Frank L. Hearne
Top Rated Environmental Attorney in Tampa, FL
Recognized as a leading environmental law attorney, Frank L. Hearne is a shareholder of Mechanik Nuccio Hearne & Wester, P.A. Located in Tampa, Florida, he serves Tampa Bay, Lakeland, Winter Haven, Gainesville, Pensacola, Ft. Myers, Naples, Ocala, Orlando, Sarasota, Bradenton, Jacksonville, and other areas of Florida, providing advice and counsel to companies, governmental bodies and individuals throughout the state on a variety of environmental matters. Mr. Hearne has worked on projects involving the Florida Department of Environmental Protection's Northwest, Northeast, Central, South, and Southwest Districts, as well as projects involving Florida's five Water Management Districts and Region 4 of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Mr. Hearne has extensive experience in cases involving permits and enforcment defense arising under every major federal environmental law, including the CERCLA, RCRA, the Safe Drinking Water Act, the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, the Toxic Substances Control Act and related Florida statutes. Of late, his practice has focused on two general areas: (1) Redevelopment of environmentally challenged properties such as Brownfields and other sites with soil and groundwater contamination and (2) Development approvals for impacts to wetlands and other protected habitats, including state and federal licensing and wetlands mitigation banking. Mr. Hearne has acted as environmental counsel to commercial real estate developers, purchasers, sellers and lenders, as well as state and local governments. His accomplishments throughout his distinguished career have earned him several accolades from his fellow attorneys, including an AV Preeminent* peer review rating through Martindale-Hubbell and being selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America.
In 1972, Mr. Hearne graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Science in Engineering Science - focused upon water resources engineering. He subsequently obtained a Master of Science in zoology focused on aquatic and estauarine ecology from the same institution. His work as an enviornmental consultant lead to an interest in becoming an environmental lawyer and he enrolled at the University of Florida Levin College of Law. He was awarded his Juris Doctor with honors in 1981. He was a member the University of Florida Law Review. He joined Mechanik Nuccio Hearne & Wester, P.A., in Tampa in 1999.
Mr. Hearne is admitted to practice in Florida and is frequently asked to speak on environmental topics at many major environmental conferences such as the Florida Brownfields Association, the Florida Environmental Permitting Summer School and seminars sponsored by FDEP District Offices. Mr. Hearne's professional memberships include the Florida Brownfields Association, the Environmental and Land Use Law Section of The Florida Bar and the Real Property, Probate and Trust Section of the Florida Bar.
Mr. Hearne keeps abreast of recent developments related to PFAS (polyfluoroalkyl substances), including PFOS (perfluorooctane sulfonate) and PFOA (perfluorooctanoic acid), which have recently been found to have contaminated drinking water wells throughout the country, and are most often associated with firefighting training facilities.
Frank Hearne's son, Travis M. Hearne, is an Associate Attorney at Mechanik Nuccio Hearne & Wester.
Travis graduated magna cum laude from Stetson University College of Law, where he finished 11th in his class and received the highest grade awards in his sections of Torts, Property, and Administrative Law. He completed the Environmental Law Concentration at Stetson and focused his legal studies on the fields of environmental, land use, administrative, and municipal and local government law. He was a member of Stetson’s Moot Court Board and represented Stetson twice at the Pace University National Environmental Law Moot Court Competition, where he received two best oralist awards.
Travis also was a Senior Associate of the Stetson Law Review and sat on the Law Review’s Spring 2019 Publication Committee. His law review comment focused on regulation of water quality, From Category 4B to Category 2: How Local Stakeholders in the Tampa Bay Nitrogen Management Consortium Battled Nutrient Pollution to Improve the Bay, was selected for publication in the Stetson Law Review’s Summer 2019 Edition. Travis was also selected to present his comment at the Scholarship Luncheon held by the Stetson Law Review once each semester.
During his time at Stetson, Travis also served as a Biodiversity Fellow at Stetson’s Institute for Biodiversity Law and Policy, which afforded him the opportunity to attend the Fifteenth Meeting of the Scientific Committee of the Inter-American Convention for the Protection and Conservation of Sea Turtles in Tegucigalpa, Honduras in September 2018 on behalf of the Institute. Travis also assisted in researching an amicus brief filed in the Southern District of New York on behalf of the Society of Wetland Scientists in the case of New York v. Pruitt involving litigation over the Federal Clean Water Rule.
Travis was a certified legal intern at the City Attorney’s office of the City of St. Petersburg, where he researched a broad variety of issues pertaining to municipal law. At graduation, he was awarded the Outstanding Local Government Law Student Award by the Florida Bar’s City, County, and Local Government Law Section.
Since graduation, Travis has been published by both the ABA’s Section of Energy, Environment, and Resources and the Florida Association of Environmental Professionals.
Before attending law school, Travis earned his B.A. magna cum laude from the University of South Florida in English Literature. He lives in Land O’ Lakes Florida with his wife, Kasandra, and their mini-dachsund, Oscar.
*AV®, AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished and Martindale-Hubbell Notable are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell® is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the anonymous opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Rating™ fall into two categories – legal ability and general ethical standards.
About Frank L. Hearne
First Admitted: 1982, Florida
Professional Webpage: http://floridalandlaw.com/hearne/
Pro bono/Community Service
- United Methodist Church, Certified Lay Speaker
- Real Property Probate and Trust Law Section, Member
- Florida Brownfields Association, Florida Bar Environmental and Land Use Section, Member Board of Directors, 2019
- University of Florida, M.S., Zoology, Major: Aquatic, marine biology and ecology, 1977
- University of Florida, B.S., Engineering Science, Major: Water resources, 1972
- The Best Lawyers in America
- Florida "Super Lawyers"
- Who's Who Legal: USA
- This article, published in the Environmental Law Reporter at 46 ELR 10858 and coauthored with Tara Disy Allden of Kimley-Horn, David Goldman of Kimley-Horn, and Bill Spinner of Kimley-Horn, discusses the use of remediated Brownfield sites as mitigation banks., Author, Brownfields to Green: A Proposal for Redevelopment of Brownfields Property for Natural Resource Value, Environmental Law Institute, 2016
- Plant City Bar Association Presentation January 2014: Why does the environmental condition of a property matter in a transaction?
- Brownfields Conference Presentation October 2014: The “Pink Palace” Hampton Inn & Suites Bradenton Downtown Historic District
- Real Estate
- Waste Disposal
- Wetlands Mitigation Banking
Last Updated: 5/15/2022