Land Revitalization Spring '07 Newsletter – Shopping for a Superfund Site?
Region 3's New Webpage Shows Properties with Liens and More
Since the passage of the Brownfields Amendments in 2002 buying contaminated or formerly contaminated property for redevelopment has lost some of its stigma. However, real estate developers still must navigate the maze of encumbrances that come with buying a brownfield.
One of those encumbrances is the possibility that the EPA may have a Superfund lien against the property. Potential real estate buyers should research this possibility, and a new EPA Region 3 website will help them do just that. The "Lien Page" link on the Region 3 website gives background on liens, and lists the Superfund sites in the Mid-Atlantic states that currently have liens against them. Region 3 is the only region in the country to provide this information via the Internet.
Superfund liens are unique, in that the dollar amounts are based not only on money already spent for remediation, but also the projected costs for the entire cleanup.
Some liens also include the increase in the market value of a property, since the cleanup was completed – these liens are known as "windfall" liens.
The new webpage discusses these different types of liens and the laws that cover them. It also provides a chart of every Superfund property in Region 3 that has a lien against it, including such information as its tax parcel number, its acreage, its docket number, the dollar amount of the lien, the attorney, the filing date of the lien, and the county in which it is filed.
Users of the "lien page" should be aware that the information provided only covers Superfund liens, and does not discuss any other federal or state liens against a property. Furthermore, it only covers property in the Region 3 states, including Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, West Virginia and the District of Columbia.
To view the new "Lien Page" go to: www.epa.gov/reg3hwmd/real_property.htm.
Article contributed by Ruth Wuenschel
How a Lien Was Resolved for Redevelopment Success:
At Former Plating Site, Compromise Was King
Over the years, the Bo-Win/Peninsula Plating Site in Blades, Delaware has had so many complications blocking its redevelopment, it looked like it would never be re-used, never be returned to the tax rolls, and never be more than a liability to the community. During this time the property was left vacant, the buildings deteriorated and the roof of one of the largest buildings collapsed. But, after more than a decade of starts and stops, the site will finally be redeveloped with at least 20 new housing units on this six-acre site.