John Lyons

John Lyons is an attorney who had practiced actively in the fields of land use, environmental and real estate since his admission to the bar in 1985.  Since co-founding Grant & Lyons, LLP, in 1994, he had completely dedicated his law practice to those fields.

For most of his career, he has represented a wide spectrum of clients having environmental and land use concerns, frequently representing municipalities, citizens groups and environmental and historic preservation organizations. He has long experience representing planning boards, town boards, and zoning boards of appeals on land use and environmental matters as well as representing private clients appearing before those boards. He appears regularly before other government agencies such as the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) and the New York State Department of State.

Mr. Lyons is particularly experienced in all facets of environmental reviews conducted pursuant to the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA).

From 2002 to 2009, he helped the City of Kingston Planning Board conduct a successful and widely praised SEQRA review of one of the largest proposed new residential developments in the State. In September of this year he will be part of a team making a presentation based on that project entitled “SEQR as a Vehicle for Planning” at the annual conference of the Upstate New York Chapter of the American Planning Association and the American Society of Landscape Architects.

In 2008, at the invitation of the Director of NYSDEC Region 3, he presented a lecture to NYSDEC staff entitled “SEQRA: Reconnecting with its Mission and Power”. In December of 2009, again at the invitation of NYSDEC, he appeared as a panelist before a NYSDEC Work Group to discuss ways to streamline the SEQRA review process.

He is also experienced in defending both governmental and private lawsuits brought pursuant to State and Federal superfund laws.  Mr. Lyons began his career as a litigator and had developed a broad range of litigation experience in connection with land use and environmental issues, and in particular with Article 78 proceedings.

Besides his land use and environmental law practices, Mr. Lyons has also maintained a significant real estate law practice of more than twenty years. He has represented buyers and sellers in both commercial and residential real estate transactions. He has represented individuals, commercial entities, developers, investors and estate owners. He has developed a network of contacts with other top-level professionals in related disciplines such as surveyors, engineers, structural inspectors and Realtors. Mr. Lyons is also a principal in his own real estate investment firm, Blackacre LLC.

Mr. Lyons is a cum laude graduate of Pace University School of Law, which is nationally recognized for its environmental law program.  While a student at Pace, he was a published member of the Law Review.  He is currently an officer of the New York State Bar Association’s Environmental Law Section, is Co-Chair of the Section’s Subcommittee on Solid Waste and sits on the Section’s Executive Committee.  Mr. Lyons is also the author of several articles on environmental law. To find out more, please see

Abstract- “Local Strategies to Prohibit Fracking; a Legal Toolbox for Local Self Determination”

Local Strategies to Prohibit Fracking; a Legal Toolbox for Local Self Determination

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