John Kolanz brings over 30 years of practice experience in environmental and natural resource law to Otis & Bedingfield, LLC. John spent the first eight years of his career in a large law firm setting. There he was part of a sophisticated environmental and natural resource practice where he counseled corporate clients on a broad range of regulatory compliance and permitting issues arising out of business operations, enforcement activities, and real estate transactions.
After leaving the large firm to come to Colorado, John worked as in-house counsel for the City of Greeley, where he continued his focus on environmental and natural resource issues. While at the City of Greeley, John established the Environmental and Water Resources Practice Group, which provides specialized in-house legal counsel to the Greeley Water and Sewer Department and its appointed board. John’s work for the City of Greeley included leading environmental permitting efforts on large water infrastructure projects.
John currently serves on the South Platte Basin Roundtable as a legislative appointee. The roundtables were established in 2005 by the Colorado Water for the 21st Century Act to facilitate discussions on water management issues and to encourage locally driven collaborative solutions to pressing water resource issues, including meeting future demand. John also sits on the Board of the Northern Colorado Legislative Alliance, which advocates for business interests in state and federal policy, legislation, and regulatory development. He is also a member of the Greeley Chamber of Commerce’s Local Government Business Affairs Committee.
John helps businesses, municipalities, non-profits, and individuals navigate the complex regulatory landscape and achieve their goals in a timely, efficient, and responsible manner. He has significant practice experience in virtually all the major environmental and natural resource statutory programs, including those addressing water quality, wetlands, drinking water, air quality, endangered species, hazardous wastes, hazardous substances, toxic substances, asbestos, and federal lands. John’s approach is to understand the goals of his client, and to help develop a strategy to achieve those goals.
The regulatory landscape is fluid, and can present a confusing mix of federal, state, and local requirements. Regulated entities must satisfy not only existing obligations, but also anticipate the impact of future requirements on their operations. Otis & Bedingfield, LLC can help you minimize exposure in transactions involving contaminated property, defend environmental enforcement matters, obtain environmental permits and authorizations, complete environmental cleanups, understand the regulatory implications of a business expansion or capital project, and stay abreast of regulatory developments crucial to your operations.
John received his Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture with High Distinction from the University of Kentucky, with a minor in agricultural economics. He then went on to graduate in the top 15% of his class at the University of Kentucky College of Law. A resident of Colorado since 1997, John and his family enjoy the Colorado outdoors and are all avid skiers, hikers, and fly fishermen.
Contact John A. Kolanz: (970) 473-2071 email@example.com
- Recent Supreme Court Ruling Raises Major Questions for Regulators and Businesses, BizWest, September 2022.
- What Is PFAS and Why Should I Care?, BizWest Thought Leaders column, March 2022.
- Why Colorado Should Evaluate Clean Water Act Section 404 Program Assumption, University of Colorado Environmental Law Journal, February 2022.
- What Is ESG and How Will It Fit Into The Biden Administration’s Environmental Agenda?, BizWest, January 2021.
- New EPA Memorandum Gives States Further Incentive to Consider Clean Water Act Section 404 Program Assumption, September 30th 2020
- WOTUS Whiplash, BizWest, April 2020.
- Clean Water Act Pitfalls for Moving Dirt, BizWest Thought Leaders column, January 2020.
- State Initiates Stakeholder Process to Clarify Asbestos Regulation, BizWest, November 2019.
- A Closer Look at Environmental Deregulation, BizWest, August 2019.
- Colorado Permitting Alert, BizWest Thought Leaders column, July 2019.
- IS IT SAFE TO ASSUME? A White Paper on State Assumption of Clean Water Act Section 404 Authority, December 10, 2018.
- Environmental Policy Change has Major Implications for Colorado, BizWest, November 2018.
- Are You The Controlling Type? BizWest Thought Leaders column, March 2018.
- Surprising Scope of Asbestos Regulation, BizWest Thought Leaders column, January 2018.
- Clean Water Rule: Review of the Clean Water Act Jurisdictional Rule and Considerations for Moving Forward. The Water Report 160 (2017): 1-31, June 15, 2017.
- Utah Rodent in Middle of Ideological Tug-Of-War, BizWest, May 2017.
- Should I look for Environmental Issues Prior to Completing My Real Estate Transaction? BizWest Thought Leaders column, November 2016.
- High Court’s Wetlands Opinion Could be Game Changer, BizWest, June 2016.
- Do I Need an Army Corps Permit? BizWest Thought Leaders column, March 2016.
- Texas Court’s Rejection of Endangered Species Act Listing Has Widespread Implications, BizWest, September 2015.
- New Federal Water Rule Taps Reservoir of Angst, BizWest, June 2015.
- National Association of Homebuilders v. Defenders of Wildlife: Implications Beyond Clean Water Act Section 402, 45 Rocky Mt. Min. L. Fdn. J. 37 (2008). (This article addresses Endangered Species Act Section 7 Consultation in the context of state assumption of Clean Water Act Section 404 program authority.)
- Tull v. United States: The Right to a Jury Trial in a Statutory Proceeding, Journal of Natural Resources & Environmental Law, Vol. 4, Issue 2, Article 6 (1989). (Admittedly dated – and written by a law student – but has new relevance due to opinions issued by the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in May 2022.) https://uknowledge.uky.edu/jnrel/vol4/iss2/6/
- John presented on Clean Water Act Jurisdiction at the Colorado Water Congress Summer Conference on September 15, 2020.
- John did a radio podcast for the Colorado Ag Water Alliance in July 2020 on Waters of the United States and the Clean Water Act. https://www.coagwater.org/resources.
- John presented on State Assumption of Clean Water Act Section 404 program authority to the Interbasin Compact Committee in March 2020, to the South Platte Basin Roundtable in April 2020, and to the Environmental Section of the Colorado Bar in May 2020.
- In February 2019, John presented on State Assumption of Clean Water Act Section 404 program authority and the Trump Administration’s proposed “Waters of the United States” replacement rule at the 2019 Ditch and Reservoir Company Alliance Annual Conference.
- In January 2019, John presented on State Assumption of Clean Water Act Section 404 program authority at the 2019 Colorado Water Congress Annual Convention Workshops.
- In February 2018, John presented on cooperative stream flow agreements at the Poudre River Forum.
- In October 2017, John presented on Clean Water Act Jurisdiction at the South Platte Forum.
- In June 2017, John presented on the Waters of the United States rulemaking at the Universities Council on Water Resources/National Institutes for Water Resources Annual Conference at Colorado State University.
- In July 2017, John presented on Environmental and Natural Resource Legal Considerations to the Larimer County Bar Association.
- In June 2016, John presented “The Clean Water Rule: Considerations for Moving Forward” at the Colorado Water Workshop in Gunnison.
- In April 2016, John presented “An Overview of Clean Water Act Section 404 Permitting” to the Colorado Stream Restoration Network.
- John was quoted in Andy McGlashen’s article “Watershed Moment,” in Audubon Magazine, November 22, 2021. https://www.audubon.org/news/ending-uncertainty-over-clean-water-rules-will-put-biden-officials-test
- John was quoted in Andy McGlashen’s December 12, 2018, article “Trump Administration Proposed Sweeping Rollback of Clean Water Act.” https://www.audubon.org/news/trump-administration-proposes-sweeping-rollback-clean-water-act
- John was quoted in Charles Schmidt’s August 2017 article, “Against the Stream: The Future of the Federal Clean Water Rule.” https://undark.org/article/clean-water-rule-epa-pruitt/