This November, California voters will decide whether commercial and industrial properties will lose their Proposition 13 protection against property tax reassessment. In The Split-Roll Initiative is Posted to Rock California’s Property Tax System, colleagues Craig A. Becker, Richard E. Nielsen and Breann E. Robowski explain.
The pandemic’s financial impact adds another layer of complexity to REITs authorizing, declaring and paying dividends under Maryland law. In “REIT Dividends in the Wake of the Coronavirus,” colleagues Jeffrey B. Grill, Robert S. Logan, Ryan S. Brewer, Ella M. Lvov and Jessie W. Friend discuss what Maryland REITs should consider using the tools at their disposal to structure distributions in a manner that preserves cash.
In 731 Market Street Owner LLC v. City and County of San Francisco (June 18, 2020), California appellate court affirms that local realty transfer tax does not apply when leasehold has a remaining term of 35 years or more. In “California Court of Appeal Concludes Transfer Tax Not Applicable to Purchase of Realty Encumbered by Long-Term Leasehold,” colleagues Craig A. Becker, Breann E. Robowski, Richard E. Nielsen, and Robert P. Merten III discuss an overview of a recent ruling.
In responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, CIOs across all industries may decide to undertake IT initiatives to enhance business resiliency and capabilities while containing costs. Some of these initiatives may involve large, complex migrations and implementations of technologies that require the assistance of experienced systems integrators. In “Post-Pandemic Contracting with Systems Integrators,” colleagues Jeffrey D. Hutchings and Craig A. de Ridder discuss the key takeaways that CIOs need to consider before implementing new systems.
On June 15, 2020, the California Legislature passed Governor Newsom’s proposed tax legislation to raise additional income tax revenue to assist in balancing the California budget. (AB 85). The Senate and Assembly each achieved the two-thirds majority vote required for California tax increases (27-11 in the Senate and 56-20 in the Assembly), with Gov. Newsom expected to sign the legislation later this week. In “California Legislature Passes Governor Newsom’s Proposal to Suspend California Net Operating Loss Deductions and Limit Tax Credits during 2020 – 2022,” colleagues Jeffrey M. Vesely, Craig A. Becker, Carley Roberts and Breann E. Robowski discuss the tax legislation’s two principal components.
Historically, “Act of God” was defined to encompass sickness, but the concept has evolved, and it is unclear whether, in the absence of an express reference to epidemics in a force majeure clause, courts will find COVID-19 to be an Act of God. In “Tour de Force: What Constitutes an ‘Act of God,’ and Other Developments in Force Majeure Law,” colleagues Andrew C. Smith, Anne C. Lefever, Brian L. Beckerman, Adam R. Poliner, Stephanie S. Gomez and Colin Davis discuss the contours of the term “Act of God” and briefly cover new developments in case law regarding the doctrine of force majeure.
A recent Executive Order by President Trump directs agencies to expedite reviews of infrastructure projects based on the emergency provisions of several key federal environmental laws. In “President’s Executive Order to Expedite Environmental Reviews of Infrastructure Pushes the Envelope on the Interpretation of Emergency Authorities,” colleagues Sheila McCafferty Harvey, Reza Zarghamee, Mona E. Dajani and Alex Peyton discuss how these emergency provisions have been seldom invoked in the past, and when they have, the purpose often has been to fast-track immediate response actions to address environmental concerns, as opposed to facilitating infrastructure projects years in the making.
Co-head of Pillsbury’s Projects team, partner Robert A. James, and Environmental counsel Stella Pulman co-authored the article “Oil Regulation 2020: United States,” in which they describe the key commercial aspects of the U.S. oil sector; national energy policies; major laws concerning production activities, reservoir ownership and mineral rights; environmental, health and safety regulations; and other issues affecting the oil industry.
As we approach the next phase of the COVID-19 pandemic, many states and cities around the country have proposed safety measures for construction projects during the pandemic. These guidelines range from a single page of suggestions to multipage requirements handed down by state public health officers. In “DC Real Estate and Construction Committee Issues Recommendations as DC Prepares for Phased Reopening,” John Chamberlain discusses the ways that the District of Columbia has taken to implement a community-driven, “one size does not fit all” approach to establishing recommendations for reopening.
From mask-wearing to physical separation to staggered schedules and crowding-related transit incentives, implementing the new CDC guidelines may reshape office life. In “Updated CDC Guidelines Impact Business Districts, Office Buildings and Their Tenants, and Users,” colleagues Caroline A. Harcourt, Shani Rivaux, Jacob A. Axelrod and Amanda G. Halter outline how these guidelines contemplate a cooperative relationship between building owners and their employer tenants.