Maraziti Falcon, LLP has a prestigious environmental law practice, having represented various types of clients ranging from public entities to sole proprietorships to well-known, international corporations. The attorneys at Maraziti Falcon, LLP are well-versed in all environmental laws relating to liability for cleanups and cost recovery; business and real estate transactions; land use and redevelopment; and conducting site remediation in the State of New Jersey, including the recently implemented Site Remediation Reform Act and Licensed Site Remediation Professional Program (LSRP).
The firm’s attorneys have guided clients through matters involving:
- Freshwater wetlands, flood hazard, and Highlands;
- Condemnation and the set-aside for remediation funds pursuant to the Suydam methodology;
- Obtaining remediation financing from federal agencies, state agencies and private lenders;
- Water quality, sewer service, infrastructure and wastewater management;
- Brownfields redevelopment;
- Achieving administrative closure for underground storage tank removals;
- Pursuing cost-effective remediation methods by working effectively with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and Licensed Site Remediation Professionals (LSRPs);
- Coordinating remedial action plans on behalf of large, privately-owned, and regulated businesses including solid waste management and recycling facilities;
- Utilizing engineering and institutional controls and preparing and recording the appropriate deed notices; and
- Compliance with site investigation and remediation requirements, including mandatory and regulatory timeframes.
One of the larger redevelopment projects with significant environmental implications in which the firm was involved is the iPORT 440 International Business Center in Perth Amboy. The firm represented the Pert Amboy Redevelopment Agency and in that capacity, negotiated and prepared a redevelopment agreement to provide office, retail, technology/flex warehousing, a waterfront greenway and certain recreational property for public use and enjoyment. This brownfield site is listed on the New Jersey Portfield Site List for development for light manufacturing to serve the Port area. The $178,000,000 project, backed by Goldman Sachs, involved complex environmental cleanup and long-term liability issues related to the operation and maintenance of engineering and institutional controls which comprised the permanent remedy, as well as the renewal and funding of the requisite Remedial Action Permits and Remediation Financial Assurance, respectively.
Some of the additional projects in which the firm has been involved include the following:
- Acquisition of Contaminated Property: Partnering with transactional counsel and a technical team which included Licensed Site Remediation Professionals, Maraziti Falcon, LLP represented the City of Hoboken in connection with its due diligence and $30 million acquisition of the former BASF Facility for future use as a public resiliency park. The negotiation of the Purchase and Sale Agreement involved consideration of complex environmental issues, including the extensive environmental cleanup of emerging contaminants by Seller and the implementation of engineering and institutional controls; confirmation with the City’s LSRPs that the remediation was protective of human health and the environment; issuance of a Response Action Outcome by a Licensed Site Remediation Professional; transfer/modification of Remedial Action Permits with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection; future compliance with long term monitoring obligations; potential Natural Resource Damages; post closing access; and funding. Maraziti Falcon, LLP also played an integral role in obtaining Environmental Insurance to cover the remediation and certain liabilities associated with the cleanup for the City’s protection.
- In another matter wherein Joanne Vos, Esq. represented a private livery company acquiring contaminated property for use as a parking depot, a Purchase and Sale Agreement which included express provisions for compliance with the Industrial Site Recovery Act (ISRA), was executed. Said ISRA compliance involved the preparation and submission of numerous documents to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection including a Remediation Certification and a Remediation Trust Fund Agreement.
- Sale of Contaminated Property: Joanne Vos, Esq. represented a small business/property owner in connection with its almost $3 million sale of real property which transaction triggered certain obligations under the Industrial Site Recovery Act (ISRA). The matters at issue included pre-closing access, assessment of ISRA compliance, protection of environmental documents and data, compliance with environmental restrictions by Buyer, obtaining a Remedial Action Permit and posting the associated Financial Assurance with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, and the release and indemnification of Seller, as well as a subsequent lease back.
- Access Agreement: Joanne Vos, Esq. represented a small business/property owner against a Fortune 100 company seeking to obtain access to its property for purposes of conducting invasive and ongoing soil and groundwater sampling. An Access Agreement providing protections to the Grantor and reimbursement for the Grantor’s expenses associated with the request, including legal fees, was ultimately executed.
- Environmental Escrow Agreement: Joanne Vos, Esq., working with in house counsel and Licensed Site Remediation Professionals, represented a Lender in connection with the sale of certain contaminated commercial property which was in the process of being timely remediated. While the Lender was entitled to certain safe harbor protections under the law, the Lender required financial protection from an exaggerated cleanup process which had the potential to cost more than the value of the property. The parties entered into an Environmental Escrow Agreement which placed caps on pertinent financial responsibilities while not interfering with the completion of an appropriate remediation which would be protective of the human health and the environment.
- Direct Oversight: Joanne Vos, Esq. represented a property owner in a matter which was placed into direct oversight by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection for allegations of non-compliance. Direct oversight requires a remediating party to comply with certain enhanced financial and public outreach requirements, which can be onerous and cost prohibitive.
- Representation of LSRP: Joanne Vos, Esq. represented a (then, Temporary) Licensed Site Remediation Professional in one of the first matters to be brought before the Site Remediation Professional Licensing Board. The client required this highly specialized license in order to engage in certain aspects of the profession. After appearing before the Board, a reprimand, which did not prohibit the client from obtaining a permanent license, was issued.