Local Government Use of Mediation for Resolution of Public Disputes
Hamline University School of Law
January 1, 1990
Urban Lawyer, Vol. 22, No. 2, p. 179, Spring 1990
Public disputes are difficult to resolve at best and often lead to serious conflict or protracted litigation. This article focuses on: (1) a discussion of the usual decision-making process followed by local city councils when confronted with public issues; (2) an introduction to the use of mediation for the resolution of public disputes: what it is, how to use it, and what its key advantages are; (3) an examination of two areas (redevelopment and halfway house proposals) as examples where mediation might be used to resolve very difficult public issues; and (4) a brief discussion of how to prepare for a mediation session. Its purpose is: (1) to de-mystify this ADR technique for those who have not yet been introduced to mediation at all; (2) to provide some specific guidance for parties and attorneys entering a mediation process; and (3) to advocate for a more widespread use of mediation in local government public disputes. The use of ADR, particularly focused in this article on the mediation option, can help planners, policymakers, and attorneys ensure that they craft the best solutions for complex public disputes.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 17
Keywords: Mediation, Alternative Dispute Resolution, ADR, public disputes, public interest law
Date posted: January 8, 2012