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Michelle F. Zaltsberg

Associate

Michelle Zaltsberg primarily practices in the areas of emergency management and disaster recovery. 

Featured Video

Hurricane Recovery: Federal Procurement Guidelines for FEMA Aid Recipients September 13, 2017

Featured Experience

Prepared comprehensive "FEMA Procurement Toolkit" for municipal electric utility membership association, including template procurement policy, written standards of conduct, and various checklists to promote compliance with FEMA procurement requirements among member utilities.

Regularly reviewed and revised draft Requests for Proposal, Invitations to Bid, and contracts for compliance with federal procurement standards at 2 C.F.R. § 200.317-326.

Assisted Florida county in negotiation of settlement of dispute over funding for beach re-nourishment project. The issues arose from the alleged duplication of benefits received by the County through FEMA Public Assistance and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.

Professional Biography

Overview

Michelle has significant experience with the laws, regulations and procedures relating to eligibility for federal disaster and mitigation assistance under the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Public Assistance program. She regularly assists state and local governments and non-profit entities navigate FEMA's administrative appeals process. Michelle's practice also focuses significantly on helping clients create FEMA-compliant procurement programs pursuant to the federal procurement standards at 2 C.F.R. Part 200.

In addition, Michelle represents clients in complex business disputes in both state and federal courts and in arbitrations. 

Representative Matters
  • Provided procurement advice to municipality and U.S. territory clients severely impacted by the 2017 hurricane season. Services included review and revision of high-dollar procurement actions for compliance with FEMA requirements; advice regarding various issues of FEMA eligibility; and reformation and improvement of existing policies and procedures to mitigate future compliance issues.

  • Prepared comprehensive "FEMA Procurement Toolkit" for municipal electric utility membership association, including template procurement policy, written standards of conduct, and various checklists to promote compliance with FEMA procurement requirements among member utilities.

  • Regularly reviewed and revised draft Requests for Proposal, Invitations to Bid, and contracts for compliance with federal procurement standards at 2 C.F.R. § 200.317-326.

  • Successfully appealed deobligation of Public Assistance funding recommended by the Office of Inspector General audit report for a Florida municipality. The second appeal resulted in reinstatement of $2.8 million deobligated as ineligible or insufficiently supported. The second appeal required extensive analysis of the client's invoices, contracts and other documentation. Also advocated for the client at a meeting of FEMA headquarters in Washington, D.C.

  • Assisted Florida county in negotiation of settlement of dispute over funding for beach re-nourishment project. The issues arose from the alleged duplication of benefits received by the County through FEMA Public Assistance and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.

  • Represented general aviation airport in arbitration before the Civilian Board of Contract Appeals in an appeal of FEMA's denial of request for funding of a flood mitigation proposal under FEMA's Section 406 Hazard Mitigation Program. The matter required extensive briefing and a three-day arbitration hearing during which more than a dozen witnesses were examined.

  • Drafted successful motion to defeat a request by the IRS for federal court to issue preliminary injunction as remedial measure against medical clinic client.

  • Obtained permanent injunction in federal court against competitor of client that designed a sophisticated scheme to prey on client's market recognition and goodwill for an important dietary supplement brand. Our client, an over-the-counter brand manufacturer, recently acquired several established health care brands. During due diligence, we identified the scheme and filed an action in U.S. District Court for trademark and trade dress infringement and false labeling. To settle the lawsuit, the defendants agreed to a permanent injunction against infringement, abandoned all markets for the competing product, assigned any rights to their infringing marks to our client and paid a confidential but substantial sum to cover our client's attorneys' fees.

Professional Honors & Activities
  • American Bar Association
  • Member – League of Women Voters of Orange County (2018 – present)
  • Board Member – Jewish Federation of Greater Orlando (2017 – present)
  • Co-Chair, Jewish Federation of Greater Orlando, Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) (2016 – present)
  • Jewish Federation of Greater Orlando, Jerome J. Bornstein Leadership Development Program Participant (2015 – 2016)
  • Georgia Association for Women Lawyers, Past Foundation Board Member and Committee of the Year Award Winner (2013)
  • American Jewish Committee, Black/Jewish Coalition, Marvin C. Goldstein Project Understanding Participant (2013)
Publications
Speaking Engagements

Education

  • University of Michigan Law School, J.D., 2008, cum laude
    • Michigan Telecommunications and Technology Law Review, 2007 – 2008
  • University of Florida, B.A. Business Administration, Minor Mass Communication, 2006, cum laude

Admissions

  • Florida, 2009
  • Georgia, 2009 
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern and Middle Districts of Georgia
  • U.S. District Court for the Middle, Southern and Northern Districts of Florida

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