|SAME AS||SAME AS S05776|
|COSPNSR||Magnarelli, McDonald, Santabarbara, Steck|
|Add SS1608-a & 1608-b, N-PC L|
|Authorizes land banks to access real property prior to acquisition of the property and relates to the liabilities and exemptions from liability of land banks with relation to the acquisition and ownership of vacant, abandoned or tax delinquent real property.|
|05/28/2015||referred to local governments|
|06/09/2015||amend and recommit to local governments|
|06/09/2015||print number 7848a|
|01/06/2016||referred to local governments|
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NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY
MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION
submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
BILL NUMBER: A7848A SPONSOR: Lupardo (MS)
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the not-for-profit corporation law, in relation to authorizing land banks to access real property prior to acquisition of the property and to the liabilities and exemptions from liability of land banks with relation to the acquisition and ownership of vacant, abandoned or tax delinquent real property   PURPOSE: The purpose of this bill is to provide land banks with access to properties prior to the transfer of ownership to assess envi- ronmental conditions. The bill also provides land banks with liability protections from environmental conditions and contaminations after the transfer of ownership that they would currently be held responsible for.   SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section 1 of the bill adds sections 1608-a and 1608-b to § 1608 of the not-for-profit corporation law. § 1608-a relates to access to real prop- erty to acquisition. § 1608-b relates to liability exemption and defenses. Section 2 is the effective date.   JUSTIFICATION: In 2011, the Land Bank act was signed into law in order to help municipalities address blight and vacant properties. Since the land banks have started operation, a number of concerns have been identified that have impeded the work of the land banks. Land banks typically acquire abandoned or tax delinquent properties from absent or uncooperative owners. Often, they are unable to legally access such properties prior to purchase and therefore cannot perform due dili- gence into the environmental condition of such parcel prior to owner- ship. That potentially prevents land banks from asserting statutory defenses and exposes them to liability for the costs of remediation. Land banks are tasked with acquiring vacant, abandoned and delinquent properties to facilitate their return to productive use, In the event a land bank acquires environmentally contaminated real property, the public assets of a land bank are potentially exposed to liability which could include significant remediation costs. This bill will provide land banks with temporary incidents of ownership sufficient to authorize such access prior to transfer, without incurring liability based upon ownership. It will also provide liability protections to land banks similar to those which are already available to municipalities, as land banks are not typical voluntary buyers.   LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New bill.   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: Undetermined.   EFFECTIVE DATE: The act shall take effect immediately.
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STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 7848--A 2015-2016 Regular Sessions IN ASSEMBLY May 28, 2015 ___________ Introduced by M. of A. LUPARDO, MAGNARELLI, McDONALD, SANTABARBARA -- read once and referred to the Committee on Local Governments -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee AN ACT to amend the not-for-profit corporation law, in relation to authorizing land banks to access real property prior to acquisition of the property and to the liabilities and exemptions from liability of land banks with relation to the acquisition and ownership of vacant, abandoned or tax delinquent real property The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem- bly, do enact as follows: 1 Section 1. The not-for-profit corporation law is amended by adding two 2 new sections 1608-a and 1608-b to read as follows: 3 § 1608-a. Access to real property prior to acquisition. 4 Notwithstanding any general, special or local law or ordinance to the 5 contrary: 6 (a) To carry out the powers, duties and goals identified in this arti- 7 cle, land banks shall be authorized, in accordance with the procedure 8 described in this section, to access any tax delinquent parcel of real 9 property that the land bank intends to acquire from any foreclosing 10 governmental unit, in order to determine the physical condition of any 11 buildings or structures on such parcel, or to assess the environmental 12 condition of such parcel. If deemed appropriate, such access shall 13 include the ability to engage an environmental professional to conduct 14 all appropriate inquiries into the former use and ownership of such 15 property, in order to determine whether hazardous materials, hazardous 16 substances or other contaminants were previously released or disposed of 17 on such parcel, consistent with good commercial and customary practice. 18 (b) Following the commencement of a proceeding to foreclose a tax lien 19 by the taxing district having any right, title or interest in or lien 20 upon any parcel, a land bank may, upon not less than twenty days' notice EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD11251-03-5A. 7848--A 2 1 to all parties having right, title, or interest in, or lien upon such 2 parcel, move, at a special term in the court in which the foreclosure 3 proceeding was initiated, or if such proceeding is an administrative 4 proceeding pursuant to the provisions of a county charter, city charter, 5 administrative code, or special law when applicable under section eleven 6 hundred four of the real property tax law, then such motion shall be at 7 a special term of the supreme court in the county in which such parcel 8 is located, for an order granting the land bank the temporary incidents 9 of ownership of such parcel for the sole purpose of enabling the land 10 bank and its agents to enter the parcel to conduct visual inspection and 11 such further environmental investigation of the parcel as the land bank 12 deems necessary in order to determine whether hazardous materials, 13 hazardous substances or other contaminants were previously released or 14 disposed of on such parcel. Such inspection may include invasive test- 15 ing, including but not limited to sampling of surface and subsurface 16 soil and/or groundwater, as is considered by an environmental profes- 17 sional to be necessary and consistent with good commercial and customary 18 practice for conducting all appropriate inquiries into the former use 19 and condition of such parcel. Following any such invasive testing, the 20 land bank shall return the parcel, to the extent practicable, to the 21 condition it was in before the investigation. 22 (c) Unless prior to the return date of the motion brought pursuant to 23 this section the property has been redeemed by the party having the 24 right of redemption, the court shall enter an order granting such relief 25 to the land bank. Such order shall be granted upon such terms and condi- 26 tions as the court shall deem just and proper to permit the inspection 27 to occur unhindered as well as to protect the interests of all other 28 parties having an ownership interest in the parcel. Such order shall act 29 as a stay to the foreclosure action on such parcel of property until the 30 inspection has been completed and a report of the investigation has been 31 filed with the court. 32 (d) Such temporary incidents of ownership in the parcel by the land 33 bank shall not be sufficient or construed to constitute actual ownership 34 of the parcel for purposes of any applicable environmental law which 35 confers liability for damages caused by the release of any hazardous 36 material, substance or contaminant, unless such release was actually 37 caused by the land bank. 38 (e) Within thirty days following the completion of the inspection, 39 including receipt of a final report received from an environmental 40 professional conducting the inspection, if any, the land bank shall file 41 any such report, or a description of the results of the inspection if no 42 formal environmental investigation of the parcel was undertaken, with 43 the court on notice to the court and all other parties of record, and 44 the stay of the foreclosure shall be lifted (unless lifted earlier by a 45 prior court order), and all incidents of temporary ownership of the land 46 bank that was awarded to such land bank, shall cease to exist, and noth- 47 ing in this subdivision shall preclude the land bank that conducted the 48 inspection from making a determination not to acquire the parcel, or 49 preclude the taxing jurisdiction that commenced the foreclosure action, 50 from withdrawing the parcel from foreclosure pursuant to section eleven 51 hundred thirty-eight of the real property tax law or pursuant to the 52 provisions of a county charter, city charter, administrative code, or 53 special law when applicable under section eleven hundred four of the 54 real property tax law. 55 § 1608-b. Liability exemption and defenses.A. 7848--A 3 1 Notwithstanding any general, special or local law or ordinance to the 2 contrary, in carrying out the powers, duties and goals identified in 3 this article with respect to the acquisition and ownership of vacant, 4 abandoned or tax delinquent real property, no land bank organized pursu- 5 ant to this title shall incur liability from any statutory claims of the 6 state relating to the presence, release or disposal of hazardous waste, 7 hazardous substances, petroleum or other contaminants on real property, 8 by virtue of its acquisition and ownership of any property contaminated 9 by such hazardous waste, hazardous substances, petroleum or other 10 contaminants, provided that the following conditions are met: 11 (a) Such property constituted vacant, abandoned or tax delinquent 12 property and was acquired by the land bank to effect the purposes 13 described in section sixteen hundred one of this article; 14 (b) The release or disposal of the hazardous waste, hazardous 15 substances, petroleum or other contaminants occurred before the acquisi- 16 tion of the property by the land bank; 17 (c) The land bank did not cause or contribute to the release or 18 threatened release of the hazardous waste or petroleum from or onto the 19 property, or generate, transport, or dispose of such hazardous waste or 20 petroleum, or arrange for, or cause the generation, transportation, or 21 disposal of hazardous waste, from or onto the site; and 22 (d) Such property was acquired by the land bank either directly, 23 through foreclosure of a tax lien, or, was acquired from any public 24 corporation, as defined in section sixty-five of the general 25 construction law, following the involuntary acquisition of ownership and 26 control by such public corporation, including but not limited to: 27 (1) Acquisitions by a public corporation in its sovereign capacity, 28 including but not limited to acquisitions pursuant to abandonment 29 proceedings or bequest; 30 (2) Acquisitions by a public corporation, or its agent, acting as a 31 conservator or receiver pursuant to a clear and direct statutory mandate 32 or regulatory authority; 33 (3) Acquisitions of assets through foreclosure and its equivalents, or 34 otherwise, by a public corporation in the course of administering a 35 loan, loan guarantee, tax lien, or tax forbearance agreement, or loan 36 insurance program; or 37 (4) Acquisitions by a public corporation pursuant to seizure, injunc- 38 tion, condemnation, or forfeiture authority; provided that such owner- 39 ship or control is not retained primarily for investment purposes. 40 § 2. This act shall take effect immediately.