CLF Takes Defense of Boston Waterfront to Court

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Josh Block
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Says Baker Administration broke law by approving seaport development proposal

February 21, 2017 (BOSTON, MA) – Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) announced today that it has filed a lawsuit in the Suffolk County Superior Court against the Baker Administration for its approval of the South Boston Waterfront District Municipal Harbor Plan (MHP). The suit, which concerns actions by Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs Matthew Beaton and Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Martin Suuberg, alleges that the Commonwealth overstepped its legal authority by approving an amendment to the MHP excepting one private developer from laws designed to ensure Boston Harbor remains protected and that all waterfront developments serve proper public purposes.

“The Boston waterfront is a public treasure, an engine of tourism and a hub of economic growth, but it all collapses when we neglect our communal right to this resource,” said CLF senior counsel Peter Shelley. “The public has invested well over fifteen billion dollars in the harbor cleanup and waterfront improvements and has a protected privilege to enjoy the benefits of these investments. By approving a luxury residential scheme that essentially privatizes a public resource, the Baker Administration is corrupting a longstanding process designed to protect public interest. The minute we prioritize individual development goals over the public good, we start down a slippery slope that could spell disaster for our communities and our harbor.”

A copy of CLF’s lawsuit can be found here.

CLF experts are available for further comment.