Developing Distressed Property: Desirability and Viability

Zarwin, Baum, DeVito, Kaplan, Schaer, Toddy P.C.
Paul M. Schmidt

July 25, 2017

Location, Location, Location. This remains one of the critical aspects of real estate development. The other is that “it’s not about the money, it’s about the money.” So, while the redevelopment of Brownfields makes people feel good, at the end of the day, a Brownfield site has to be in the right location for a redeveloper or buyer, and has to make economic sense. Currently, a number of trends in real estate desirability are making Brownfield sites the perfect location for redevelopment and reuse. At the same time, as programs concerning cleanup, funding and risk management have become more favorable, the return on investment, or economic viability, of properties has also increased. This article will examine some of the key aspects of desirability and viability that are working together to make Brownfield redevelopment increasingly attractive in today’s real estate market.

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Coming Soon To A Massachusetts Facility Near You: More Citizen Enforcement?

Foley Hoag LLP
Seth D. Jaffe

August 9, 2017

Earlier this week, the Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs went live with two new web sites intended to increase the public availability of information concerning regulated entities in Massachusetts.  The first, ePLACE, will provide information about on-line permit applications.  However, since MassDEP began accepting on-line applications on May 5, 2017, ePLACE is going to be of much more interest in the future than it is today.  As of now, there is not much there.

The more interesting site is the Data Portal, which lists permits, inspections, and enforcement actions with respect to any facility in Massachusetts.  The site does not provide many specifics, but it does list every existing permit and enforcement action against each facility in Massachusetts.

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NJDEP Offers Guidance On Remedial Action Report Submittal Deadlines

Riker Danzig Scherer Hyland & Perretti LLP
Laurie J. Sands

August 1, 2017

Reprinted with permission.  © 2017 Riker Danzig Scherer Hyland & Perretti LLP.

Recently, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (“NJDEP”) issued guidance regarding the regulatory and mandatory timeframes for the submission of a remedial action report pursuant to the Technical Requirements for Site Remediation and the Administrative Requirements of the Remediation of Contaminated Sites. The guidance is meant to assist persons responsible for conducting the remediation (“PRCR”) in determining when remedial action reports are due, when to request an extension of the regulatory and mandatory deadlines for submission of such reports and in what situations the NJDEP will consider such an extension.

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EPA Administrator Takes Aim at Aging Superfund Sites

Phillips Lytle LLP
Myriah V. Jaworski

July 27, 2017

Despite condoning a 34 percent cut to his agency’s funding for fiscal year 2018, U.S. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt this week announced a seemingly ambitious plan to expedite the federal Superfund process to address the roughly 1,300 sites listed on the National Priorities List. Characterizing these sites as “languishing,” Pruitt promised that the “days of talking are over,” and that EPA would take immediate action to accelerate cleanup efforts nationwide.

Specifically, on July 25, Pruitt and the U.S. EPA Superfund Task Force released their “Recommendations to Streamline and Improve the Superfund Program.” The Report detailed 42 recommendations organized into five goals, which Pruitt believes will have the effect of expediting the remedial process and promoting reuse of contaminated sites. The high-level goals identified are: (1) expediting cleanup and remediation; (2) re-invigorating responsible party cleanup and reuse; (3) encouraging private investment; (4) promoting redevelopment and community revitalization; and (5) encouraging partners and stakeholders.

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Public Comment Opens on WOTUS Rulemaking


Vinson & Elkins LLP
Andrew R. Stewart and Taylor Holcomb

July 31, 2017

On July 27, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Corps of Engineers jointly proposed to rescind the “waters of the United States” definition in the Code of Federal Regulations and to apply the definition in place both before to the 2015 rulemaking adding the definition and after the Sixth Circuit’s late 2015 stay of the rule. This rulemaking is drawing substantial interest because the definition outlines much of these agencies’ jurisdiction. Public comments are due on August 28, 2017.

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