Hart M. Passman

Partner, Elrod Friedman LLP

Hart M. Passman

Partner, Elrod Friedman LLP


About Hart Passman

Hart Passman is a land use and local government attorney who represents both municipalities and private sector clients. He serves as the Village Attorney for the Villages of Arlington Heights and Libertyville, and assists with the representation of the City of Highland Park, the Village of Lincolnwood, and several of the firm’s other Illinois local government clients.​

Hart’s municipal practice runs the gamut of legal issues facing local governments. He has extensive experience in public-private partnership and development projects, including the establishment of tax increment financing (TIF) districts and special service areas, as well as the negotiation of property tax and sales tax financing agreements. Hart drafts and negotiates zoning approvals and agreements for numerous zoning variations, special use permits, planned unit developments, annexation agreements and development agreements.

In addition, Hart counsels his municipal clients on a variety of code enforcement, licensing and regulatory affairs, and statutory obligations, such as the Open Meetings Act and the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). He is well-versed in parliamentary procedures, liquor licensing and enforcement issues.

For private sector clients, Hart works extensively to secure land use and zoning approvals, including annexations, subdivisions and planned developments. Hart has particular experience in drafting and negotiating tax-increment financing, tax sharing, and other public-private partnership agreements. His successful projects include large shopping centers, medical facilities, hotels, mixed-use developments, and office buildings in municipalities large and small.

Hart is active in professional organizations serving both Illinois local governments and the Illinois real estate community. In 2020, he served as the Chair of the Home Rule Attorneys Committee of the Illinois Municipal League. He also hosts the Chicago chapter of the REAL Professionals Network, an interdisciplinary educational and marketing initiative for senior-level real estate and development professionals throughout the region.


  • Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law, J.D., cum laude
  • Washington University in St. Louis, B.A., with honors
  • Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • Chambers USA – America’s Leading Business Lawyers guide, Real Estate: Zoning/Land Use, Up and Coming, 2021


  • IICLE Land Use Law:  Special Topics 2021 Edition
  • A Proposed Change to Chicago Zoning Rules May Authorize Future Residential Uses in Fulton Market | Client Alert | March 31, 2021
  • What Ill. Sanctuary City Bill Means For Local Gov’ts, Co-Author | Law360 | June 7, 2017
  • Land Use Law: Special Topics, Co-Author, Glossary of Zoning Terms | IICLE | 2017 Edition
  • Elected Official Immunity in Making Local Zoning Decisions | The Urban Lawyer | June 1, 2010
  • Glossary of Zoning Terms – 2007 Supplement | IICLE – Land Use Law | 2007

Community Service

  • Illinois Municipal League Home Rule Attorneys Committee (Chair, 2020)
  • Illinois Local Government Lawyers Association
  • Real Professionals Network, Chicago Chapter
  • Coach – Oz Park Baseball Association

Speaking Engagements

  • American Planning Association, Illinois Chapter State Conference 2021

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