Krista-Ann M. Staley

Area of Emphasis

Krista-Ann Staley is a shareholder in the Public Sector Services and Energy & Natural Resources Groups of Babst Calland. Ms. Staley’s practice focuses on municipal law, with an emphasis on land use and land development issues. She represents boroughs, townships, municipal authorities, zoning hearing boards, individuals and private entities in the Pittsburgh area. Ms. Staley advises these clients when revising or enacting land use regulations and when considering land use applications. She also assists with issues pertaining to state and local roadway regulations, record requests filed under the Pennsylvania Right-to-Know Law, and public meeting requirements under the Sunshine Act.

In addition, Krista-Ann counsels and represents private landowners and businesses in matters relating to governmental entities, such as analyzing municipal ordinances and applying for and obtaining various land use approvals. She also assists private sector clients with filing Right-to-Know requests and appeals related to these filings. She works often with energy industry clients, including drilling and midstream companies, with a particular emphasis on the land use and roadway use issues related to the development of the Marcellus Shale throughout Pennsylvania.

Ms. Staley assists public and private clients in matters related to the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code, various municipal codes including the Second Class Township Code and Borough Code, the Pennsylvania Vehicle Code, the Pennsylvania Sunshine Act, the Pennsylvania Municipal Authorities Act and the Pennsylvania Public Official and Employee Ethics Act on a daily basis. She also serves private clients by analyzing municipal ordinances with respect to certain uses, such as telecommunication infrastructure, throughout the country.


Ms. Staley graduated cum laude from the Honor’s College at Ball State University in 2003 where she earned a Bachelor of Urban Planning and Regional Development and was selected as an American Institute of Certified Planners Outstanding Student. She earned her J.D. from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law in 2007 with a certificate in advanced study of environmental law, science and policy. While in law school Ms. Staley served as a senior editor and outreach coordinator for JURIST, Pitt’s legal news and research website, and won the Ronald D. Ecker Memorial Award for Outstanding Achievement in Client Counseling in 2006 and 2007. Ms. Staley also received the CALI Excellence for the Future Award in Law and Science and Environmental Politics and Policy, in addition to participating in Pitt’s Environmental Law Clinic.

Upon graduation, Ms. Staley clerked for President Judge Kenneth G. Valasek, Senior Judge Joseph A. Nickleach, and Judge James J. Panchik of the Armstrong County Court of Common Pleas.

Memberships and Affiliations

Ms. Staley is a member of the Allegheny County, Pennsylvania and American Bar Associations. She also serves on the Legislative Committee of the Pennsylvania Chapter of the American Planning Association and is a member of the Pennsylvania Chapter of the Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) Network. She is an alumna of the CORO Center for Civic Leadership Women in Leadership program and a member of the Coro Pittsburgh Alumni Council.

In 2014, Ms. Staley was selected by The Legal Intelligencer as one of only 36 “Lawyers on the Fast Track” in Pennsylvania. This recognition is given to attorneys under the age of 40 who have demonstrated excellence in four categories: development of the law, advocacy and community contributions, service to the bar and peer/public recognition. In 2021, she was listed in The Best Lawyers in America© in the Land Use and Zoning Law Section by BL Rankings. Ms. Staley was also selected to the 2012-2017 Pennsylvania Rising Stars lists (Thomson Reuters).

  • Co-Author, “Court: Township Has No Standing to Enforce Neighbor’s Conservation Easement,” PA Law Weekly, February 11, 2021.
  • Co-Author, “RLUIPA’s Land Use Provisions Remain Essential Against Religious Discrimination,” PA Law Weekly, December 17, 2020.
  • Presenter, “Zoning Refresher: Navigating and Enforcing Local Zoning Ordinances,” Commonwealth Building Officials Continuing Education, October 7, 2020.
  • Panelist, “Ethical Considerations in the Diversity and Inclusion Space,” Institute for Energy Law 11th Law of Shale Plays Conference, September 10, 2020.
  • Presenter, “Get in the Zone,” CREW Lunch & Learn, August 7, 2020.
  • Co-Author, “Commonwealth Court Sees Spot Zoning, Overturns Industrial Rezoning,” PA Law Weekly¸ June 17, 2020.
  • Author, “Commonwealth Court Update: Preliminary Opinions and Development Rights,” PA Law Weekly¸ April 16, 2020.
  • Presenter, “Local Land Use Powers and Limitations,” Local Government Academy Newly Elected Officials’ Course, 2020, 2018, 2016, 2014 and 2012.
  • Presenter, “Hot Topics in Oil & Gas Law 2019,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute, December 4, 2019.
  • Presenter, “Beyond Zoning: Other Local Government Issues Encountered by Oil and Gas Operations,” Shale Insight™ 2019 Conference, October 22-24, 2019.
  • Co-Author, “Court Strikes Down Home Rule Municipality’s Right-of-Way Ordinance as Preempted by PUC,” PA Law Weekly, October 17, 2019.
  • Panelist, “Urban Water Planning,” Pitt Law Energy Law and Policy Institute Conference, March 5, 2019.
  • Co-Author, “The Whereabouts of Weed: Zoning Implications of the Medical Marijuana Act,” PA Law Weekly¸ February 19, 2019.
  • Co-Author, “Issues Redefine Regulatory Landscape,” The American Oil & Gas Reporter, November 2018.
  • Co-Author, “Raise It or Waive It: Standing Can Play a Critical Role in Zoning Hearings,” PA Law Weekly¸ August 23, 2018.
  • Guest Speaker, IUP Institute for Rural Health & Safety – Planning Law, April 25, 2018.
  • Co-Author, “Commonwealth Court Addresses Zoning of Short-Term Rentals,” PA Law Weekly, February 15, 2018.
  • Facilitator, Quaker Valley Council of Governments Strategic Planning Session, February 3, 2018.
  • Panelist, PBI Municipal & DEP Issues in Oil & Gas Law, November 20, 2017.
  • Co-Author, “And the Beat Goes On: Municipal Ordinances Continue to Face Legal Challenges,” The PIOGA Press, May 2017.
  • Presenter, “Land Uses/Zoning in Oil and Gas Development,” Northern Appalachian Landman’s Association, March 16, 2017.
  • Co-Author, “Commonwealth Court Reiterates Standards When Interpreting Zoning Ordinances,” PA Law Weekly, October 20, 2016.
  • Presenter, “Understanding Pipelines: What Local Governments and Planners Need to Know,” Local Government Academy Webinar, October 20, 2016.
  • Panelist, “Mounting Local Government Regulatory Challenges to the Industry,” Shale Insight 2016 Conference, September 22, 2016.  *Coverage of this program in “State Courts Are Clarifying Legal Authority of Local Governments to Regulate Oil and Gas Activities,” The Foster Report, No. 3118, October 7, 2016.
  • Co-Author, “Robinson Township Arguments Continue to Reverberate,” The PIOGA Press, May 2016.
  • Co-Author, “Court: Oil and Gas Operations Compatible with Agricultural Uses,” PA Law Weekly, February 26, 2016.
  • Presenter, “Local Land Use Powers and Limitations,” Local Government Academy, 2016, 2014 and 2012.
  • Co-Author, “Content Neutrality in the Government Regulation of Free Speech,” PA Law Weekly, September 1, 2015.
  • Co-Author, “Excessive Zoning and Land-Use Fees Subject to Legal Challenge; Land Use and Planning,” PA Law Weekly, July 7, 2015.
  • Speaker, “Energy Production and Distribution,” Municipal Law Colloquium 2015, June 5, 2015.
  • Co-Author, “Zoning Ordinance Validity Challenges Persist In the Wake of the Robinson Township Plurality Opinion,” The PIOGA Press, April 2015.
  • Co-Author, “Municipalities’ Ability to Regulate Noncommercial Speech,” PA Law Weekly, March 3, 2015.
  • Co-Author, “The Evolution of Act 13: Commonwealth Court Limits Applicability of Robinson Township Plurality Opinion,” The PIOGA Press, February 2015.
  • Co-Presenter, “Managing Marcellus:  Open and Effective Meetings and Records,” Local Government Academy, July 2014.
  • Co-Author, “Billboard Regulation:  Proceed with Caution,” PA Law Weekly, April 15, 2014.
  • Panelist, “Impact of Marcellus Shale on the Commercial Real Estate Industry,” Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW), April 2014.
  • Presenter, “Legal Update,” Pennsylvania Planning Association Southwest Section, April 2014.
  • Presenter, “Tackling Ethical Dilemmas,” Webinar, Local Government Academy, October 2012.
  • Presenter, “Managing Roads During Marcellus Development,” Local Government Academy, May 2012.
  • Author, “Local Regulation of Development of the Marcellus Shale Play in Pennsylvania,” ABA Section of Environment and Energy Newsletter, Vol. 9, No. 1, October 2011.
  • Presenter, “Zoning 101,” CREW Lunch & Learn, August 2011.
  • Presenter, “Recent Developments in Land Use Law,” Allegheny County Bar Association Municipal and School Solicitor’s Section, April 2011.
  • Co-Presenter, “Zoning Matters: The Process of an Update and the Legal Issues that Should Concern You,” APA-PA Chapter Spring 2011 Training Series.
  • Author, “Intergovernmental Conflicts: A Borough’s Authority to Regulate State and Federal Land Uses,” Borough News, January 2011.
  • Co-Author, “Know Your Limits:  Townships Should Tread Carefully When Levying Land Use Fess, Breaking Ground magazine, May/June 2010 edition.
  • Co-Author, “Fee Simple? Legal Limitations on Land Use Fees,” The Township Planner, Spring 2010.