and from enforcement to litigation.

Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell attorneys are well known for representing public entities in execution of some of the most prominent intergovernmental agreements in recent years, including the intergovernmental agreement that enabled Denver to build a new airport.  More recently, our attorneys were active in the negotiation that led to a major amendment of the original intergovernmental agreement (IGA) for Denver International Airport that would allow significantly increased non-aeronautical commercial development on the airport.

The Firm’s attorneys negotiated an intergovernmental agreement between the City of Cleveland and a nearby municipality that enabled the expansion of Cleveland Hopkins Airport and provided substantial economic development benefits for the municipality and the region.  Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell participated in the enforcement of a regional interstate compact for the disposal of low-level radioactive waste in the Southeastern United States and represented another interstate compact board in litigation defending the board’s authority in the Rocky Mountain region.  The Firm has also represented the Colorado Department of Transportation in negotiating an agreement with the City of Denver relating to funding a major highway project and related transportation improvements.

Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell has worked with special-purpose government agencies created by intergovernmental agreements.  Our clients include an agency created to purchase and manage parkland in the Santa Monica Mountains in and around Los Angeles, an airport authority created by Florida state law, an interstate compact created to dispose of low-level radioactive waste, and a multiple-municipality organization created to address airport expansion in the Pacific Northwest.

Intergovernmental disputes cannot always be solved through negotiation and agreement.  When cooperative arrangements break down, Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell is well equipped to litigate disputes.  Our attorneys have participated in precedent-setting cases involving the power and authority of conflicting governments, including Nebraska v. Wyoming, an original jurisdiction Supreme Court case involving allocation of the Platte River in those states; a case in Texas that defended the power of local governments to enact zoning that affected projects promoted by other local governments; and several state and federal court cases concerning conflicts between local governments regarding the expansion of the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport.