Sarah Jarboe presents on Kentucky Brownsfields program

by Mandy Hicks

Sarah Jarboe
Sarah Jarboe

Partner Sarah Jarboe gave an informative presentation recently on opportunities for relief from environmental liability under the Kentucky Brownfields Redevelopment Program.

Her presentation was part of a free, day-long workshop, “Eyesore to Asset: Redeveloping Distressed Properties,” offered by Kentucky Division of Compliance Assistance and the City of Bowling Green. The workshop was sponsored by EnSafe, an environmental consulting firm.

Kentucky’s Brownfield Property Redevelopment and Reuse Program offers unique protections and funding opportunities for businesses, individuals, and governments that purchase commercial or industrial properties that are contaminated or perceived to be contaminated.  Lenders who need to foreclose on such properties can also use the program to avoid being saddled with cleanup costs for pre-foreclosure contamination.

“Kentucky’s brownfields program is one of the best in the nation. It removes many of the obstacles that traditionally hinder redevelopment of properties that are often ideally located and attractively priced. Purchasers can secure a Notice of Eligibility before closing that provides assurance that the State of Kentucky will not hold buyers who comply with the program liable for correcting environmental contamination that occurred before the purchase. Even owners who purchased property before the enacting statute was passed can be eligible for liability protections. Anyone who owns or is interested in purchasing ‘tainted’ property should investigate their eligibility for Kentucky’s program.”

There are an estimated 8,000 brownfields across Kentucky. They include sites such as old gas stations, mine-scarred lands, abandoned factories, old schools and hospitals and meth labs. The Kentucky brownfield program offers a process to enable development of these problem properties without undertaking liability for the new owners.

About Sarah Jarboe

Sarah Jarboe is a partner at ELPO. She handles environmental law and civil litigation for ELPO. She served as Chair of the Environment, Energy and Resources law section of the Kentucky Bar Association in 2016-2017, sat on the American Bar Association‘s Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources (SEER) Fall 2016 and 2017 Conference Planning Committees, and participated in SEER’s 2014-2015 Leadership Development Program.

Sarah is a graduate of Vanderbilt Law School, where she received the Scholastic Excellence Award in Environmental Law in 2010 for achieving the highest grade in her class and served as Managing Editor of the Environmental Law and Policy Annual Review Journal. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Louisville. Sarah joined ELPO in 2013 after serving as a law clerk for two years for Chief Justice John D. Minton of the Kentucky Supreme Court.