McWilliams Law offers Zoning and Planning Legal Services

August 1, 2016

2016 has been a seminal year thus far for representing developers and homeowners at several Zoning Boards across Massachusetts. Our recent clients include: a developer seeking approval for a cluster subdivision, a family of five wishing to add an nonconforming mudroom addition to their home, and the owner of a four family income property looking to add egress stairs within the property side yard setback. We have been able to successfully research, present, and negotiate with the jurisdictions having authority to move forward with each of these projects. 

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City of Quincy Solarize Massachusetts Program a Success

September 30, 2015

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed it's the only thing that ever has." -Margaret Mead

From November 2014 to September 2015, Attorney McWilliams served as the Lead volunteer and Solar Coach for the Solarize Quincy campaign. The program was sponsored by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, Department of Energy Resources, Quincy Climate Action Network, solar installer Solar Flair, and City of Quincy. The goal was to increase the number of photovoltaic panels installed on residences and businesses by at least 500 kilowatts.

The Solarize Quincy volunteers attended over 20 community events to collect signups and spread the word about the program. They also worked with the city to install Solarize banners on streetlights across the city, and host 10 "Solar 101" informational events to educate residents about the benefits of renewable energy. Quincy residents who already had solar panels on their homes hosted two separate  Solar Open House events to allow the public to tour their installations and ask questions about solar electricity. The City Planning Department assisted with social media outreach and translating written material into Chinese to ensure that all residents could benefit from the program.

Due to the dedication of the program volunteers and the popularity of the project, 622.33 kilowatts of solar power are under contract to be installed by the end of 2015, and 110 solar contracts were signed with new private solar owners. Because the program achieved over 600 kilowatts of solar power under contract, Solar Flair, the competitively selected solar installer, will be donating a 5 kilowatt solar system to a Quincy nonprofit this fall.

McWilliams Law Supports Winchendon Mill Redevelopment Project

September 2, 2015

Attorney McWilliams has been working with Central Massachusetts developers John and Amelia Giovanoni to obtain permits and grants for the redevelopment of the historic Whites Mill property. McWilliams Law is providing General Legal Counsel services for the 100,000 square foot mill complex is undergoing an aggressive two year renovation to house an indoor and outdoor greenhouse and hydroponic farm to grow vegetables. 

The program also includes thirty apartments of farm housing units, eight- luxury housing units, a farm-to-table restaurant and a brew pub. The 1800’s historic Post Office (which closed three years ago) will be restored and reopened. The Bell Tower will also be restored and 10 commercial office spaces will be offered. The Silver Lake Farm Transportation initiative, a non-profit, will also have offices and access to conference and an event hall.  The general store and recreational equipment sales and rental will be housed in a historic outbuilding.

The 57.49 acre facility will have a campground with 20 cabins including a pavilion for outdoor events. Hiking and bicycle trails will connect with Town and State Conservation Land that surrounds the Mill.  The 3 acre front lawn of the Mill will be used for local and cultural events as well as farmers markets.

The infrastructure of the Mill will be converted to a full carbon neutral facility.  Restoring and utilizing an existing hydroelectric generator, a 1 megawatt 5 acre photo voltaic solar farm and 5 Viessmann 2.5 MBTU (combined to 12.5 MBTU) modular biomass (wood chip and wood pellet) boiler heating system engineered and designed specifically for this facility.



McWilliams Law Featured by the American Bar Association

August 28, 2015

Our response to the American Bar Association's weekly poll was featured in their newsletter! We are supporting the BauBax professional travel jacket on KickStarter and appreciate the publicity for this great cause!

ABA JOURNAL - Top Stories of the Week, August 28, 2015

Question of The Week: Have you ever contributed to a crowdfunding venture?

Featured answer: "I am in the process of funding the BauBax travel jacket through KickStarter; funding closes Sept. 3. I travel internationally for work and this project has been on my wish list for years. Their jackets are the Swiss Army Knife of travel apparel with a detachable hood, pillow, built in gloves, waterproof iPhone pocket, and beautiful overall appearance. It is hard to find a jacket that works for the office and the plane, so this is a godsend!" 

~Rebecca McWilliams, McWilliams Law