W. Cullen Battle

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Cullen Battle B

W. Cullen Battle

Email: cbattle@fabianvancott.com

Direct Line : 801.323.2255

Fax : 801.596.2814

215 South State Street Suite 1200
Salt Lake City, Utah 84111


Cullen Battle has over 30 years of experience practicing in the areas of natural resources, land use and public utilities law. He regularly handles complex litigation cases in these areas, working in conjunction with other Fabian VanCott attorneys who have expertise in the firm’s core competency areas. He represents electric and water utilities in land use approvals, right of way acquisition for electric transmission lines, wind energy facilities, water treatment plants and pipelines. Cullen has also represented major environmental organizations in notable cases and transactions. He was appointed to the Utah Reclamation, Mitigation and Conservation Commission by President Clinton, was chair of the Salt Lake City Public Utilities Advisory Committee and presently serves on the Utah Supreme Court’s Advisory Committee on Civil Procedure. He is an adjunct professor at the University of Utah, where he teaches environmental law. In the community, Cullen serves as a board member on the Soldier Hollow Legacy Foundation. Cullen received his bachelor’s and law degrees from the University of Virginia while serving as editor of the Virginia Journal of Natural Resources Law. He is admitted to practice in Utah’s state and federal courts, including the Utah Supreme Court, the 10th and Federal U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court.

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Admitted to practice in Utah 1981

Admitted to the United States Supreme Court, Utah Supreme Court, United States Courts of Appeals for the 10th Circuit and Federal Circuit, and United States District Court for the District of Utah

Adjunct Professor of Law, University of Utah, Environmental Law Practice.

Utah Supreme Court Advisory Committee on Civil Procedure, 1995-2014. Chair, Salt Lake City Public Utilities Advisory Committee, 2002-07

Utah Solid and Hazardous Waste Control Board, 1999-2004

Utah Reclamation Mitigation and Conservation Commission, appointed by President Clinton, 1999-2003

Chair, Litigation Section Utah State Bar, 1993-94

Rated AV by Martindale Hubbell

Representative Projects


Water District: Represented a local water district in major facility siting and right of way acquisition and litigation about the construction of a major water treatment plant and aqueduct.

Electric Utility: Represented an electric utility in environmental and local land use permitting, right of way condemnation and acquisition, and other matters about major electric transmission lines and wind energy facilities.

Water Users Association: Represented a water user's association in transfer of electric utility line and renegotiation of long-term power sales contract.

Sewer District: Represented a sewer district in litigation about siting of a regional sewer treatment plant.

Transit: Represented local transit authority in closing an at-grade rail crossing and in litigation regarding local referendum on routing of light rail line.
Municipal Law: Defended local cities in cases regarding a challenge to fees for inspection of public improvements, a challenge to building fees and an insurance claim for major sewer backup.
Environmental / Public Interest: Grazing Permits and Ranch Acquisitions - Represented major environmental organizations in acquiring and defending federal grazing permits and properties in environmentally areas.

Roadless Areas: Represented a major environmental organization in litigation about RS 2477 rights of way.

Mine Tailings: Represented a county and others in opposing the permanent disposal of uranium tailings on banks of Colorado River; represented an Indian tribe in relation to disposal of uranium tailings near the reservation.

Public Trust / Sovereign Lands: Represented environmental organizations and others in acquisition of properties around Great Salt Lake and in litigation about sovereign boundary issues.


J.D., University of Virginia, 1981

Editor, Virginia Journal of Natural Resources Law, 1980 - 1981

B.A., University of Virginia, 1976

Publications & Presentations

"Latest Developments in Utah and Wyoming Land Use Law,” Rocky Mountain Land Use Institute Annual Conference, Denver, CO, March 14, 2014

“Making Decisions That Will Survive Scrutiny: Substantial Evidence,” Utah Land Use Institute Annual Conference, October 30, 2013

“Utah Law of Eminent Domain,” Utah Land Use Institute Seminars, Salt Lake City, Utah, February 17, 2011

"Cost Effective Discovery and Proposed Changes to URCP," Utah State Bar Fall Forum, Salt Lake City, Utah, November 18-19, 2010

"Land Use and Zoning Law Litigation," National Business Institute Seminars, Salt Lake City, Utah, December 3, 2009

"Environmental Law for Civil Engineers," Half Moon Seminars, Salt Lake City, Utah, August 25, 2005

"Role of County Government in Wetlands Protection," National Association of Counties, Annual Western Conference, Ogden, Utah, May, 2004

"Managing Meander Boundaries and Recent Developments under the Public Trust Doctrine," 22nd Annual Submerged Lands Conference, Park City, Utah, August 26, 2003

“Utah Land Conservation Issues,” Lorman Education Services, Salt Lake City, February 22, 2001

"Utah Land Conservation Issues," Lorman Education Services, Salt Lake City, February 22, 2001

"The Meander Line Controversy: Issues Related to the Ownership and Control of the Shorelands of the Great Salt Lake," Salt Lake City, November, 2000

"Legacy Highway: Conflicting State Local and Federal Interests," Seventeenth Annual State and Local Government Conference, Brigham Young University, March 26, 1999

Co-Editor, Model Utah Jury Instructions (Michie & Co.), 1992-1994

Community Service

Board Member, Soldier Hollow Legacy Foundation

Volunteer, Utah Nordic Alliance