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Tom DeLawrence and Lee Johnsey Discuss Similarities Between Opportunity Zones and Brownfields with Bloomberg Tax

Tom DeLawrence, partner in the firm’s Birmingham office and member of the Environmental & Natural Resources Practice, and Lee Johnsey, partner in the firm’s Birmingham office and member of the Real Estate Practice discuss synergies between tax incentives for opportunity zones and redevelopment of brownfields in a Bloomberg Tax article published on August 9, 2019.

According to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, the tax incentives apply to cleanup and assessments of brownfields if those activities qualify as “original use” of, or a “substantial improvement” to the property. Tom and Lee discuss the need for clarity and guidance from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) about how opportunity zones and brownfields can work together and continue to further their programmatic goals. 

Tom focuses his legal practice on federal and state environmental issues, with an emphasis on administrative, legislative, enforcement/litigation, and compliance matters under the Clean Water Act (CWA), Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). Tom has been recognized by The Best Lawyers in America and is a graduate of the Alabama State Bar Leadership Forum.

Lee’s practice areas include acquisition, development, opportunity zones, ownership, management and disposition of real estate, unsecured and secured lending, corporate matters, gaming finance and operation, and tax sales. Lee has been recognized as a Rising Star Lawyer by the Birmingham Business Journal and as a Top Attorney by Birmingham Magazine.

Attorneys in Balch’s Opportunity Zones Practice advise companies, developers and investors with counsel related to structuring and complying with the statutory requirements and regulations of the Opportunity Zones program.