Patrick W. Krechowski



Patrick W. Krechowski is a Jacksonville Attorney, who joined Jimerson Birr in 2018 as Partner. He is currently the head of the firm’s Commercial Real Estate, Environmental and Land Use Law practice group, and serves concurrently as City Attorney for The City of Neptune Beach, Florida.  Originally hailing from Fayetteville, North Carolina, Patrick grew up in a traveling Air Force family, with homes throughout childhood in Germany, Alabama, Tampa and Hawaii. He has family roots in Jacksonville including San Marco, Ortega, and the Beaches and moved up from St. Augustine in 2007.

Patrick has over 20 years of experience in governmental, environmental, land use, real estate, appeals and title insurance law. He is Board Certified in City, County & Local Government Law by The Florida Bar. His thorough local government expertise includes oversight and defense of governing bodies and related board activities and decisions, land use litigation and appeals, environmental permitting and remediation, ordinance drafting and development, code enforcement litigation, budget oversight, contract negotiation, employment and collective bargaining and general representation of city government, including staff.

In addition to governmental law, Patrick’s practice focuses on environmental permitting (including sovereign submerged lands), environmental remediation, water use permitting and planning, zoning and land use (including medical marijuana dispensaries), beach nourishment projects, coastal construction and due diligence before local governments and federal/state agencies, including associated administrative and civil litigation.

Previous to joining Jimerson Birr, Patrick was Of Counsel at GrayRobinson in the Jacksonville Office. Before that role, he served as an in-house attorney for the Fortune 500 company Fidelity National Title Group, Inc., where he directly managed multi-jurisdictional title insurance claims litigation ranging in exposure from $10,000 to in excess of $10 million, including coverage and indemnity disputes, quality assurance and insurance regulations, complex litigation, settlement/mediation and recoupment. The position required frequent analysis of complex real estate and land use issues in resolution of title disputes.

Additional experience stems from Patrick’s past service as an Assistant Attorney General (criminal appeals) and Assistant General Counsel with both the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (coastal construction) and the St. Johns River Water Management District (environmental permitting and consumptive use). Further, Patrick has extensive public speaking and teaching experience and is a published contributing author to a book focused on international climate change.

Lastly, Patrick is a former adjunct professor with the Florida Coastal School of Law where he taught “Dredging & Marine Construction” and “Environmental Compliance” as part of the law school’s Logistics and Transportation LLM Program. For over 8 years Patrick taught Environmental Law, Ocean and Coastal Law and Environmental Law Practice and Procedure.

When not working at Jimerson Birr, Patrick enjoys quiet runs, relaxation and family time with his wife Jennifer, their children Maggie and Maxwell, as well as their 8 year-old Australian Shepherd. He is an avid fan of the Boston Red Sox, Florida State University Seminoles and Jacksonville Jaguars.

Bar and Court Admissions

  • Admitted to the The Florida Bar in 1998

Honors and Recognition

  • Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America© 2019, 2020

Education

  • Nova Southeastern University Shepard Broad Law Center, Juris Doctor
    • Dean’s List, Winter 1998
    • Participant in Environmental and Land Use Law Clinic, Winter 1998
  • Florida State University, Bachelor of Science

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  • Visit Jacksonville, Board of Directors
  • The Florida Bar Environmental and Land Use Law Section Executive Council
    • Secretary, 2017-2018
    • Treasurer, 2016-2017
    • Continuing Legal Education Committee, Chair 2016-2017
  • The Florida Bar Administrative Law Section
  • The Florida Bar City, County and Local Government Section
    • Board Certified, 2018
  • Florida League of Cities, Attorney Member
  • Urban Land Institute, North Florida
    • Member of the Year, 2018
    • Co-Chair, Technical Advisory Panel Committee
    • Co-Chair, Center For Leadership
    • Urban Plan, Volunteer
  • Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce, Trustee
  • Leadership Jacksonville, Class of 2017
    • Economic Growth & Preservation, Program Day Committee, 2018
  • Duval County Food Desert Public Policy Coalition, Member
  • Atlantic Beach Country Club, Member
    • Leadership Development Committee
  • JAX Alliance
    • Industry Affairs Committee
  • Georgia Environmental Conference 2019
    • Steering Committee
  • Member, Jax Urban Core Economic Development Forum

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Land Use and Zoning Law

  • Served as court-appointed Receiver for failing 250+ unit condominium association.  Matter involved city code compliance resolutions, collections, lien foreclosures, unit and building sales, construction permitting, property management disputes, various litigation against the defunct association, and creating viable association board for court-approved completion of receivership.
  • Represented an out-of-state developer looking to acquire multiple parcels along Florida’s major interstate interchanges for development of large retail operations with a focus on high visibility and trip generation.  Consultation services included identifying available and viable parcels, willingness of local governments to work with developer, due diligence, purchase and sale contract negotiation and review, lender contract generation and review, construction contract generation and review and seeking local government approvals.  Services also included introducing client concepts and product to state agencies and the Governor’s office.
  • Obtained federal court ruling that City of Jacksonville’s ban on placement and operation of charitable donation bins is unconstitutional.  Federal litigation involved emergency injunctive relief prohibiting enforcement of City’s legislative prohibition and bolstered client’s argument that its charitable operations are protected by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
  • Obtained state coastal armoring permit for St. Johns County condominium association that included 8 mid-rise buildings and private beach club.  Two plus year work included having the coastal property included in Florida Governor’s post Hurricane Matthew Emergency Order and authorization for installation of a 2,000+ feet rigid coastal armoring structure (seawall).
  • Obtained appellate ruling that local government’s determination that a non-conforming use was abandoned by private property owner.  Two plus year litigation spanned quasi-judicial hearings, circuit court appeal, and argument before the First District Court of Appeal.
  • Obtained appellate ruling that a local government planning board’s quasi-judicial decision to deny a special exception was proper.  Three plus year litigation involved claims of lack of competent substantial evidence, third-party standing, taking of property rights, Bert Harris Act claims (ancillary to main case), and failure to provide due process.  Ultimately, the First District Court of Appeal upheld the planning board’s quasi-judicial decision and determined that citizen-based testimony does constitute competent substantial evidence.
  • Negotiated and obtained emergency permitting approval for approximately 35+ homeowners in the Florida Panhandle directly impacted by Hurricanes Ivan and Dennis in 2004 and 2005.  Work included coordination with local, state and federal agencies involving coastal armoring, property rights, access agreements, species and habitat protection, and compliance/enforcement.  Five plus year work was ultimately concluded with adoption of site specific Florida Law.
  • Obtained local and state agency approvals for alcohol and liquor sales for southeast regional grocer, including package service, inside sales, inside service and food service.

Governmental Relations Law

  • Successfully defended a local government’s disciplinary action against a management-level member of the public safety department.  Case involved public records, evidence management, weapons and equipment management, improper conduct/insubordination and due process.  A successful determination was obtained through binding arbitration with the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service.

Environmental Law

  • Obtained brownfields designation and economic incentives for redevelopment of contaminated property pursuant to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Brownfields Redevelopment Act.  Incentives included sales tax rebates, job creation tax credits and remediation cost incentives totaling approximately $500,000.
  • Defended private property owner before state and local agencies over allegations of unpermitted impacts to protected species and habitat.  Matter involved installation of a permitted dune walkover structure on private property.  Settlement involved acknowledgement that property owner had acted appropriately and as authorized and that allegations of impacts to protected species and habitat were unsupported.
  • Obtained settlement and ultimate development approval for purchaser of private property that discovered past unauthorized wetland impacts to subject property.  Matter involved federal, state and local review of previous impacts, reduction of impact determination and approved mitigation resulting in buyer’s ability to proceed with development of 35+ acre tract immediately adjacent major interstate interchange.
  • On behalf of private coastal land-owners, worked with a county government, state and federal agencies to developed and implemented a county-wide Habitat Conservation Plan for marine turtles and their habitat that took into account the presence of and need for protection from frequent coastal storm events and historic impacts from major hurricane landfalls.

PRIOR RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE A SIMILAR OUTCOME

  • “Florida Brownfields: State & Federal Resources for 2019,” EnSafe Inc. Webinar, September 12, 2018
  • “’Contained-In’ for Brownfields: A Smart Approach to Managing Hazardous Waste,” 2017 Florida Brownfields Conference, October 1-4, 2017
  • “Lessons Learned from Hurricane Matthew,” Florida Chamber’s 31st Annual Environmental Permitting Summer School, Harbor Beach Marriott, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, July 14, 2017
  • “The Public Trust Doctrine; Waking a Sleeping Giant”, 18th Annual Northeast Florida Environmental Summit, Florida Coastal School of Law, Jacksonville, Florida, February 24, 2017
  • “Constant Change in Florida Land Use and Environmental Law,” The Florida Bar Environmental and Land Use Law Section CLE, Orlando, Florida, January 26, 2017
  • “The Right to Blight, Charitable Donation Bins, The 1st Amendment & Fighting Blight”, Environmental & Land Use Law Section Reporter, December 2016
  • “FDEP’s Emergency Notification Rule”, 2nd Southeast Brownfields Conference, Jacksonville, Florida, October 17, 2016
  • Presenter at the Annual Awards for Excellence Ceremony, Urban Land Institutes North Florida Council, Jacksonville, Florida, October 11, 2016
  • “Coastal Construction Control Line Permitting,” Florida Chamber 30th Annual Environmental Permitting Summer School, Marriott World Center, Orlando, Florida, July 19, 2016
  • “New, Different, Unusual & Uncertain – Environmental & Land Use Law Issues Facing All Floridians,” Environmental & Land Use Law Section CLE, January 28-29, 2016
  • “Coastal Construction and Beach Renourishment in the New Climate,” Climate Change Impacts on Ocean and Coastal Law: U.S. and International Perspectives, 2015
  • “Mechanics Lien Claims, Update, Cases & Defenses”, Reinsurance Committee Meeting, American Land Title Association Annual Meeting, 2013
  • “Coastal Construction,” Florida Chamber’s Environmental Permitting Summer School, Marco Island, Florida, 2007, 2008, 2012, 2013, and 2014
  • Co-Author, “Coastal Construction Treatise,” The Florida Bar Environmental & Land Use Law Section, 2011-present
  • “Beaches,” The Florida Bar’s Environmental & Land Use Law Section Annual Update, Amelia Island, Florida, 2009
  • Co-Chair, “Florida Coastal Law: The Rising Tide,” CLE International, Miami, Florida, June 2008
  • “The Walton County Experience: The ‘Process’ of Permitting Temporary Coastal Armoring,” American Shore and Beach Preservation Association, Galveston, Texas, 2007
  • “Compliance with Rules and Criteria of the St. Johns River Water Management District” and “Conservation Easements, Releases and Pitfalls,” Lorman Education Services, Jacksonville, Florida, 2007
  • The Florida Bar, Environmental & Land Use Law Section Webinar (2019) & The Florida Bar, Advanced Topics in Administrative Law (2019) – “Challenging and Defending Quasi-Judicial (Local Government) Decisions”
  • The Florida Chamber, Environmental Permitting Summer School (2019) – “Avoiding Public Hearing Pitfalls”
  • The Georgia Environmental Conference (2019) – Coastal Armoring & Hurricane Response in Florida (title subject to change)

April 2019

Partner Patrick W. Krechowski joins Dr. Leon Haley, Jr. and  Lindsay Hage with Melissa Ross to discuss the future of UF Health Jacksonville on WJCT First Coast Connect. Listen to the show here.

Partner Patrick W. Krechowski featured in Attorney At Law Magazine – First Coast Edition. To download and read the article, click here.

January 2019

Partner Patrick W. Krechowski receives the Urban Land Institute North Florida’s Member of the Year Award in the Jacksonville Financial News & Daily Record’s “In The Law” column. See the article here.

November 2018

Partner Patrick W. Krechowski listed in Leadership Jacksonville’s “The Lead Story.” See the listing here.

Partner Patrick W. Krechowski interviewed by Jacksonville Daily Record. Read the article here.

Partner Patrick W. Krechowski listed in Jacksonville Business Journal’s “People On The Move.” See the listing here.

Partner Patrick W. Krechowski quoted in Miami Herald article named: “A section of Miami Beach’s beachwalk was built on the dunes. Some say that’s a problem.” Read the article here.