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Municipal Law News

March 11, 2021

In this issue:




The Pandemic Makes the Case for 5G Expansion

Alexander J. Thibodeau

This month marks the one year anniversary of the first COVID-19-based restrictions in Michigan. As vaccine distribution begins and we look forward to a return to normalcy, some of the ways we adapted to 2020 may stick around long after the virus is defeated. In the past year, we’ve traveled less but checked in on our loved ones more; we’ve given fewer hugs but we’ve developed better sterilization and hygiene practices; we’ve chosen not to gather in person, but we’ve gotten extremely good at connecting remotely.

Before the pandemic, we’d heard a lot about 5G small cell technology and the advancements it promised to make possible. Although most of us haven’t experienced those advancements first-hand, nearly all of us have changed the way we use technology—making those promises infinitely more important to our collective future than they were a year ago...

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   Alexander Thibodeau

Alexander J. Thibodeau

Thibodeau Email  Thibodeau Phone




Court of Appeals Holds Nuisance Claims Must Be Brought within Six Years

Kaitlyn E. Manley

A recent Michigan Court of Appeals decision applied a six-year statute of limitations to a township’s nuisance claim against property owners who were violating the zoning ordinance – even though the nuisance was ongoing. 

In Township of Fraser v Haney, Ruth and Harvey Haney began operating a piggery on their property in Fraser Township in 2006 in violation of the Township’s Zoning Code. The Haneys raised and cared for 20 domestic hogs on the property, which produced foul odors and attracted an excessive number of flies to the area, which was zoned for commercial use...

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   Kaitlyn Manley

Kaitlyn E. Manley

Kaitlyn Manley Email  Kaitlyn Manley Phone



   Gavel with Marijuana   

Update! Zoning Medical Marijuana Caregivers

Sarah J. Gabis

In another installment to the developing law surrounding medical marijuana caregiver regulation, the Michigan Court of Appeals has again ruled in favor of municipalities, reinforcing the principle that a municipality may regulate the location of this activity within its jurisdiction amidst an exploding marijuana cultivation market...

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Foster Swift to Participate at MTA Virtual Conference

April 19-21, 2021

For 20 years, Foster Swift attorneys have presented at the annual Michigan Township Association (MTA) Educational Conference & Expo.

This year's conference and expo will held entirely virtually featuring a schedule of shortened days filled with education, information and networking, while allowing for breaks in between. 

Don't forget to check out our Business Solutions Session on Tuesday, April 20 from 12:00-1:00 PM where a panel of Foster Swift attorneys will be available to discuss and answer questions on a number of timely topics Michigan townships are facing in 2021. More information and registration can be found at




Firm Welcomes Kaitlyn Manley to Municipal Practice Group

Foster Swift welcomed new associate Kaitlyn E. Manley in late 2020. A summer associate with the firm in 2019, Kaitlyn joins the municipal & public entity practice group in the firm's Grand Rapids office.

An alumna from the University of Iowa College of Law, prior to her summer associate position, Kaitlyn clerked for the Honorable Judge Michael Theile. Kaitlyn also interned for the U.S. House of Representatives.







Grand Rapids






St Joseph


Foster Swift Collins & Smith, PC E-Newsletters are intended for general information for our clients and friends. This newsletter highlights specific areas of law and is not legal advice. The reader should consult an attorney to determine how this information applies to any specific situation.

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