The Ohio General Assembly recently enacted and funded new state programs to encourage redevelopment of sites, including both brownfield and non-brownfield sites. H.B. 110, the state’s main operating appropriations bill for FY 2021-2022, was signed into effect on June 30, 2021.  The bill includes three categories of funding that are available for brownfield and other site redevelopment:

1. BROWNFIELD REMEDIATION PROGRAM

H.B. 110 created a new Brownfield Remediation Program, within the Ohio Department of Development (DoD), which will award grants for the remediation of brownfield sites throughout Ohio.  The bill appropriates $350,000,000 in FY 2022 to support the program.  $1 million in funding is reserved for each county ($88 million statewide), while the rest of the funds will be available awarded on a first-come, first-served basis; grants may be up to 75% of a project’s total cost – thus a 25% match will be required.  Counties will have one calendar year (from the date of appropriation) to use the funds after which they become available for other projects statewide.  Additionally, the unencumbered, unexpended balance of the fund, at the end of FY 2022, will be reappropriated for the same purpose in FY 2023.  DoD will issue rules governing the program, and must ensure that the program is operational and accepting proposals for grants, by the end of 2021.

2. BUILDING DEMOLITION AND SITE REVITALIZATION PROGRAM

H.B. 110 also created a new Building Demolition and Site Revitalization Program, within DoD, which will award grants for the demolition of commercial and residential buildings and revitalization of surrounding properties on sites that are not brownfields.  The bill appropriates $150,000,000 in FY 2022 to support the program.  $500,000 in funding is reserved for each county ($44 million statewide), while the rest of the funds will be available awarded on a first-come, first-served basis; grants may be up to 75% of a project’s total cost, with a 25% required match.  Counties will have one calendar year (from the date of appropriation) to use the funds after which they become available for other projects statewide.  Additionally, the unencumbered, unexpended balance of the fund, at the end of FY 2022, will be reappropriated for the same purpose in FY 2023. DoD will issue rules governing the program, and must ensure that the program is operational and accepting proposals for grants, by the end of 2021.

3. BROWNFIELDS REVOLVING LOAN PROGRAM

H.B. 110 also appropriates $2,500,000 to the existing Brownfields Revolving Loan Program.  This program provides low interest loans to private and public entities for demolition, cleanup, and remediation projects on brownfield sites.  Funds for this purpose are received by DoD through competitive grants from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.  DoD administers the program in conjunction with the quasi-public Ohio Water Development Authority.