• vcard
312.463.6344
  • Education
    • J.D., with Distinction, University of Iowa, 2008, Managing Editor of Journal of Corporation Law; Outstanding Student Writer Award
    • B.S., Dean's List, University of Illinois, 2005
  • Court Admissions
    • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit
    • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois
    • U.S. District Court, Central District of Illinois
    • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Illinois

Benjamin Jacobi represents developers of renewable energy projects in zoning, permitting, regulatory, administrative and litigation matters, counseling them on all issues related to complex energy project development, including state and local permitting, road use agreements, NWS agreements and other related matters. He has significant experience in wind and solar projects, having previously served as counsel to governmental entities regulating those developments.

Ben also has over 13 years of litigation experience and has considerable experience defending challenges to energy development permits in court. Ben recently defeated a motion for temporary restraining order seeking to invalidate a special use permit granted to a 200 MW wind farm project and then obtained a dismissal of the case altogether. Ben’s experience litigating challenges to zoning permits enables him to identify and head off key issues of potential dispute in the development phase, saving his clients from potential litigation exposure.

Ben has counseled dozens of local governments on various zoning issues, and within that scope has received multiple appointments as special assistant state’s attorney. In the energy context, Ben has counseled counties on the drafting of their Wind Energy Conversion System (WECS) and Solar Energy Ordinances. He has acted as counsel to the Zoning Board of Appeals during complex hearings on proposed amendments to WECS Ordinances. He has advised zoning administrators on the regulation of high voltage transmission lines, the impact of energy development on drainage districts, and compliance of solar farm developers with their special use permits. Ben’s prior experience counseling counties and other local governmental entities makes him a valuable and trustworthy resource to clients seeking permitting from local regulators.

  • Served as appointed general counsel to a Zoning Board of Appeals and County Board during proceedings arising from applications for text amendments to the County’s WECS Ordinance, including eight nights of contentious ZBA hearings and four nights of deliberations.  
  • Defended a challenge to a special use permit granted for a 200 MW nameplate wind farm and succeeded in having the case dismissed.
  • Defended a challenge to a building permit granted for a 200 MW nameplate wind farm in a non-zoned county. Defeated a motion for temporary restraining order that sought to halt issuance of building permits for wind turbines and obtained dismissal of the case with prejudice.
  • Defended a challenge to a special use permit granted for a 150 MW nameplate wind farm.
  • Counseled zoning administrator on the regulation of high voltage transmission lines in the county.
  • Counseled zoning administrator on compliance of a solar farm developer with its special use permit.
  • Served as counsel to a Village Board during revocation proceedings of a special use permit.
  • Defended challenge to special use permit issued to industrial manufacturer and achieved dismissal of case.
  • Defended challenge to special use permit issued to a recycling facility and achieved dismissal of the complaint.
  • Counseled Village on transferability of special use permit.
  • Presented oral argument in the Illinois Supreme Court on behalf of client sued for alleged flooding caused by its development of property, and achieved total victory on behalf of client.
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