|From:||CPEO Moderator <email@example.com>|
|Date:||26 Mar 2001 18:11:39 -0000|
|Subject:||[CPEO-BIF] Emeryville Scores Important Victory in Brownfield Redevelopment Leg|
Monday March 26, 12:30 pm Eastern Time Press Release Emeryville Scores Important Victory in Brownfield Redevelopment Legal Challenge (Excerpts) To read the complete Press release go to: http://biz.yahoo.com/bw/010326/0409.html SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--March 26, 2001--Emeryville, Calif., a city of approximately 7,000 bordering San Francisco Bay, Oakland and Berkeley, scored an important victory in Federal District Court in San Francisco last week in a decision validating a key component of Emeryville's award-winning brownfield redevelopment program. According to the District Court, Emeryville's acquisition of contaminated property under eminent-domain authority did not make the city partly liable for the cost of cleaning up 75 years of industrial pollution. The ruling thus cleared the way for the city to pursue joint and several liability against the polluters for cleanup costs, interest and attorneys' fees totaling approximately $13 million. The District Court also held that under California's Polanco Redevelopment Act, the city would enjoy the same strong presumptions enjoyed by federal and state regulators who clean up sites under the federal Superfund statute passed by Congress in 1980. The focal point in the case is a 20-acre site formerly occupied by a pesticide plant, an iron-oxide manufacturing plant and a drum- recycling operation. Emeryville is redeveloping the site with approximately 300,000 square feet of retail and entertainment uses, 350 for-sale residential units and a 300-room hotel. Redevelopment was stalled, however, by the need to investigate and clean up more than 25,000 cubic yards of soil contaminated with arsenic and 50 other potentially hazardous chemicals, and to prevent contaminated groundwater at the site from damaging San Francisco Bay. The city began investigating the site in early 1997 and late that year invoked its authority under the Polanco Redevelopment Act, a Superfund-like statute that enables California redevelopment agencies to expedite the cleanup process. The city subsequently acquired the contaminated parcels through negotiations and litigation under its eminent-domain authority. In August 1999, as on-site cleanup began, Emeryville filed a lawsuit in Federal District Court in San Francisco alleging that historic operators at the site were responsible for the entire cost of the cleanup. The city recovered $7.1 million through mediation and a settlement approved by the District Court last month. The decision last week, rendered by the Honorable William H. Alsup of the Northern District of California, accepted Cox, Castle & Nicholson's argument on behalf of Emeryville that the city did not become liable for a portion of the cleanup costs by virtue of acquiring the property for redevelopment or by maintaining a public road on the site since the 1940s. For more information about Cox, Castle & Nicholson, visit the firm's Web site at www.ccnlaw.com. For more information about Emeryville's brownfield program, visit the city's Web site at www.emeryville.ca.us. Contact: Cox, Castle & Nicholson LLP, Los Angeles Nancy Newman, 310/284-2222 firstname.lastname@example.org or Sonnonstine Public Relations, Long Beach, Calif. Linda Sonnonstine, 562/434-8175 email@example.com ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ To read CPEO's archived Brownfields messages visit http://www.cpeo.org/lists/brownfields If this email has been forwarded to you and you'd like to subscribe, please send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ____________________________________________________________ T O P I C A -- Learn More. Surf Less. Newsletters, Tips and Discussions on Topics You Choose. http://www.topica.com/partner/tag01
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