Mr. Prentiss is one of the senior and respected
practitioners of environmental law in Rhode Island. He served
as Chief Legal Counsel to the Department of Environmental
Management (DEM) in the first years of the department’s
existence, working closely with Director W. Edward Wood in
organizing and implementing DEM’s regulatory authority
in all fields, including freshwater wetlands, and water and
air pollution. He was intimately involved in the drafting,
and the legislative process for enactment, of the Rhode Island
Hazardous Waste Management Act, R.I. Gen. Laws ch. 23-19.1.
He served as the Director’s designee on the Coastal
Resources Management Council (CRMC).
In private practice Mr. Prentiss has continued
to have a considerable involvement in environmental matters.
While he has represented numerous individuals and businesses
in applying for and obtaining environmental permits for a
wide variety of projects, the principal focus of Mr. Prentiss’s
environmental efforts has been representation of individuals
and organizations seeking to control development and resist
inappropriate construction and activity that would be deleterious
to the environment. He has represented most of Rhode Island’s
leading environmental organizations, including the Committee
for the Great Salt Pond, Narrow River Preservation Association,
Harbor Watch, Sakonnet Harbor Conservancy, Block Island Land
Trust, Sakonnet Preservation Association, Rhode Island Statewide
Coalition, and the Block Island Conservancy. Mr. Prentiss
was lead counsel for the objecting parties in the extensive
litigation regarding a proposal to expand Champlin’s
Marina on Block Island. In that case, the Rhode Island Supreme
Court recently reversed a superior court decision granting
the requested permit, in a decision that was a significant
victory for the parties Mr. Prentiss represented.