Each month BizWest invites a business leader to reflect on the issues affecting his or her industry. This month, BizWest asked Jennifer Peters to discuss issues facing her firm and the professional role she plays in the community.
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If so, and you own property on which tenants engage in certain regulated activities, you should consider consulting a specialist for a little preventive care – legal, not medical. Controlling the activities of these tenants can draw enforcement against the property owner when the tenants’ operations raise environmental compliance issues, as a recent federal case illustrates.
The case involved a sportfishing group that sued an industrial park owner for Clean Water Act (“CWA”) violations caused by discharges of polluted storm water. The fact that any pollutants in the storm water were put there by the tenants did not protect the landlord. The court held that “owners and/or operators who have sufficient control over a facility can be held liable under the CWA even if they do not themselves perform the industrial activities that create the pollutants in the storm water discharge.” Here, the landlord owned and controlled the storm water drainage system from which the pollutants were released.
Operations requiring storm water permits are not uncommon, and can include transportation, food processing, and recycling businesses, as well as construction activities. The requirement can also apply to other operations on a case-by-case basis.
Moreover, this potential enforcement trap for landlords goes beyond CWA concerns. Owners who exert control over their tenants’ waste management practices may also risk enforcement. In recent years, retail outlets like hardware stores, pharmacies, and even groceries have been targeted by hazardous waste enforcement actions. This is because many common products like drain cleaners, over-the-counter drugs, and hand sanitizers can be considered hazardous wastes under certain circumstances.
Thus, a tenant’s business may not necessarily raise a red flag. Landlords should consider how monitoring protocols or proper lease provisions could provide protection from the environmental afflictions of their tenants, and save the expense of a pound of cure.
Otis, Bedingfield & Peters, LLC is pleased to announce that attorney Jennifer Lynn Peters has been certified as a member of Lawyers of Distinction.
The Lawyers of Distinction is recognized as the fastest growing community of distinguished lawyers in the United States. Membership is limited to the top 10% of attorneys in the United States. Members are accepted based upon objective evaluation of an attorney’s qualifications, license, reputation, experience, and disciplinary history.
Widely known for organizing the 19th Judicial District Bench-Bar Committee’s Annual Nuts & Bolts CLE, now in its 14th year, Jennifer routinely gives presentations on real estate law, business law, and ethics. She also volunteers as a mediator for the Weld County courts, and was the recipient of the Weld County Bar Association’s Andrew Borg Award recognizing pro bono service in 2009. Ms. Peters was named a Rising Star by Colorado Super Lawyers Magazine in both 2011 and 2012, and is a member of the board of directors of CREW Northern Colorado and the Weld Food Bank. Jennifer was inducted into the 40 Under 40 Hall of Fame by the Northern Colorado Business Report. She was awarded a certificate of completion of the Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) Leadership Program.
“It is a tremendous honor and I am humbled to be selected for this certification. It is great to work with a talented and supportive team of lawyers and staff at our firm that make it possible for me to support our Northern Colorado community and provide such a high level of legal services to our clients,” said Jennifer Lynn Peters.
Lawyers of Distinction does not offer membership to more than 10% of attorneys in any given state. Lawyers of Distinction uses it own independent criteria, including both objective and subjective factors in determining if an attorney can be recognized as being within the top 10% of attorneys in the United States in their respective field. This designation is based upon the proprietary analysis of the Lawyers of Distinction organization alone, and is not intended to be endorsed by any of the 50 United States Bar Associations or The District of Columbia Bar Association. Please see the website www.lawyersofdistinction.com for further details concerning membership qualification.
Otis, Bedingfield & Peters, LLC provides real estate law and business law services throughout Northern Colorado. OBP has 16 attorneys spread across its two offices in Greeley and Loveland. For more information, contact Jennifer Lynn Peters at firstname.lastname@example.org or 970-330-6700 or visit www.nocoattorneys.com.
At Otis, Bedingfield & Peters, LLC, we believe every client deserves the highest quality legal services from a law firm that is part of their community. We know we can’t be everything to everyone everywhere. That’s why we focus on providing only real estate law and business law services in the Northern Colorado region. Our commitment to real estate law and business law and our Northern Colorado community permeates everything we do. We value personal relationships, knowledge, integrity, trust and loyalty. Read More >>
Otis, Bedingfield & Peters, LLC
1812 56th Avenue, Greeley, Colorado 80634
Phone: (970) 330-6700 | Fax: (970) 330-2969
Phone: (970) 663-7300 | Fax: (970) 797-1399