Partner Rob Thall has been with Bauckham Sparks since 1991. Rob serves as general or special counsel to many general townships, charter townships, and sewer and water authorities throughout the state. Rob is also lead counsel for the Michigan Townships Association.
Rob is a Michigan State University alumni and a graduate of Cooley Law School. Rob and his family, which includes his wife MaryJane and his three children Cam, Josh and Tori, are long-time residents of Kalamazoo.
Municipal Practice Focus
Rob's practice includes all areas of township law. He is the firm's lead attorney for tax issues. He also advises the firm's clients on issues such as franchise agreements (including electric, gas, sewer and water), the Metro Act, installment purchase agreements, real estate matters, bankruptcy collections, road funding and right of way related matters, 425 agreements, assessing, and other municipal finance matters. Rob offers clients invaluable insight into new legislation and trends with regard to township government and law.
Rob is sought out for his knowledge in municipal tax matters and represents over 30 municipalities with tax appeals before the Michigan Tax Tribunal. In addition, Rob recently served on a statewide panel drafting technical revisions to the personal property tax reform legislation. He has taught an assessor's training class approved for credit by the State Tax Commission and is a ready resource for township personnel on how new tax-related legislation affects townships.
Instructor, Moderator & Author
Rob teaches classes throughout the state for MTA and other municipal groups on a variety of municipal law topics. Rob has also taught township officials and township attorneys on topics such as special assessments and roads funding methods. He has also served as the moderator of the Attorney Institute at the MTA Annual Conference for several years. Rob has written and published numerous articles on township law, including regular articles for the Michigan Townships Association magazine.
Appellate Experience & Cases
Rob has extensive experience arguing township issues before the Court of Appeals and the Michigan Supreme Court. A partial listing of cases Rob has been involved with includes:
- Clam Lake Township v. The State Boundary Commission (Docket No. 151800)
- Lyle Schmidt Farm LLC v. Township of Mendon (Docket No. 326611)
- Hartland Glen Development LLC v. Township of Hartland (Docket No. 321347)
- New Covert Generating Company LLC v. Township of Covert (Docket No. 320877)
- Great Lakes Guardians v. Township of Sims (Docket No. 320856)
- AutozoneStores,Inc. v. City of Warren (Docket No. 320213)
- Forest Hill Energy-Fowler Farms LLC v. Township of Bengal (Docket No. 152060)
- Home Depot USA, Inc. v. Township of Breitung (Docket No. 149408)
- Lowe's Home Centers, Inc. v. Township of Marquette (Docket No. 149407)
- Treetops Acquisition Co. LLC v. Township of Dover (Docket No. 313173)
- Donald E. Lewallen v. Township of Porter (Docket No. 312677)
- John Kane v. Township of Williamstown (Docket No. 311182)
- Citizens Action Group of Plymouth Twp v. Charter Township of Plymouth (Docket No. 308226)
- Toll Northville Limited Partnership v. Township of Northville (Docket No. 143281)
- Cherryland Electric Cooperative v. Township of Garfield (Docket No. 143281)
- Cherryland Electric Cooperative v. Township of East Bay (Docket No. 296830)
- C.L. Kruithoff Development Co. v. Township of Allegan (Docket No. 288073)
- Involved Citizens Enterprises, Inc. v. Township of East Bay (Docket No. 284706)
- Charter Township of Commerce v. MPSC (Docket No. 269263)
- Charter Township of Marquette v. City of Marquette (Docket No. 268535)
- Holwerda Buildings, LLC v. Township of Grattan (Docket No. 260711)
- Anne Adams v. Odessa Township (Docket No. 259169)
- Claybanks Township v. Steven Haystead (Docket No. 256234)
- Parma Township v. Village of Springport (Docket No. 227023)
- In re App of Michigan Electric Transmission Co. for Transmission Line (Docket No. 317893)
- Armada Township v. Ken Hampton, et al. (Docket No. 325135)
- In re: Petition for Foreclosure of Certain Parcels of Property Due to Unpaid Taxes, Interest and Fees Macomb County and Charter Township of Chesterfield v. Fox, LLC d/b/a Rosie O'Grady's (Docket No. 149506)
- Associates Builders & Contractors v. City of Lansing (Docket No. 149622)
- Kenneth J. Speicher v. Columbia Township Board of Trustees, et al. (Docket No. 148617)
- Michigan Properties, LLC v. Meridian Township (Docket Nos. 143085, 143086, 143087)