The Brownfield Tools in Michigan are some of the most powerful economic development tools available, leveraging investment, creating jobs and improving communities across the State. Since Michigan's Brownfield Redevelopment Financing Act (PA 381) was passed in 1996, many stakeholders "including regulators, legislators, attorneys, bankers, developers and consultants" have periodically convened to amend the act, continuously improving its ability to support the redevelopment of brownfield sites. The most recent changes to the Brownfield legislation became effective after the culmination of several years of work on April 5, 2017. Additionally, in June of 2017, Act 381 was amended to include the development of Transformational Brownfield Plans for larger-scale projects.
Many of the most recent amendments to Act 381 included incorporating earlier recommendations, program updates and policies, and streamlining the Act with respect to changes that had been made to other environmental regulations, i.e., Part 201 and Part 213 of NREPA (1994 PA 451, as amended). Highlights of the changes have been provided below.
One of the primary Brownfield Tools used on redevelopment projects is tax increment financing through a Brownfield Plan. The tax increment that results from new investment on an eligible property can be captured over time to reimburse certain costs associated with eligible activities.
The recent amendments expanded the list of eligible environmental activities, now referred to as "Department Specific Activities", which include Baseline Environmental Assessments, Due Care Activities, Response Activities and other environment-related actions.
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