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William Myers III

Partner

800 W. Main Street, Suite 1750, Boise, ID 83702

Bill provides seasoned and effective representation to clients in energy, natural resources, and public land law. 

He draws from a depth of experience including his service as the Solicitor of the U.S. Department of the Interior. Bill advocates for clients in all branches of the federal and state governments regarding public lands, natural resources, and environmental matters. His strength is his ability to strategize successful outcomes based on his extensive experience in the courts, Congress and state legislatures, and before federal and state administrative agencies.

As Solicitor, Bill was the chief legal officer and third-ranking official at Interior, whose jurisdiction covers approximately 20 percent of nation’s surface estate and a significant amount of the nation’s minerals. Bill supervised an office of more than 300 attorneys in 19 locations nationwide. He advised the Secretary and other officials on appellate and trial matters as well as policy and administrative issues and worked closely with the Department of Justice and other federal agencies.

Bill also served as Deputy General Counsel for Programs at the U.S. Department of Energy. He directed the work of agency attorneys in the areas of international energy, civilian nuclear energy, DOE contracts, and regulatory intervention. Prior to DOE, he served as an Assistant to the Attorney General in the United States Department of Justice. Bill began his tenure in Washington, D.C. as legislative counsel to U.S. Senator Alan Simpson of Wyoming, specializing in energy and natural resources issues. Prior to that, he practiced law in Wyoming.

Bill frequently publishes and speaks on issues related to energy, natural resources, and public lands.

Experience

  • Public Lands
  • Environmental Compliance and Permitting
  • Endangered Species and Other Protected Wildlife
  • Government Affairs
  • Indian Affairs

Client Results

Federal Court Litigation
  • Lead counsel to western Governor litigating BLM and Forest Service land use plan amendments in multiple states.

  • Lead counsel for farm bureaus defending Presidential proclamations under the Antiquities Act.

  • Lead counsel for State Legislature in Congressional Review Act litigation.

  • Lead counsel for multiple farmers challenging USDA plant quarantine regulations.

  • Counsel for natural gas pipeline company's litigation over $3.5 billion project in two circuit courts of appeals including opposition to five emergency motions to stay construction.

  • Counsel for natural gas pipeline company's $450 million looping project in the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals.

  • Lead counsel in federal district court litigation against the United States Forest Service over failure to abide by the Federal Advisory Committee Act.

  • Lead counsel in federal district court and court of appeals litigation against the Forest Service regarding NEPA violations related to bighorn sheep management.

  • Local counsel to the states of Wyoming and Colorado engaged in multiple animal species litigation in federal district court. Species included sage-grouse, grizzly bears, and pygmy rabbits.

  • Lead counsel for multiple ranchers in litigation against the United States arising from the Federal Tort Claims Act and Quiet Title Act associated with Fish & Wildlife Service and Bureau of Indian Affairs projects.

Public Lands and Permitting
  • Provided federal permitting advice for new phosphate mine – no legal challenges filed against the permit. 

  • Assisted renewable energy companies with BLM and FWS permitting in five states for construction of utility-scale wind and solar energy facilities and related transmission lines.

  • Helped pipeline clients obtain FERC, BLM, Forest Service, NHPA, FWS, DOD, and other federal permits for construction of brownfield and greenfield projects in six states.

  • Negotiated Forest Service and National Park Service permit renewals for Wyoming and Idaho outfitters and guides.

  • Representation of numerous ranches and ranching trade associations in grazing permit matters on BLM and Forest Service lands.

  • Representation of state highway department in exchange of lands with National Park Service to simultaneously allow highway improvements and improve federal/state recreational facilities.

Regulatory and Legislative Affairs
    • Lead counsel for State Legislature in litigation over constitutionality of state agency appropriations filed as an original action in the state supreme court.
    • Lead counsel for State Legislature in litigation over allocation of space in the state capitol.
    • Testified in Congress on the legality of the Administration's Wild Lands proposals.
    • Advised state legislators from Idaho, Utah, and Wyoming on gray wolf recovery and de-listing under the Endangered Species Act.
    • Assisted outfitters with compliance with state and federal permitting requirements related to operation of lodge facilities and guided hunting and fishing.
    • Testified before the Idaho House and Senate committees on natural resources regarding sage-grouse litigation and the ESA listing process.
    • Navigated Congressional action in response to species plan amendments spanning ten western states.
Indian Affairs
  • Represented solar energy developer on siting and negotiating $400 million facility on tribal lands.

  • Negotiated renewal of more than 800 miles of natural gas and oil pipeline rights of way across tribal lands.
  • Advised pipeline client on compliance with Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act.
  • Litigated pipeline renewal on allotted lands in federal district court.

News

Publications

Speaking Engagements

Education

Bar Admissions

Court Admissions

Recognition

  • Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, Natural Resources & Environment, 2006-2020
  • The Best Lawyers in America© Lawyer of the Year, Environmental Law – Boise, 2016
  • The Best Lawyers in America© Lawyer of the Year, Litigation – Environmental - Boise, 2013, 2017, 2020
  • The Best Lawyers in America©, Environmental Law, 2007-2021; Litigation – Environmental, 2011-2020
  • Mountain States Super Lawyers®, Energy & Resources, 2008-2020
  • Idaho Business Review, Leaders in Law, Award Recipient
  • Martindale-Hubbell® AV Preeminent® rating, 2009-present
  • Who’s Who in America, in the West, and in American Law (variously from 1995 to present)

Professional and Civic Affiliations

  • Idaho Statesman Editorial Board, Former Member, 2018-2020
  • Governor’s Sage Grouse Task Force, Appointed Former Member 
  • Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation, Idaho State Bar Trustee, 2005-present
  • Federal Lands Task Force Working Group (chartered by Idaho State Board of Land Commissioners), Former Chairman, 2000
  • American Bar Association Committee on Public Lands, Section of Environment, Energy and Resources, Former Vice Chairman
  • National Ski Patrol, Volunteer Alpine Patroller, 2013-present
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