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e-CFR data is current as of August 6, 2020

Title 40Chapter ISubchapter IPart 280Subpart I → §280.210


Title 40: Protection of Environment
PART 280—TECHNICAL STANDARDS AND CORRECTIVE ACTION REQUIREMENTS FOR OWNERS AND OPERATORS OF UNDERGROUND STORAGE TANKS (UST)
Subpart I—Lender Liability


§280.210   Participation in management.

The term “participating in the management of an UST or UST system” means that, subsequent to the effective date of this subpart, December 6, 1995, the holder is engaging in decisionmaking control of, or activities related to, operation of the UST or UST system, as defined herein.

(a) Actions that are participation in management. (1) Participation in the management of an UST or UST system means, for purposes of this subpart, actual participation by the holder in the management or control of decisionmaking related to the operation of an UST or UST system. Participation in management does not include the mere capacity or ability to influence or the unexercised right to control UST or UST system operations. A holder is participating in the management of the UST or UST system only if the holder either:

(i) Exercises decisionmaking control over the operational (as opposed to financial or administrative) aspects of the UST or UST system, such that the holder has undertaken responsibility for all or substantially all of the management of the UST or UST system; or

(ii) Exercises control at a level comparable to that of a manager of the borrower's enterprise, such that the holder has assumed or manifested responsibility for the overall management of the enterprise encompassing the day-to-day decisionmaking of the enterprise with respect to all, or substantially all, of the operational (as opposed to financial or administrative) aspects of the enterprise.

(2) Operational aspects of the enterprise relate to the use, storage, filling, or dispensing of petroleum contained in an UST or UST system, and include functions such as that of a facility or plant manager, operations manager, chief operating officer, or chief executive officer. Financial or administrative aspects include functions such as that of a credit manager, accounts payable/receivable manager, personnel manager, controller, chief financial officer, or similar functions. Operational aspects of the enterprise do not include the financial or administrative aspects of the enterprise, or actions associated with environmental compliance, or actions undertaken voluntarily to protect the environment in accordance with applicable requirements in this part or applicable state requirements in those states that have been delegated authority by EPA to administer the UST program pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 6991c and 40 CFR part 281.

(b) Actions that are not participation in management pre-foreclosure. (1) Actions at the inception of the loan or other transaction. No act or omission prior to the time that indicia of ownership are held primarily to protect a security interest constitutes evidence of participation in management within the meaning of this subpart. A prospective holder who undertakes or requires an environmental investigation (which could include a site assessment, inspection, and/or audit) of the UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located (in which indicia of ownership are to be held), or requires a prospective borrower to clean up contamination from the UST or UST system or to comply or come into compliance (whether prior or subsequent to the time that indicia of ownership are held primarily to protect a security interest) with any applicable law or regulation, is not by such action considered to be participating in the management of the UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located.

(2) Loan policing and work out. Actions that are consistent with holding ownership indicia primarily to protect a security interest do not constitute participation in management for purposes of this subpart. The authority for the holder to take such actions may, but need not, be contained in contractual or other documents specifying requirements for financial, environmental, and other warranties, covenants, conditions, representations or promises from the borrower. Loan policing and work out activities cover and include all such activities up to foreclosure, exclusive of any activities that constitute participation in management.

(i) Policing the security interest or loan. (A) A holder who engages in policing activities prior to foreclosure will remain within the exemption provided that the holder does not together with other actions participate in the management of the UST or UST system as provided in §280.210(a). Such policing actions include, but are not limited to, requiring the borrower to clean up contamination from the UST or UST system during the term of the security interest; requiring the borrower to comply or come into compliance with applicable federal, state, and local environmental and other laws, rules, and regulations during the term of the security interest; securing or exercising authority to monitor or inspect the UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located (including on-site inspections) in which indicia of ownership are maintained, or the borrower's business or financial condition during the term of the security interest; or taking other actions to adequately police the loan or security interest (such as requiring a borrower to comply with any warranties, covenants, conditions, representations, or promises from the borrower).

(B) Policing activities also include undertaking by the holder of UST environmental compliance actions and voluntary environmental actions taken in compliance with this part, provided that the holder does not otherwise participate in the management or daily operation of the UST or UST system as provided in §280.210(a) and §280.230. Such allowable actions include, but are not limited to, release detection and release reporting, release response and corrective action, temporary or permanent closure of an UST or UST system, UST upgrading or replacement, and maintenance of corrosion protection. A holder who undertakes these actions must do so in compliance with the applicable requirements in this part or applicable state requirements in those states that have been delegated authority by EPA to administer the UST program pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 6991c and 40 CFR part 281. A holder may directly oversee these environmental compliance actions and voluntary environmental actions, and directly hire contractors to perform the work, and is not by such action considered to be participating in the management of the UST or UST system.

(ii) Loan work out. A holder who engages in work out activities prior to foreclosure will remain within the exemption provided that the holder does not together with other actions participate in the management of the UST or UST system as provided in §280.210(a). For purposes of this rule, “work out” refers to those actions by which a holder, at any time prior to foreclosure, seeks to prevent, cure, or mitigate a default by the borrower or obligor; or to preserve, or prevent the diminution of, the value of the security. Work out activities include, but are not limited to, restructuring or renegotiating the terms of the security interest; requiring payment of additional rent or interest; exercising forbearance; requiring or exercising rights pursuant to an assignment of accounts or other amounts owing to an obligor; requiring or exercising rights pursuant to an escrow agreement pertaining to amounts owing to an obligor; providing specific or general financial or other advice, suggestions, counseling, or guidance; and exercising any right or remedy the holder is entitled to by law or under any warranties, covenants, conditions, representations, or promises from the borrower.

(c) Foreclosure on an UST or UST system or facility or property on which an UST or UST system is located, and participation in management activities post-foreclosure.

(1) Foreclosure. (i) Indicia of ownership that are held primarily to protect a security interest include legal or equitable title or deed to real or personal property acquired through or incident to foreclosure. For purposes of this subpart, the term “foreclosure” means that legal, marketable or equitable title or deed has been issued, approved, and recorded, and that the holder has obtained access to the UST, UST system, UST facility, and property on which the UST or UST system is located, provided that the holder acted diligently to acquire marketable title or deed and to gain access to the UST, UST system, UST facility, and property on which the UST or UST system is located. The indicia of ownership held after foreclosure continue to be maintained primarily as protection for a security interest provided that the holder undertakes to sell, re-lease an UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, held pursuant to a lease financing transaction (whether by a new lease financing transaction or substitution of the lessee), or otherwise divest itself of the UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, in a reasonably expeditious manner, using whatever commercially reasonable means are relevant or appropriate with respect to the UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, taking all facts and circumstances into consideration, and provided that the holder does not participate in management (as defined in §280.210(a)) prior to or after foreclosure.

(ii) For purposes of establishing that a holder is seeking to sell, re-lease pursuant to a lease financing transaction (whether by a new lease financing transaction or substitution of the lessee), or divest in a reasonably expeditious manner an UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, the holder may use whatever commercially reasonable means as are relevant or appropriate with respect to the UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, or may employ the means specified in §280.210(c)(2). A holder that outbids, rejects, or fails to act upon a written bona fide, firm offer of fair consideration for the UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, as provided in §280.210(c)(2), is not considered to hold indicia of ownership primarily to protect a security interest.

(2) Holding foreclosed property for disposition and liquidation. A holder, who does not participate in management prior to or after foreclosure, may sell, re-lease, pursuant to a lease financing transaction (whether by a new lease financing transaction or substitution of the lessee), an UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, liquidate, wind up operations, and take measures, prior to sale or other disposition, to preserve, protect, or prepare the secured UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located. A holder may also arrange for an existing or new operator to continue or initiate operation of the UST or UST system. The holder may conduct these activities without voiding the security interest exemption, subject to the requirements of this subpart.

(i) A holder establishes that the ownership indicia maintained after foreclosure continue to be held primarily to protect a security interest by, within 12 months following foreclosure, listing the UST or UST system or the facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, with a broker, dealer, or agent who deals with the type of property in question, or by advertising the UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, as being for sale or disposition on at least a monthly basis in either a real estate publication or a trade or other publication suitable for the UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, or a newspaper of general circulation (defined as one with a circulation over 10,000, or one suitable under any applicable federal, state, or local rules of court for publication required by court order or rules of civil procedure) covering the location of the UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located. For purposes of this provision, the 12-month period begins to run from December 6, 1995 or from the date that the marketable title or deed has been issued, approved and recorded, and the holder has obtained access to the UST, UST system, UST facility and property on which the UST or UST system is located, whichever is later, provided that the holder acted diligently to acquire marketable title or deed and to obtain access to the UST, UST system, UST facility and property on which the UST or UST system is located. If the holder fails to act diligently to acquire marketable title or deed or to gain access to the UST or UST system, the 12-month period begins to run from December 6, 1995 or from the date on which the holder first acquires either title to or possession of the secured UST or UST system, or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, whichever is later.

(ii) A holder that outbids, rejects, or fails to act upon an offer of fair consideration for the UST or UST system or the facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, establishes by such outbidding, rejection, or failure to act, that the ownership indicia in the secured UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located are not held primarily to protect the security interest, unless the holder is required, in order to avoid liability under federal or state law, to make a higher bid, to obtain a higher offer, or to seek or obtain an offer in a different manner.

(A) Fair consideration, in the case of a holder maintaining indicia of ownership primarily to protect a senior security interest in the UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, is the value of the security interest as defined in this section. The value of the security interest includes all debt and costs incurred by the security interest holder, and is calculated as an amount equal to or in excess of the sum of the outstanding principal (or comparable amount in the case of a lease that constitutes a security interest) owed to the holder immediately preceding the acquisition of full title (or possession in the case of a lease financing transaction) pursuant to foreclosure, plus any unpaid interest, rent, or penalties (whether arising before or after foreclosure). The value of the security interest also includes all reasonable and necessary costs, fees, or other charges incurred by the holder incident to work out, foreclosure, retention, preserving, protecting, and preparing, prior to sale, the UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, re-lease, pursuant to a lease financing transaction (whether by a new lease financing transaction or substitution of the lessee), of an UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, or other disposition. The value of the security interest also includes environmental investigation costs (which could include a site assessment, inspection, and/or audit of the UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located), and corrective action costs incurred under §§280.51 through 280.67 or any other costs incurred as a result of reasonable efforts to comply with any other applicable federal, state or local law or regulation; less any amounts received by the holder in connection with any partial disposition of the property and any amounts paid by the borrower (if not already applied to the borrower's obligations) subsequent to the acquisition of full title (or possession in the case of a lease financing transaction) pursuant to foreclosure. In the case of a holder maintaining indicia of ownership primarily to protect a junior security interest, fair consideration is the value of all outstanding higher priority security interests plus the value of the security interest held by the junior holder, each calculated as set forth in this paragraph (c).

(B) Outbids, rejects, or fails to act upon an offer of fair consideration means that the holder outbids, rejects, or fails to act upon within 90 days of receipt, a written, bona fide, firm offer of fair consideration for the UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located received at any time after six months following foreclosure, as defined in §280.210(c). A “written, bona fide, firm offer” means a legally enforceable, commercially reasonable, cash offer solely for the foreclosed UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, including all material terms of the transaction, from a ready, willing, and able purchaser who demonstrates to the holder's satisfaction the ability to perform. For purposes of this provision, the six-month period begins to run from December 6, 1995 or from the date that marketable title or deed has been issued, approved and recorded to the holder, and the holder has obtained access to the UST, UST system, UST facility and property on which the UST or UST system is located, whichever is later, provided that the holder was acting diligently to acquire marketable title or deed and to obtain access to the UST or UST system, UST facility and property on which the UST or UST system is located. If the holder fails to act diligently to acquire marketable title or deed or to gain access to the UST or UST system, the six-month period begins to run from December 6, 1995 or from the date on which the holder first acquires either title to or possession of the secured UST or UST system, or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located, whichever is later.

(3) Actions that are not participation in management post-foreclosure. A holder is not considered to be participating in the management of an UST or UST system or facility or property on which the UST or UST system is located when undertaking actions under this part, provided that the holder does not otherwise participate in the management or daily operation of the UST or UST system as provided in §280.210(a) and §280.230. Such allowable actions include, but are not limited to, release detection and release reporting, release response and corrective action, temporary or permanent closure of an UST or UST system, UST upgrading or replacement, and maintenance of corrosion protection. A holder who undertakes these actions must do so in compliance with the applicable requirements in this part or applicable state requirements in those states that have been delegated authority by EPA to administer the UST program pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 6991c and 40 CFR part 281. A holder may directly oversee these environmental compliance actions and voluntary environmental actions, and directly hire contractors to perform the work, and is not by such action considered to be participating in the management of the UST or UST system.

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