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Legislative Memo

BILL:

A.6009 Part R Budget

Support

SUBJECT:

Brownfield Extension

 

DATE:

March 10, 2015

 

The Business Council supports this legislation, which will extend the Brownfield Cleanup Tax credit until March 31, 2025.

The Business Council strongly supports efforts to extend the Brownfield Cleanup Program. This program works for the environment. It works for economic development. And, it works for New York State. Unless extended, the BCP tax incentives will expire on December 31, 2015. This will result in very few new sites entering the program and being remediated, since it is unlikely that new sites will be completed by the time the tax incentives end.

BCP has proven to be a catalyst for private-sector investment in the cleanup and redevelopment of contaminated properties. The BCP was established to allow for the voluntary clean up and redevelop of real property, the reuse of which was complicated by the presence or potential presence of a contaminant. By design, the program allows investors to offset a portion of their site preparation and redevelopment costs through state tax credits.

Data from the Brownfield Redevelopment Tax Credits shows that every state dollar was matched by $6.78 private dollars. Since 2007, the BCP has returned to the state over $6.5 billion in private investment.

The Department of Environmental Conservation's (DEC) records show that it takes on average 3.77 years to remediate a site under the BCP. Despite significant recent steps by the DEC to accelerate the administrative process, few sites entering the program now are assured completion before the expiration of the tax incentives. Therefore, it is essential to extend the program’s tax credits in order to ensure continued private sector projects to cleanup and redevelop brownfield sites.

We note that Part R of A.6009 also would allow the state to finance the “Environmental Restoration Program (ERP)” – which provides funding for municipalities to cover the costs for site investigation and remediation of brownfield sites – using state bonding authority dedicated to the state’s superfund program.  The Business Council supports continuation of the ERP,  but we do not endorse using Superfund financing for the ERP.  The ERP should be funded as it has been in the past with NY Works funding.   Therefore, we do not support the ERP components of Part R.

The Business Council supports continuation of the ERP,  but we do not endorse using Superfund financing for the ERP.  The ERP should be funded as it has been in the past with NY Works funding.   Therefore, we do not support the ERP components of Part R.