Arkansas Easements, Eminent Domain, and Water Rights
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Wednesday, January 18, 2023
8:30 am – 4:15 pm CST (including a 60-min. break)
J. Cole Helfrich
Michael N. Shannon
Joseph W. Price II
Understanding Riparian Rights and Access to Surface Water
History and development of riparian rights
Determining access rights to use surface waters
Limitations on water use during shortages
Understanding Groundwater Rights
The right to use groundwater
Regulation of groundwater rights
Groundwater depletion and protection
Current issues in groundwater
Identifying, Classifying and Locating Easements
Creating easements: easements by necessity, easements by use, written easements
Identifying critical distinctions between easements in gross, easements appurtenant and prescriptive easements
Knowing when and how to terminate easements
Eminent Domain Law
Understanding eminent domain powers
• Source of eminent domain powers
• History of the exercise of eminent domain powers
• Types of eminent domain “takings”
Just compensation: valuing “taken” property
Participating in the Condemnation Process
Condemnation process for government use
Hearing and right of appeal
Valuing the property taken
Condemnation process for utility and other quasi-public use
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6.0 CLE Hours
Title Insurance Agents/Adjusters:
Continuing Education Credit Information
This webinar is open to the public and is designed to qualify for 6.0 PDHs for professional engineers and land surveyors in Arkansas.
This webinar has been reviewed and approved by the Arkansas Continuing Legal Education Board for 6.0 general CLE hours.
This webinar has been submitted to the Arkansas Insurance Department for review and accreditation, which is currently pending.
Visit this course listing at www.halfmoonseminars.org for updates on pending credits. Completion certificates will be awarded to participants who complete this event and earn a passing score (80%) on the quiz that follows the presentation (multiple attempts allowed).
Cole J. HelfrichPrincipal land surveyor with Craig R. Knoche & Associates, P.C.
Cole Helfrich has been principal land surveyor with Craig R. Knoche & Associates, P.C. in Geneva, IL, for the last 28 years. Mr. Helfrich first picked up a plumb bob in 1971 for Webster & Associates. From tape-and-transit to GPS, mortgage surveys to shopping centers, he has his seal on well over a billion dollars of commercial, residential and institutional developments and transactions in 22 counties in Illinois. Mr. Helfrich has enjoyed working with countless prominent developers, attorneys and other professionals in the field and the office. His specialties include real estate law; boundaries and boundary law; easements, rights-of-way and other encumbrances and servitudes; statutory and common-law plats; ALTA surveys; topography; building and site layout; construction- and project-management as well as land development consulting. Mr. Helfrich is a member of the National Society of Professional Surveyors and the Illinois Professional Land Surveyors Association.
Joseph W. Price II
Joseph W. Price II, Attorney
Mr. Price’s practice focuses on civil litigation. He has represented various clients in breach of contract, breach of warranty, negligence, products liability, fraud, defamation, Freedom of Information Act, Administrative Procedures Act, and OSHA matters. He is listed in The Best Lawyers in America® in Commercial Litigation, has been recognized as a Mid-South Super Lawyer in the area of Business Litigation by Super Lawyers and named to the 40 & Under Hot List and a Labor & Employment Star – South by Benchmark Litigation. Mr. Price was recognized as an emerging business leader in the 2021 “40 Under 40” list published by Arkansas Business. In 2014, Mr. Price was the recipient of the Young Lawyers Section Award of Excellence, which is given to a member of the Arkansas Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Section for outstanding service to the association and community.
In addition, Mr. Price represents both property owners and condemning authorities in eminent domain matters. Mr. Price represented a local authority in condemning numerous acres of urban property to expand school grounds and received judgments in favor of the local authority in each action that had to be filed. He has also successfully represented property owners in numerous condemnation lawsuits, retaining full-price judgments. Mr. Price has also represented citizens in front of local and state governmental bodies to prevent or delay controversial real estate projects. Mr. Price has worked with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Secret Service, and the United States Attorney’s Office to investigate and, ultimately, convict persons who were guilty of converting corporate assets for personal gain.
Mr. Price also coordinates and works with both state and local governments to pass legislation that benefits the citizens of Arkansas. Mr. Price drafted, worked with several legislators, and testified in front of the Arkansas Senate Judiciary Committee to pass Arkansas Code Annotated 27-67-317, which allows the Court to award costs, expenses, and reasonable attorney’s fees to property owners in eminent domain actions brought by the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department. Prior to this legislation, property owners were without recourse to recover these losses. Mr. Price also worked with the Arkansas Bar Association and Arkansas Legislature to help draft and pass legislation to protect minors.
A native of Dyersburg, Tennessee, Mr. Price moved to Little Rock in the summer of 2004 to attend the University of Arkansas at Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law. Prior to law school, Mr. Price attended the University of Tennessee at Martin where he earned his Bachelor of Science in History. In May of 2007, Mr. Price graduated with high honors from the William H. Bowen School of Law where he served as an Associate Editor of the University of Arkansas at Little Rock Law Review, as a Student Body Association Senator, and as a co-founder and Vice President of UALR’s chapter of the American Constitution Society. While in law school, Mr. Price clerked for the Arkansas Attorney General’s Office and the Honorable John S. Tanner, U.S. Representative for the Eighth District of Tennessee.
Mr. Price was admitted to practice in Arkansas in 2007. Mr. Price was also admitted to practice in the United States District Court for the Eastern and Western Districts of Arkansas and the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit in 2007. Mr. Price is a 2014 graduate of the Arkansas Bar Association’s Leadership Academy.
Michael N. Shannon
Michael N. Shannon, Attorney
Mr. Shannon has more than 30 years of experience in commercial and other litigation. His practice focuses primarily on complex commercial litigation, commercial eminent domain, class action defense, products liability, e-discovery issues, toxic tort litigation, medical malpractice defense, bid protests, and issues affecting the outdoor advertising industry.
A member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), Mr. Shannon is recognized by Super Lawyers in Business Litigation, listed with The Best Lawyers in America® in the areas of Bet-the-Company Litigation, Commercial Litigation, Eminent Domain and Condemnation Law, Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants, Personal Injury Litigation – Plaintiffs, Product Liability Litigation – Defendants, and Product Liability Litigation – Plaintiffs, and named Best Lawyers’ Little Rock Product Liability Litigation – Plaintiffs Lawyer of the Year in 2014, 2020, and 2023. He is recognized by Chambers USA’s Guide to America’s Leading Lawyers for Business in the area of General Commercial Litigation. He was selected for the inaugural Lawdragon 500 Leading Litigators in America guide in 2022. He is also recognized as a Local Litigation Star for Arkansas in Benchmark Litigation and has been named one of the Top 50 Super Lawyers in Arkansas by Super Lawyers. Mr. Shannon is rated AV Preeminent® by Martindale-Hubbell. In February 2012, he was named Super Mover by Arkansas Business, a weekly business publication.
Immediately after law school, Mr. Shannon worked for two years as a law clerk for the Honorable Stephen M. Reasoner, who served as Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas. A fifth-generation Arkansan, Mr. Shannon was admitted to practice in Arkansas in 1992 and in Missouri and Kansas in 1993.
Executive Director, Bayou Meto Water Management District
Edward Swaim has served as Executive Director of the Bayou Meto Water Management District since April of 2019. The district was formed in 1991 to provide irrigation water, flood control, and wildlife habitat to over 750,000 acres in Lonoke, Jefferson, Prairie, and Arkansas counties. The project involves multiple federal, state, local, and private partners, and is currently under construction.
Prior to working for Bayou Meto, Swaim had been chief of the Water Management Division of the Arkansas Natural Resources Commission since October of 2010. A major achievement during Swaim’s time in the job was involving over 1,000 citizens to update the Arkansas Water Plan. Since completing the plan update, implementation has included better water use reporting and data on groundwater use and availability, formulation of several watershed management plans to reduce nonpoint source pollution, creation of a statewide drought planning workgroup, and building better relationships between agencies and with the public.
Swaim was general counsel (2003 to 2010) and associate general counsel (1995 to 2001) for the commission and an Assistant Attorney General (2001 to 2003). All three positions with the Natural Resources Commission included legal, data, policy, and programmatic support for the Bayou Meto project and its companion to the east, the Grand Prairie Area Demonstration Project.
From 2001 to 2012, Swaim served as a Judge Advocate officer in the US Army Reserve. He is also a member of the Plum Bayou Irrigation District board of directors. Plum Bayou distributes Arkansas River water to over 14,000 acres of farmland near England, Arkansas. Swaim is from England, Arkansas in the Bayou Meto project area. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Hendrix College and a law degree from the University of Arkansas School of Law.