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The International Municipal Lawyers Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing the interests and education of local government lawyers.

IMLA champions the development of fair and realistic legal solutions, and assists members on the vast and cutting edge legal issues facing local government lawyers today.

Our successful CLE Events, expansive network of legal professionals, and our local government specific information channels make IMLA the essential organization for any advancing local government attorney.

Welcome to IMLA.

IMLA Today

PODCAST: IMLA 5 Things to Know for November 17th, 2017

PODCAST: IMLA 5 Things to Know for November 16th, 2017

IMLA Nominating Committee for 2017 Elections

Pursuant to the IMLA By-Laws, IMLA is announcing the 2017 Nominating Committee. The Committee encourages people interested in being nominated for Vacant Positions on the IMLA Board of Directors and for IMLA Regional Vice Presidents to make their interest known to the Committee. In addition to filling vacancies, the Committee is charged with nominating the Board's officers: including, Treasurer and President-elect. Some members of the board will be term limited and cannot seek reelection. As a result there will be a vacancy or vacancies open. It is IMLA's goal to have a Board that represents the organization's diversity of region, gender, race, age and ethnicity and the Board welcomes all who wish to serve. Unlike other non-profit boards, IMLA does not require board members to contribute money to the organization, but does seek persons who are interested in advancing its mission, increasing its membership and attendance at its programs.

The Nominating Committee is as follows. This year, the nominating process will be different in that the Nominating Committee will be conducting phone interviews PRIOR to the Annual Conference and will introduce its slate of nominees at its meeting at the Conference. It is important to hear of your interest as soon as possible to allow for the phone interviews to be set up. Our hope is to reduce the amount of time members must spend away from our educational programming and to thoroughly consider each applicant. In applying, the Committee hopes that you can offer the Committee an explanation about how you can advance the mission of IMLA and increase its membership and attendance as well as innovative ideas for advancing the interests of our membership.


Randy Van Vleck
General Counsel
New Mexico Municipal League
P.O. Box 846
Santa Fe, NM 87504
Phone: (505) 982-5573
Fax: (505) 984-1392 
Alan Bojorquez
Bojorquez Law Firm PLLC
12325 Hymeadow Drive
Suite 2-100
Austin, TX 78750
Phone: (512) 250-0411 
Robert S. Croom
Deputy General Counsel
South Carolina Association of Counties
PO Box 8207
Columbia, SC 29202-8207
Phone: (803) 252-7255  
 Kim Hibbard
General Counsel
North Carolina League of Municipalities
308 W. Jones Street
Raleigh, NC 27603
Phone: (919) 715-3936 
Mr. Byron Werry
City Solicitor
Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
City Hall
P.O. Box 1790
Regina, SK S4P 3C8
Phone: (306) 777-7989
Fax: (306) 777-6818 

The Nominating Committee is charged with trying to find candidates that will work to increase the value of IMLA to its members, strengthen the organization and ensure the diversity of the board.

IMLA Regional Vice Presidents are also selected by the Nominating Committee and it has been our practice in the past to nominate the current Regional Vice Presidents unless there is a vacancy.

The current copy of the amended By-Laws can be found on IMLA's web site at and the By-Laws describe the qualifications for service on the board or other office.

The Board of Directors hopes that all interested members will apply.

Supporting Home Rule

Regardless of which side in the political debates you take, IMLA strongly supports Home Rule for local government and the attendant autonomy it provides local governments to develop local policies to solve local problems. In the near future, we will discuss this issue and our goals in more detail, but for now we urge you to support local governments and avoid adopting policies that hurt them. For example, travel bans to states that adopt preemptive policies can harm communities that are aligned not with their state legislatures but with other communities committed to solving the most complex problems local governments face. Our Annual Conference heads to Houston next year and that great city and other Texas cities are now fighting a difficult battle with a legislature that does not respect their concerns. We want to support our Texas cities and counties in allowing them the right to make decisions for the betterment of their communities regardless of which way their self-determination leads. We ask that you do so too by helping IMLA in its amicus efforts and in refraining from adopting policies that hurt local governments.

IMLA Member, Gunnar Johnson, to run Iditarod!

Duluth City Attorney, Gunnar Johnson, will take part in the 1,000-plus mile Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race! IMLA wishes Gunnar the best of luck in this extraordinary journey! 

CLICK HERE to read more. CLICK HERE for race information, updates, checkpoints, and more.

IMLA's 2016 Local Government Attorney Compensation Report is NOW AVAILABLE*

The 2016 Compensation Report is the result of a data intensive project where IMLA asked local government lawyers to fill out an online survey regarding local government attorney salaries. We received over 300 usable responses from local government attorneys, and the Report, released in January 2017, includes approximately 85 pages of data and analysis. It includes salary data for 26 job classifications, including both attorney and support staff positions.

The cost is $199 for IMLA members who did not take the survey and $499 for nonmembers who did not complete the survey. CLICK HERE to download your order form and then fax your completed form to us at (202) 785-0152 or e-mail the form to us at

If you took the survey and completed it, you should have received a link to the survey already. If you took the survey and did not receive the Report, please e-mail and provide the name and e-mail address used to complete the survey.

* Available in digital PDF only- no hard copies.

**Note that, as indicated in the instructions for the survey, only those who completed the entire survey are eligible to receive a copy of the report for free.

IMLA 81st Annual Conference: San Diego, California

Couldn't make it to the Annual Conference in San Diego, check out what you missed! Don't miss out next year, register for the 82nd Annual Conference today! #Niagara2017Canada

IMLA's 81st Annual Conference- San Diego by Slidely Slideshow



Bank of America v. City of Miami

The IMLA staff with Joel Liberson, Counsel on Bank of America v. Cit of Miami case.

 Staff SCOTUS1

(Caitlin Cutchin, Erich Eiselt, Joel Liberson, Amanda Kellar)

Bank of America v. City of Miami is a Fair Housing Act (FHA) case that raises the following questions: (1) Whether, by limiting suit to “aggrieved person[s],” Congress required that a Fair Housing Act plaintiff plead more than just Article III injury-in-fact; and (2) whether proximate cause requires more than just the possibility that a defendant could have foreseen that the remote plaintiff might ultimately lose money through some theoretical chain of contingencies.

In this case, the city of Miami brought a claim under the FHA against Bank of America and Wells Fargo, alleging that they engaged in a decade-long pattern of discriminatory lending in the residential housing market that caused the City economic harm. The City claims that the banks targeted black and Latino customers in Miami for predatory loans that carried more risk, steeper fees, and higher costs than those offered to identically situated white customers, and created internal incentive structures that encouraged employees to provide these types of loans. The City alleged that by steering minorities toward these predatory loans, the banks caused minority-owned properties throughout Miami to fall into unnecessary or premature foreclosure, depriving the City of tax revenue as property values decreased and also simultaneously forcing the City to spend more on municipal services such as police, firefighters, trash and debris removal, etc., to combat the resulting blight.

The Eleventh Circuit reversed the district court’s decision to dismiss the City’s complaint, concluding that the City has constitutional standing to pursue its FHA claims. The Supreme Court heard oral argument on this case today and will ultimately decide whether the city has standing to sue the banks over these practices.


By Robert Doty.

Well-known to securities law practitioners and a frequent lecturer at IMLA events, Robert Doty is a Harvard Law School graduate and veteran of more than 40 years in the municipal securities market as bond counsel, underwriter counsel, investor counsel, and advisor to issuers and underwriters. He is the author of two books and numerous articles on municipal securities law. He has now written the dispositive account of the SEC's decisive foray into local government securities and the new environment for municipal issuers, published by IMLA.
As EXPANDING MUNICIPAL SECURITIES ENFORCEMENT details, since 2013, federal scrutiny of municipal bonds has dramatically accelerated. Fines and other sanctions are now being imposed by the SEC against a wide swathe of local governments and officials. City and county officials now have unavoidable responsibility to read and stand behind bond disclosures.
Mr. Doty details the rapid proliferation of SEC complaints against local governments, with specifics of each case -- including recent actions where the Department of Justice has joined the enforcement process, bringing criminal charges against local officials, including a municipal attorney. He also explains the SEC's Municipal Continuing Disclosure Cooperation (MCDC) initiative, which allowed municipalities to reduce sanctions based on voluntary disclosure of past violations. His book includes a comprehensive hypothetical designed for self-study.

Click here to view the order form and purchase the book.

IMLA Nominating Committee and Vacancies

Pursuant to the IMLA By-Laws, IMLA is announcing the 2016 Nominating Committee. The Committee encourages people interested in being nominated for Vacant Positions on the IMLA Board of Directors and for IMLA Regional Vice Presidents to make their interest known to the Committee. In addition to filling vacancies, the Committee is charged with nominating the Board's officers: including, Treasurer and President-elect. Some members of the board will be term limited and cannot seek reelection. As a result there will be several vacancies open. It is IMLA's goal to have a Board that represents the organization's diversity of region, gender, race, age and ethnicity and the Board welcomes all who wish to serve. Unlike other non-profit boards, IMLA does not require board members to contribute money to the organization, but does seek persons who are interested in advancing its mission, increasing its membership and attendance at its programs.

The Nominating Committee is as follows and will be meeting during the San Diego Annual Conference at the Hilton Bayfront Hotel at a date and time to be announced. PLEASE CONTACT THE COMMITTEE IN ADVANCE AND PLAN TO ATTEND THE MEETING IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN SUBMITTING YOUR NAME OR THE NAME OF ANOTHER MEMBER FOR NOMINATION:

Robert S. Croom
Deputy General Counsel, South Carolina Association of Counties
PO Box 8207
Columbia, SC 29202-8207
Phone: (803) 252-7255

Anthony Fox
Town Attorney, Weddington, North Carolina
Three Wachovia Cntr
401 S. Tryon Street, Ste. 3000
Charlotte, NC 28202
Phone: (704) 372-9000

Randall Van Vleck
General Counsel, New Mexico Municipal League
PO Box 846
Santa Fe, NM 87504
Phone: (505) 982-5573

Ms. JoAngela Woods
General Counsel, Indiana Association of Cities & Towns
Station Place 200 S. Meridian St. Ste. 340
Indianapolis, IN 46225
Phone: (317) 237-6200
Fax: (317) 237-6206

Mr. Byron Werry
City Solicitor
Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
City Hall P.O. Box 1790
Regina, SK S4P 3C8 Canada
Phone: (306) 777-7989
Fax: (306) 777-6818

IMLA Finalizes City-County Attorney Model Retainer Agreement!

For Local Governments that use outside counsel as their chief legal officer, IMLA has developed a model retainer agreement. CLICK HERE to view the model retainer agreement.

A Model Act for Regulating The Use of Wearable Body Cameras by Law Enforcement

IMLA developed a Model for Body Worn Camera Legislation that is available on the IMLA website and through the link below. This Model recognizes that many communities wish to adopt body worn camera programs and provides a model for state legislatures to adopt to allow municipalities and counties voluntarily to adopt those programs. The Model recognizes that state public record retention, public information and wiretapping laws may all interfere with the adoption of a body worn camera program. Each state should consider carefully the multiple issues that are involved and each community should consider the extraordinary costs of implementing a program. This Model helps to limit those costs while making body worn cameras a useful tool for communities.

CLICK HERE to read the Model.

 IMLA 2016 Seminar

IMLA is back in Washington, D.C. for the 2016 Mid-Year Seminar at the Omni Shoreham Hotel. Not only will the Seminar be filled with regular programming with cutting edge topics and quality speakers, but it will also feature a separate Section 1983- Defending the Government Program!

Regular Program Highlight: When is a Lawyer Entitled to Overtime?

IMLA Seminar - The FLSA
Yesterday, the 2nd Circuit decided that a contract lawyer might be entitled to overtime under the FLSA in Lola v. Skadden, Arps ( IMLA Seminar in Washington, DC April 15 to April 18, 2016 at the Omni Shoreham, will discuss this case and other FLSA issues. From raising the salary levels to distinguish between exempt and non-exempt employees to distinguishing between employees and independent contractors the Wage and Hour Division is on a tear. Find out how the FLSA affects your clients. The Seminar will include other topical programs so stay tuned for updates on the most important issues in local government law today.

Sneak Peek: IMLA Section 1983 Program - Defending Local Governments

IMLA is pleased to offer a sneak preview of the IMLA Section 1983 program which will be a separate track at the IMLA Seminar in April. Rooms at the Omni will be tight, so go on-line now and make your reservations. Our room block is not yet open but if you can get room rates less than $225 per night you'll be doing better than you can through the block. Check out the tentative program for the Section 1983 Program, HERE.

CLICK HERE to register for the 2016 Mid-Year Seminar.

 Employment Agreement for In-house Counsel

IMLA focuses on achieving excellence in local governance by advocating on behalf of local governments in the courts and by advancing the professionalism of local government lawyers. IMLA, the International Municipal Lawyers Association, provides member support; publications, data, and information; amicus assistance; and training and professional development to its members from local governments represented by outside counsel to local governments represented by from just one to over 700 attorneys. Elected leaders and appointed officials in thousands of communities ranging from small villages to the largest cities in the United States and Canada rely on IMLA trained attorneys for legal services and advice. IMLA members are cities, counties, special districts and other local governments who are served through their chief legal officers.

IMLA gratefully acknowledges the work of its Committee whose members worked diligently to put this model contract together. We thank:

Marion J. Radson, Esq., Chair, City Attorney (retired), Gainesville, Florida
Thomas M. Carpenter, Esq., City Attorney, Little Rock, Arkansas
Thomas Carr, Esq., City Attorney, Boulder, Colorado
Howard Friedman, Esq. Chief, Contracts and Real Estate
New York City Law Department

CLICK HERE to read the Employment Agreement for In-House Counsel

 ATTENTION MEMBERS: Need to hire outside Counsel?? USE IMLA's CONTACT BOOK!!

IMLA Associate Members generally consist of our solo/firm members in private practice who are often retained as outside counsel by our municipal law department members. IMLA has worked with Associate Members to put together the 2015 Associate Member Digital Contact Book so that you can easily find additional legal assistance through IMLA's extensive network of experienced professionals. If you find yourself needing advice in certain areas of municipal law, utilize this contact book to find the legal assistance you need!

IMLA is working on the website to make the contact book user friendly and searchable but for now, the Contact Book link can be found HERE!

Not in the contact book? Contact Julie Ruhe at

 2016: Kitchen Sink Program

 Sign up Today to Train Your Whole Office and Get CLE Credit Through IMLA’s Distance Learning Programs

In order to provide great benefits to our members, IMLA has continued to keep the Kitchen Sink subscription to only $499 for the year (until 1/1/16). One subscription to the “Kitchen Sink” will provide your entire office with at least FORTY (40) distance learning programs, for all of its *CLE needs from January 2016 - December 2016!  If you sign up now, you will have access  to all the recordings from this year, plus access to all the live broadcasting from IMLA’s seminar and conference.

In 2016, we will continue to bring you the same high quality programs and offer CLE accreditations for qualifying participants via both teleconferences and webinars. Some examples of topics that will be included in 2016 include both staples to your practice like Land Use, Personnel, Municipal Finance and Ethics, as well as cutting edge topics like Medical Marijuana, Drones, and Body Worn Cameras.

Please note that there is no limit on the number of people that listen through your kitchen sink pass, but you can only use ONE connection per Pass. If you have more than one person listening in to any call/webinar, we recommend you set up in a conference room with a computer and/or speakerphone.

* CLE not included in price

To sign up, CLICK HERE.

IMLA’s 2016 Webinars/Teleconferences

Member Benefit for 2016 – 10 Free Webinars/Teleconferences 

In 2016, IMLA will continue to have the low pricing for its webinars and teleconferences. Additionally, we are still offering ten (10) FREE* distance learning programs for IMLA members. CLICK HERE to view the 2016 Distance Learning Calendar.


Single Teleconference/Webinar (Member Rate) --------------------------------------$49
Single Teleconference/Webinar (Non-Member Rate) -------------------------$99-$149
Annual “Kitchen Sink” Subscription (Members Rate) -------------------------------$499 (until 1/1/16. After 1/1/16 it is $599) 
Annual “Kitchen Sink” Subscription (Non-Members Rate) -----------------------$1,999 (until 1/1/16. After 1/1/16 it is $2099)
Special Series Rate for Land Use (Member Rate) -------------------------------------$199
Special Series Rate for Personnel (Member Rate) ------------------------------------$199

To learn more about IMLA’s distance learning program for 2016 CLICK HERE

**Limited availability. IMLA will choose the free programming and will let members know in advance so that they may plan accordingly.




2018 IMLA's Mid-Year Seminar; Washington, D.C.; April 20-23, 2018

CLICK HERE for more information

Click here to the BUNDLE DEAL!!! Attend the 2018 Seminar and Conference for 1 GREAT PRICE!!


IMLA’s 82nd Annual Conference; Niagara Falls, Canada; October 14-18, 2017

CLICK HERE for more information

IMLA’s 83rd Annual Conference; Houston, Texas; October 17-21, 2018

Information forthcoming

Houston logo


CLICK HERE to see the 2016 webinar calendar. 

CLICK HERE to read about our Kitchen Sink program.


Member News

IMLA's President Elect, Mary Ellen Bench Receives the 2016 Osgoode Hall Law School Gold Key Award

Mary Ellen Bench, IMLA's President-Elect was the recipient of the 2016 Osgoode Hall Law School Gold Key Award in the Public Sector Category. The awards honors outstanding Osgoode alumni for their exceptional professional achievements and significant contributions to the Law School and the community. Congratulations, Mary Ellen!CLICK HERE to read more.

IMLA's President, Herbert Thiele, Receives the H. Hamilton "Chip" Rice" , Jr., Award 

IMLA' President, Herb Thiele, was presented with the H. Hamilton "Chip" Rice, Jr., Award. The award recognizes a distinguished lawyer who has served the Florida Bar's Local Government Law Section by mentoring and educating future lawyers in this field. Congratulations, Herb!CLICK HERE to read more.


IMLA To Recognize Amicus Recipients

IMLA would like to recognize the Amicus Award recipients for their service to IMLA's Legal Advocacy program at the upcoming Mid-Year Seminar.

2016 Amicus Award Recipients
The Amicus Service Award seeks to recognize the authors of IMLA's amicus briefs in the last year. These recipients drafted an amicus brief for IMLA on a pro bono basis, donating their valuable time and expertise to the legal advocacy program. Without their valuable service, IMLA would not be able to sustain it.

IMLA will be recognizing these thirty-six attorney's at the Mid-Year Seminar in Washington D.C. on April 15 at 5:00 PM. Please come and support your fellow colleagues for their dedication to advance the interests of local government!

CLICK HEREto view the Press Release.

 IMLA Member RecognizedMcGannon Pic

Longtime IMLA Member Susan McGannon was recently awarded the Distinguished Municipal Attorney Award given by the Tennessee Municipal Attorneys Association. Susan is the first recipient of this award. Congratulation Susan!

CLICK HERE to read more.

NEWS RELEASE: November 30, 2015

Three Local Leaders at the Top of Their Games
Leon County Commissioner, Administrator, and Attorney
lead respective professional organizations

In the past year, three Leon County Government officials have earned leadership roles in statewide, national, and international professional organizations.

Through hard work and excellent leadership, Leon County Commissioner Bryan Desloge, Leon County Administrator Vincent S. Long, and Leon County Attorney Herbert W.A. Thiele now look forward to representing Leon County on a larger stage through their professional organizations. Such efforts will not only showcase the Capital County’s successes, but also lead to idea exchanges to further improve the community.

“The Board, as well as the citizens of Leon County, are very fortunate to have three local leaders at the top of their professional fields,” said Leon County Commission Chairman Bill Proctor. “We usually count ourselves lucky to have one person representing the good work that is happening in Leon County; it’s unprecedented to have three officials leading their peers and setting new standards in public service.”

In November 2014, Leon County Administrator Vincent S. Long was elected President-elect of the newly-formed Florida Association of County Managers (FACM), Inc. A proven leader, dedicated public servant and accomplished professional public manager, Mr. Long was selected from among more than 60 county administrators and managers to serve in the leadership post. Since becoming Leon County Administrator in 2011, he was selected to serve on the Board of Directors for Leadership Florida and has received national, state, and local recognition for his leadership, transparency in government, citizen participation, and fiscal stewardship.

After being elected President-Elect of the International Municipal Lawyers Association (IMLA) in 2014, Leon County Attorney Herbert W.A. Thiele now serves as the association’s President. Mr. Thiele has served as in-house counsel for Leon County Government since 1990. Thiele is the first-ever county attorney to be President of IMLA. In addition to serving on IMLA’s Board and Florida Association of County Attorneys’ (FACA) Board for several years and having served as FACA’s President on four different occasions, Thiele received FACA’s Ethics in Government Award in 1998 and 2001, as well as the FACA President’s Award in 2004 in recognition of his outstanding service and dedication to the organization. Mr. Thiele also served as Chairman of the Florida Bar’s City, County and Local Government Law Section.

To learn more about these local leaders and the organizations they represent, visit .

For more information, contact Mathieu Cavell, Director of Leon County Community and Media Relations, at (850) 606-5300 /

Member Achievement

IMLA member, Steven A. Torres has been appointed to the Bristol County Community College Board of Trustees. CLICK HERE to read more. Congratulations to Tip!


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