Pilot Program: The Redevelopment Now Option for Expediting High-Value, High-Public Benefit Projects
The Brownfields Program has been exceedingly popular and has had very high demand for brownfields agreements. With such high demand and with a fixed level of federal funding available for staffing project managers, there as has been an increasingly large work load on the project managers resulting in a lengthening of the time to obtain brownfields agreement. So while the program is putting out greater numbers of agreements each year, it also has even more projects waiting in the wings. However, the Program recognizes that minimizing the time to obtain a brownfields agreement also minimizes the time-value-of-money costs for the developer. We know that minimizing these costs can be central to the overall project success and that such costs are usually significantly higher than the programmatic fees. In fact, numerous prospective developers have queried the program to determine if additional project managers could be hired if they themselves would provide resources for such staff because it saves them both time and money. In response to these requests, the Program has been developing a pilot program to do just that whereby there are new project managers that have been hired using the resources provided by voluntary prospective developers in this situation. The pilot is known as the “Redevelopment Now Option.”
Under this option the Program uses a significantly higher fee to hire project managers that have just three or so projects so that they can respond throughout the brownfields agreement process on a zero-queue basis. The fee for this option is $30,000, instead of the standard $5,500. The increased fee pays for the nearly project-specific project manager as well as additional Program attorney resources for the Program to avoid legal bottlenecks in the negotiation and production of final brownfields agreements. The Program has piloted this work on several 2009 projects with positive results. Project that choose this option are taken from eligibility to a final product bypassing the normal project queue along the way. As a result, developers in the pilot have saved significant financing costs and/or have met tight deadlines required for project financing. If you think you might be interested in the Redevelopment Now Option for your project, please let us know.
Acceptance into this pilot program option is assured if there are few enough projects in the Program at the time of application to maintain zero queue response for existing Redevelopment Now pilot projects. Slots for additional projects in the pilot program will be filled in order of the public benefit inherent in the project. The Program may also hire additional program manager capacity for this program if it sees sufficient demand. The prospective developer interested must sign a Redevelopment Now Fee Consent Document and provide a $30,000 fee payment (in lieu of, not in addition to, the regular $5,500 fee). Upon receipt of the fee check and the signed Consent Document, the Program will assess the project for brownfields eligibility in an expedited manner.
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Brownfields Program • Mail Service Center 1646, Raleigh, North Carolina 27699-1646 • (919) 707-8383