Legislative Memo



S.6257 / A.9759 (Budget)



Superfund / Brownfields



February 27, 2002


A streamlined "superfund" program and a statutory brownfield program can result in more sites being cleaned up, more quickly, using private sector rather than public sector funds. These reforms can maintain high levels of protection of public health and the environment, while reducing barriers to the continued use and/or redevelopment of once-contaminated sites.

While S.6257/A.9759 includes several positive provisions, it will fail to provide the comprehensive reforms needed in New York State.

Moreover, a number of provisions in this proposal would make the state's current remediation program more onerous with respect to responsible parties that are attempting to negotiate cleanup agreements with the state, and less attractive to "volunteers" that want to remediate and redevelop contaminated sites.

For these reasons, The Business Council respectfully opposes adoption of S.6257/A.9759 in its current form.

Our most significant concerns regarding can S.6257/A.9759 be summarized as follows:

The Business Council can provide a more detailed discussion of these and other issues of concern upon request.

In closing, The Business Council looks forward to working with the Administration, and the Senate and Assembly on a superfund/brownfield package that addresses the concerns listed above. These types of reforms will promote the timely, protective and cost-effective remediation of sites by responsible parties and "volunteers." These reforms also would leave the state with significant financial resources and enforcement mechanisms that would allow it to address abandoned sites and true "recalcitrant" responsible parties.

However, we respectfully recommend against approval of S.6257/A.9759, as currently proposed.

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