Environmental Assessment of Real Estate Transfers

Policy

Before the University acquires any real estate, the department, division, or unit sponsoring or initiating the acquisition is responsible for ensuring that the University obtains disclosures concerning various environmental attributes of the real estate property and makes a reasonable investigation of potential environmental liabilities associated with the property prior to consummating the acquisition.

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Purpose

This policy ensures that the University does not unintentionally acquire real estate property subject to environmental liabilities, regulations, or requirements and creates procedures for acquiring and evaluating information concerning potential environmental liabilities prior to the acquisition of real estate property.

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Authority and Responsibility

Environmental Health and Safety is responsible for:

  • Contacting environmental consultants when an environmental assessment is needed;
  • Managing consultants that are hired to conduct environmental assessments for the University;
  • Obtaining and reviewing sample results from the environmental assessments; and
  • Providing recommendations to the Office of Legal Counsel about the transfer of the property.

Departments are responsible for:

  • Providing Environmental Health and Safety with property information; and
  • Funding environmental assessments deemed necessary by Environmental Health and Safety, and agreed to by all concerned parties.

Office of Legal Counsel is responsible for:

  • Reviewing recommendations provided by Environmental Health and Safety regarding the acquisition of real estate property; and
  • Providing the final approval for the acquisition of real estate property.

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Procedure

Prior to any acquisition of real estate property, the procedures listed below shall be followed.

  1. Representatives of the University shall request that the transferor of real estate property complete the Environmental Disclosure Statement for Transfer of Real Estate Property at least 90 days prior to any closing of a real estate property transfer. Copies of the completed Statement shall be provided to Environmental Health and Safety, Risk Management, and the Office of Legal Counsel for evaluation.
  2. An on-site visual inspection of the premises shall be made by representative(s) of the office acquiring the property on the University’s behalf and a representative from Environmental Health and Safety and/or Risk Management.
  3. If the University is interested in the property after the visual inspection, a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment will be required. Environmental Health and Safety will contact a consultant to complete the Phase I Environmental Site Assessment and will review the results when the assessment is completed.
  4. If, based on the results of the Phase I assessment, Environmental Health and Safety determines that further investigation of the property is necessary, a Phase II Environmental Site Assessment will be required. Environmental Health and Safety will contact a consultant to complete the Phase II Environmental Site Assessment and will review the results when the assessment is completed.
  5. Environmental Health and Safety will provide recommendations to the Office of Legal Counsel after reviewing reports from the environmental assessments. No closing or transfer shall occur until the Office of Legal Counsel has approved the acquisition.

Reviewed: July 30, 2015

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