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Proposed Transfer Tax Amendments Narrow Lease Exception for Renewal Terms

In November 2011, the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue proposed amendments to the realty transfer tax regulations that could profoundly change the transfer tax treatment of lease extension options.

Marcellus Shale Drilling Raises Issues for Landowners and Their Mortgage Lenders

As leasing and drilling activity by oil and gas companies moves full speed ahead, oil and gas producers and mortgage lenders have significant potential issues to address involving mortgages (or potential mortgages) on the property to be leased. Typically, the terms of a mortgage (1) require a landowner to obtain prior permission from a lender before entering into a lease and (2) prohibit violations of environmental laws and the presence of hazardous materials on the property. We have seen numerous cases where landowners and producers did not get mortgage lender prior approval for an oil and gas lease, putting the landowner in default of its mortgage and subjecting the producer to the risk of having its lease voided or foreclosed upon.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court Holds That The Surface Mining Conservation and Reclamation Act Does Not Preempt Local Zoning Setback Provisions

In Hoffman Mining Company Inc. v. Zoning Hearing Board of Adams Township, 2011 WL 5865672 (Pa. Nov. 23, 2011), the Pennsylvania Supreme Court unanimously held that the Pennsylvania Surface Mining Conservation and Reclamation Act ("SMCRA") does not preempt a municipal zoning ordinance's setback provisions.

Buchanan Hosts DCED Officials; Real Estate Financing Opportunities Discussed

At a fall luncheon for more than 100 of its clients, Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney's Real Estate and State Government Relations Group partnered to host officials from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania's Department of Community and Economic Development. Rich Hudic, executive deputy director of the DCED, and Scott Dunkelberger, the director of the Center for Business Financing at the DCED, presented a program focused on commonwealth financing enhancements for real estate development projects.

Commercial Tenant Permitted To Extend Lease Despite Late Notice to Landlord

In 135 East 57th Street LLC v. Daffy's Inc, the Appellate Division of the New York Supreme Court held that a commercial tenant's late notice to its landlord of its intent to renew a lease should be excused on the equitable basis of fundamental fairness.