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The Land Use and Sustainable Development Law Clinic has supported nonprofit and government clients since 2011. The Clinic’s core practice areas are real estate law, land use law, and planning with each evolving to meet client needs. This page highlights projects completed by the Clinic.

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Map: number of projects per county in West Virginia

(As of fall 2021)

Map of the number of projects by county in West Virginia, description below

Projects per county:

  • 1-5 projects: 28 counties
  • 6-10 projects: 6 counties
  • 11-20 projects: 6 counties
  • 21-30 projects: 5 counties
  • 31-40 projects: 3 counties
  • More than 40 projects: 3 counties
  • Zero projects: 4 counties

Comprehensive Plans

The Land Use Law Clinic began working on comprehensive plans with West Virginia communities in 2012 and has since assisted more than 30 communities with adopting a Chapter 8A compliant comprehensive plan.

Local Ordinances

With few West Virginia communities having the resources to expend on legal counsel to assist with the review, development, or adoption of basic local ordinances, the Land Use Law Clinic has supported over 40 communities in more than 60 local ordinances.

Real Estate Services & Negotiation

The Land Use Law Clinic assists land trust entities in acquiring conservation easements or ownership interests across West Virginia on properties with outstanding conservation values. In addition, the Land Use Law Clinics assist clients with real estate services related to farmland protection programs. In various contexts, real estate services are provided to local governments to properly identify ownership of real estate within their jurisdictions. Local government support of this nature has been for flood recovery and emergency management purposes, addressing dilapidated buildings, as well as for developing public recreation assets.

Project Management

The Land Use Law Clinic partners with federal, state, and local entities to develop and implement initiatives designed to improve the lives of West Virginians. These efforts have included projects related to flood recovery, floodplain safety, water quality, and wastewater management.

Appalachian Community Technical Assistance and Training Program (ACTAT)

The Land Use Law Clinic partnered with the West Virginia University College of Engineering and the National Environmental Services Center to provide customized, face-to-face training and technical assistance to small Appalachian communities burdened by inadequate water services. The ACTAT program has now expanded beyond West Virginia to also serve communities in Kentucky and Tennessee in partnership with the University of Kentucky’s Water Resources Research Institute and the University of Tennessee-Knoxville’s Hydraulics & Sedimentation Lab. The program is funded by the Rural Utilities Service, a division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development Program.