September 1, 2008
 
Itís Simply Poor Due Diligence
Are you placing time bombs in your files?
 
I recently received a phone call from an occasional banking client that had put herself in a bit of a jam. The client was in the process of financing an old light industrial site in a re-developing urban area of Denver. The client, who for the purposes of this article will be referred to as Ms. Jenkins, had bought in on a sales pitch from a representative of a prominent national regulatory government agency database firm. The pitch was basically, "Make your environmental due diligence cheap and easy by ordering one of our computer reports." The so-called "desk-top review" had apparently been originally developed in response to limited Fannie Mae refinancing requirements of existing loans. However, the database company had unilaterally expanded this product as a broad offering to the marketplace to be used with new loans and began promoting its wholesale use in the lending community. Letís take a quick look at the desk-top review product and then weíll get back to Ms. Jenkinsí dilemma...
 
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August 15, 2006
 
The New EPA AAI Rules Overview
 
By this time, most of our clients are aware that the Environmental Protection Agency published their new rules and guidelines for all appropriate inquiry (AAI) relating to Environmental due-diligence practices in November 2005. Just this past spring, ASTM published their companion practices protocol entitled E-1527-05 "Standard Practice for Environmental Site Assessments; Phase I Environmental Site Assessment Process". This companion piece published by the ASTM largely mirrored the previously published EPA protocol. As dictated by the EPA and later referenced by ASTM, the effective date for the new standards will be November 1, 2006. Until that date, the previously existing ASTM E 1527-2000 standard will remain in full force and effect and assure the consultants and their clients continuing CERCLA liability protection. The manner, in which our individual clients will approach the environmental due-diligence process after the effective date, will be determined by incorporating the new changes into the individual lendersí environmental policies, as necessary to accomplish their business objectives and satisfy their own risk tolerance...
 
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May 15, 2005
 
EPA Proposes AAI Rule
 
On August 26, 2004, the US Environmental Protection Agency published the proposed "all appropriate inquiries" rule in the Federal Register. If promulgated, EPA's rule will mark the first time that environmental due diligence is codified in a federal regulation - Part 312 - Standards and Practices for All Appropriate Inquiries....
 
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May 15, 2005
 
Asbestos!! Kill the Messenger!!
A CASE STUDY IN ENVIRONMENTAL LIABILITY
 
In the late 1980s and continuing into the mid 1990s, the presence of asbestos in a subject property building was tantamount to "the kiss of death" to a real estate transaction. Whether or not the asbestos containing materials were in sound and solid condition or friable did not seem to matter, lenders wanted no part of it....
 
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