The New York legislature passed an extension of the popular New York Brownfield credits as this year’s legislative session came to a close last week.  Governor Andrew Cuomo and legislative leaders had been hoping to pass a longer extension in conjunction with significant changes to the eligibility rules for the lucrative tangible property Brownfield credit, but efforts at reform stalled over a disagreement in providing additional bonding authority for the State’s hazardous waste cleanup program.   Without an extension the tax credit component of the New York Brownfield Cleanup Program is slated to expire by the end of 2015, and this legislation, if signed by the Governor, would extend the tax credits through March 2017.   Proponents of the extension have argued that without it new applicants would not enter the New York Brownfield Cleanup Program because the average time to achieve closure within the program would go beyond the end of 2015.  The extension would give the Governor, the legislature and stakeholders some breathing room to work through the more comprehensive reform of the program that eluded the government this year.

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Photo of Steven C. Russo Steven C. Russo

Steven C. Russo co-chairs the Environmental Practice and chairs the firm’s New York Environmental Practice. He focuses his practice on environmental law and litigation, environmental permitting, National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) review, toxic tort litigation, environmental crimes,

Steven C. Russo co-chairs the Environmental Practice and chairs the firm’s New York Environmental Practice. He focuses his practice on environmental law and litigation, environmental permitting, National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) review, toxic tort litigation, environmental crimes, Brownfields redevelopment, government, energy and the environmental aspects of land use and real estate law. Steven is equally experienced litigating in federal and state courts, as well as counseling his clients with regard to environmental liability risk and due diligence, permitting, Brownfields, and impact assessment and review. He also practices election and campaign finance law.

Prior to joining the firm, Steven was the Chief Legal Officer of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. There, he supervised approximately 90 attorneys in Albany, as well as the agency’s nine regional offices. He also supervised the agency’s legislative affairs department and Office of Environmental Justice. At the agency, Steven initiated a reform of the state’s environmental review regulations and assessment forms, completed the issuance of new power plant siting regulations pertaining to environmental justice and carbon emissions and revised the agency’s environmental audit policy.