Michael E. Dutko, Jr. is a Partner in the firm’s Fort Lauderdale office. Mr. Dutko’s practice focuses on government relations and public policy, procurement and government contracts, zoning, land use and development, land use and real property litigation, and general commercial and civil litigation.
Mr. Dutko has extensive experience in the field of local government law, representing developers and builders in private practice as well as having served as Assistant City Attorney for the City of Delray Beach. In addition to providing legal services on a wide range of local government matters, he also served as the City’s board counsel for the Site Plan Review and Appearance Board, Historic Preservation Board, Code Enforcement Board, Board of Adjustment, Planning and Zoning Board, and City Commission, guiding each body through the consideration of complex legal and controversial matters. Mr. Dutko worked closely with the City’s Planning and Zoning Department regarding the review and processing of applications for development in the City, which is widely regarded as one of South Florida’s premier locations. In addition to land development and zoning work, Mr. Dutko was a primary attorney responsible for the preparation of government contracts, review and drafting of solicitations for competitive procurements, ethics and Sunshine Law consultation, and labor and collective bargaining negotiations. Mr. Dutko was the City’s chief litigator in lawsuits arising during his tenure, including but not limited to writs of certiorari, negligence actions, and ballot challenges.
Prior to the City of Delray Beach, Mr. Dutko served as an Assistant State Attorney with the Palm Beach State Attorney’s Office. There, he gained significant and valuable jury trial experience in cases ranging from Driving under the Influence to First Degree Murder. While at the State Attorney’s Office, Mr. Dutko was selected to join the office’s Public Corruption Unit, leading a team of investigators and prosecuting complex crimes committed by public employees, police officers, and elected officials. In addition to numerous other high profile and highly publicized cases, Mr. Dutko led Palm Beach County’s first successful prosecution to trial verdict of violations of Florida’s Sunshine Law, involving a city commission’s attempt to secretly authorize unlawful payments to a city manager.
Florida State University, College of Law, Juris Doctor, 2009