Newark

MURPHY PARTNERS ADDS PROPERTY TAX APPEAL AND LITIGATION GROUPS WITH ADDITION OF NEW PARTNER

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NEWARK, NJ, January 14, 2019 — Murphy Partners LLP is pleased to announce that Thomas S. Dolan will be joining the firm as a partner and will lead the firm’s Property Tax Appeal and Litigation practice groups.

Tom has a wealth of experience advising taxpayers and governmental entities on complex real property tax issues and has litigated the value of virtually all property types, including office buildings, retail stores, shopping centers, apartment buildings, industrial facilities, hotels, and unique special purpose properties. He also has extensive experience litigating complex commercial matters in state and federal courts, including class actions, franchise litigation, state tax controversies, commercial contracts, and real estate disputes.

Additionally, Tom has considerable expertise advising non-profit organizations on obtaining and litigating real estate tax exemptions, including arguing before the Supreme Court of New Jersey, where he successfully represented a group of national and local mental health organizations in preserving property tax exemptions for housing for residents with developmental disabilities.

As a valued advisor on Long Term Tax Exemptions and Payment In Lieu of Tax (PILOT) agreements, Tom will represent both redevelopers and municipalities through all aspects of the PILOT approval process, from obtaining the proper redevelopment area designation to negotiating and finalizing the terms of the tax agreement.

Prior to joining the firm, Tom was a commercial litigator at the prominent national law firm Lowenstein Sandler LLP, where he litigated a wide array of complex commercial matters in state and federal courts across the country. Tom later worked at Skoloff & Wolfe, PC, where he represented taxpayers and municipalities in property tax litigation and advice.

Tom received his law degree from Rutgers School of Law, and his undergraduate degree, summa cum laude, from Rutgers University.

“We are incredibly excited to have Tom join our growing team. He is a seasoned attorney, with significant experience handling complex real property tax and commercial litigation matters and will prove to be a valuable asset to our existing and future clients. His experience will be instrumental in our continued commitment to providing clients with effective legal solutions,” says Kellen F. Murphy, the firm’s managing partner.  

“I am privileged to be joining the talented group of attorneys at Murphy Partners. In a short time, they have distinguished themselves as leaders in the areas of real estate and redevelopment. I am looking forward to contributing to the firm’s continued excellence and its growth in the areas of commercial litigation and real property taxation,” says Thomas S. Dolan.

Murphy Partners LLP is a boutique law firm specializing in real estate, development, and economic incentive advisory. With offices in Newark, New Jersey and New York City, the firm was founded to provide effective, efficient, and creative legal services to meet the distinctive needs of our clients. Through the development of comprehensive legal strategies, our team works tirelessly to create a blueprint for success and advance our clients’ interests in every matter.

Leadership Newark Admits Roosevelt J. Donat to its Public Policy Fellowship Program, Class of 2020

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Murphy Partners LLP is proud to announce that Roosevelt J. Donat has been admitted to the Leadership Newark Public Policy Fellowship Program, class of 2020.  

Established in 1998, Leadership Newark, Inc. was born out of a desire to strengthen the City of Newark’s civic infrastructure through public policy enrichment and leadership training & development.  Why the focus on public policy issues – because government policy affects the entire community. Why the focus on leadership training & development – to enable those armed with a deeper understanding of community issues to develop the skills necessary to make change and have lasting impact. As a result, the founders determined it would be wise to tap Newark & New Jersey’s greatest asset – it’s people to make a difference. Leadership Newark invests in the intellectual capital of the community to improve the state of affairs for the greater good.

Key stakeholders in a variety of sectors, including government, business, corporate, nonprofit,  and education were brought together to assess the type of support such a program would garner. It was determined not only would such a program be supported, but it was needed to help the City of Newark undergo a Renaissance.  As a result the organization designed a leadership development program. Today, Leadership Newark is known for administering a 2-year public policy fellowship program attracting diverse, active and committed professionals to participate in a program that expand their knowledge and pushes one to delve deeper into the public discourse to improve community.

In addition to the flagship public policy fellowship program, Leadership Newark has expanded to offer additional programs reaching youth, teens and adult populations.  The programs include board service training, public policy summits, board match/placement and special initiatives to support local nonprofits. The network is 600+ strong. The personal achievements and collective impact can be felt throughout the City, County, and State.

In 2014, Senator Cory Booker during his tenure as mayor for the City of Newark stated, “My Administration has been a great beneficiary of the tremendous work of Leadership Newark….And, we are partnering with dozens of organizations throughout the City that are being led by Leadership Newark alumnae. The impact of Leadership Newark is being felt throughout our great City.”

In April 2016, Mayor Ras Baraka notes, “Leadership Newark has played a major role in our City’s transformation, by working tirelessly to build the future we want for the City we love. I am proud of the vital role Leadership Newark is playing as a partner in our work. Truly, Leadership Newark is a winner.”

“I have no doubt that Roosevelt’s deep commitment to the City of Newark and the State of New Jersey and his understanding of the intersection of law, business, policy, nonprofit and government will make him a great addition to Leadership Newark. As a firm, we are proud of his continued dedication to serving the Newark community.” says Kellen F. Murphy, managing partner at Murphy Partners LLP.


For more information on Leadership Newark, please visit https://www.leadershipnewark.org/.

Murphy Partners LLP Continues to Expand with Addition of New Partner

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Murphy Partners LLP is pleased to announce that John P. McDonough will be joining the firm as a partner in the firm’s Commercial Real Estate Group.

John is an experienced transactional real estate attorney. As a partner in the firm, John’s practice will focus on all aspects of commercial real estate transactions, including office and retail leasing, acquisitions, dispositions, and real estate finance, including restructuring and workouts. He will also advise clients in connection with business transactions, construction law, and other commercial matters.

Prior to joining the firm, John spent nearly a decade as an attorney at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, where he represented the bi-state agency in a diverse array of real estate, construction, and development matters. He also served as bond counsel for the agency and worked extensively on the development of the World Trade Center and Transit Hub.

Following his time at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, John served as Assistant Corporation Counsel for the City of Jersey City, where he regularly advised the City on commercial real estate and development matters.

“We are incredibly excited to have John join our growing team. He is a seasoned attorney, with experience handling complex commercial real estate transactions in both New Jersey and New York. His experience will be instrumental in our continued commitment to providing clients with effective legal solutions,” says Kellen F. Murphy, the firm’s managing partner.

“I’m thrilled to be joining the dynamic team at Murphy Partners and look forward to contributing to the firm’s future growth and success as a leader in the New Jersey and New York real estate legal market,” says John P. McDonough.

Murphy Partners LLP is a boutique law firm specializing in real estate, development, and economic incentive advisory. With offices in Newark, New Jersey and New York City, the firm was founded to provide effective, efficient, and creative legal services to meet the distinctive needs of our clients. Through the development of comprehensive legal strategies, our team works tirelessly to create a blueprint for success and advance our clients’ interests in every matter.

Incentive Alert: Rutgers University Report Recommends Changes to New Jersey’s Business Incentive Programs

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On Wednesday, the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) submitted a report to Governor Phil Murphy, conducted by Rutgers University’s Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, which (among other things) recommended changes to the State’s business incentive programs, including the Grow New Jersey Assistance Program (Grow NJ) and the Economic Redevelopment and Growth Grant Program (ERG).

The report (which can be found here) found the following:   

  • There has been a significant volume of project approvals under Grow NJ, which are associated with significant volumes of retained and created jobs, but which will also generate a substantial offset to the Corporate Business Tax and Insurance Premium Tax in the years ahead;

  • Commercial ERG projects leverage a considerable amount of private investment.

  • Given the long lead time associated with Grow NJ and ERG projects, it is too soon to fully evaluate the impact of these programs on the State’s economy;

  • Projects approved under Grow NJ are generally concentrated in the northern, more populous counties of the State. A significant percentage of project funding in the eight southern counties has been concentrated in Camden;

  • Redundancies in the Grow NJ base and bonus award structure are potentially providing more generous incentives than intended by the statute;

  • Because certain bonuses have been underutilized, it is not clear that the program has advanced certain policy goals intended by the legislation such as clean energy investment and the creation of incubators;

  • There is an opportunity to improve EDA’s analysis of proposed incentive projects.

The report suggested the following to improve the programs:

  • A deeper analysis of the types and quality of jobs created or retained, and whether some or all of the related economic activity would have happened with lower or no incentives.

  • A review of the overall impact of the reduction in Corporate Business Tax revenues (which would be made up for by higher Gross Income Tax from created or retained jobs), given the constitutional requirement that the Gross Income Tax fund property tax relief while the Corporate Business Tax and Insurance Premium Tax are the primary resources for the General Fund.

  • Given the Grow NJ program’s goals of job creation and retention, the report recommends that the alternative approach used in calculating certain awards in the city of Camden (the “Camden alternatives”) be revised to tie awards more closely to the employment created by these firms.

  • NJEDA should consider eliminating or revising the bonus for Transit Oriented Development in Urban Transit Hubs and Garden State Growth Zones. This bonus may be redundant in most cases in these jurisdictions, where it accounts for about 21 percent, or about $250 million of the total award value for projects qualifying for the bonus.

The programs are currently set to expire in July 2019. With the sunset of the programs only a year away, legislators will soon start to discuss potential changes to the programs. While change may be on the horizon, one thing is clear--incentives will continue to be part of New Jersey’s economic development toolkit.

If interested in learning more about state and local incentives, please do not hesitate to contact Murphy Partners LLP at (973) 877-6984 or info@murphyllp.com.  

MURPHY PARTNERS LLP

Murphy Partners LLP is a boutique law firm specializing in real estate, development, and economic incentive advisory. With offices in Newark, New Jersey and New York City, the firm was founded to provide effective, efficient, and creative legal services to meet the distinctive needs of our clients. Through the development of comprehensive legal strategies, our team works tirelessly to create a blueprint for success and advance our clients’ interests in every matter.

Incentive Alert: New Jersey Legislature Advances PILOT Bill

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On Monday, the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee unanimously voted to advance legislation (S-1701) that would add additional requirements for the approval of PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes) agreements between municipalities and developers.

Among other things, the bill would require developers seeking a PILOT to include a cost-benefit analysis as part of their application. In addition, municipal officials would be required to submit an independent analysis of the proposed redevelopment project, including the impact on local revenue collections, the local school district and county government.

The New Jersey League of Municipalities opposes the bill, and argues that it will increase costs and limit local decision-making authority.

NAIOP New Jersey issued a statement highlighting its concern with an amendment to the bill that would require the annual service charge to be distributed in proportion to the amount of revenue received by the county, municipality, and school district from the property tax. The organization argues that the amendment will greatly limit the usefulness of PILOT agreements.

While an identical bill has been introduced in the Assembly and referred to the State and Local Government Committee, it has yet to receive a vote.  

If interested in learning more about state and local development incentives, please do not hesitate to contact Murphy Partners LLP at (973) 877-6984 or info@murphyllp.com.  

MURPHY PARTNERS LLP

Murphy Partners LLP is a boutique law firm specializing in real estate, development, and economic incentive advisory. With offices in Newark, New Jersey and New York City, the firm was founded to provide effective, efficient, and creative legal services to meet the distinctive needs of our clients. Through the development of comprehensive legal strategies, our team works tirelessly to create a blueprint for success and advance our clients’ interests in every matter.

New Jersey Incentive Update - June 2018

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On Tuesday, June 12, 2018, the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) will hold its monthly board meeting. Among the actions to be taken, the Board will consider two applications under the Grow New Jersey Assistance Program (Grow NJ). If approved, the two applicants could receive over $60,000,000 in tax credits (over 10 years).

Created under the Economic Opportunity Act of 2013, the Grow New Jersey Assistance Program (Grow NJ) is the State’s main job creation and retention incentive program. Under the Grow NJ program, businesses creating or retaining jobs in the State may be eligible for tax credits ranging from $500 to $5,000 per job, per year; with bonus credits ranging from $250 to $3,000 per job, per year (awards vary based on applicable criteria).

The Grow NJ program has been wildly popular and incredibly successful. Since its implementation, 252 projects have received awards, totaling over $4.7 billion in tax credits. Approved applicants generally have three years to certify, or complete, a project. A project is deemed complete when the applicant has hired or retained the number of employees listed in its application, and satisfied the program’s capital investment requirements. Once certified, the 252 projects will drive over $4.5 billion in private capital investment, create over 30,000 new jobs, and retain over 36,000 jobs at risk of leaving the State.

If interested in learning more about Grow NJ or other economic development incentive programs, please do not hesitate to contact Murphy Partners LLP at (973) 877-6984 or info@murphyllp.com. 

MURPHY PARTNERS LLP

Murphy Partners LLP is a boutique law firm specializing in real estate, development, and economic incentive advisory. With offices in Newark, New Jersey and New York City, the firm was founded to provide effective, efficient, and creative legal services to meet the distinctive needs of our clients. Through the development of comprehensive legal strategies, our team works tirelessly to create a blueprint for success and advance our clients’ interests in every matter.

New Jersey Incentive Update - April 2018

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On Tuesday, April 10, 2018, the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) will hold its monthly board meeting in Trenton. Among the actions to be taken, the Board will consider seven applications under the Grow New Jersey Assistance Program (Grow NJ). If approved, the seven applicants could receive over $51,000,000 in tax credits (over 10 years).

Created under the Economic Opportunity Act of 2013, the Grow New Jersey Assistance Program (Grow NJ) is the State’s main job creation and retention incentive program. Under the Grow NJ program, businesses creating or retaining jobs in the State may be eligible for tax credits ranging from $500 to $5,000 per job, per year; with bonus credits ranging from $250 to $3,000 per job, per year (awards vary based on applicable criteria).

The Grow NJ program has been wildly popular and incredibly successful. Since its implementation, 247 projects have received awards, totaling over $4.7 billion in tax credits. Approved applicants generally have three years to certify, or complete, a project. A project is deemed complete when the applicant has hired or retained the number of employees listed in its application, and satisfied the program’s capital investment requirements. Once certified, the 247 projects will drive over $4.5 billion in private capital investment, create over 30,000 new jobs, and retain over 35,000 jobs at risk of leaving the State.

If interested in learning more about Grow NJ or other economic development incentive programs, please do not hesitate to contact Murphy Partners LLP at (973) 877-6984 or info@murphyllp.com. 

MURPHY PARTNERS LLP

Murphy Partners LLP is a boutique law firm specializing in real estate, development, and economic incentive advisory. Headquartered in Newark, New Jersey, the firm was founded to provide effective, efficient, and creative legal services to meet the distinctive needs of our clients. Through the development of comprehensive legal strategies, our team works tirelessly to create a blueprint for success and advance our clients’ interests in every matter.

Greater Newark Enterprises Corporation (GNEC) Elects Chris J. Murphy to Board of Directors

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Murphy Partners LLP is proud to announce that Chris J. Murphy has been named to the board of directors of the Greater Newark Enterprises Corporation (GNEC).

GNEC is a non-profit organization and Community Development Financing Institution (CDFI) committed to business growth and job creation. GNEC accomplishes this mission by connecting entrepreneurs to business and capital resources.

“I have no doubt that Chris’ deep understanding of the intersection of law, business, and government will be a value asset to GNEC. As a firm, we are proud of his continued dedication to serving our community,” says Kellen F. Murphy, managing partner at Murphy Partners LLP.

For more information on GNEC, please visit www.gnecorp.org.

Incentive Alert: Federal Tax Law Creates Incentives for Investment in “Opportunity Zones”

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While corporate and individual tax relief took center stage in the debate over the passage of the new federal tax reform legislation, a less-discussed section of the new law may have a significant impact in driving investment into distressed areas throughout the country.

The new law establishes the Opportunity Zone Program, which creates preferential tax treatment for unrealized capital gains that are reinvested in to-be-determine qualified opportunity zones. The new law instructs governors in each state (and the Mayor of Washington, D.C.) to identify eligible census tracts from a pool of low-income, high-poverty census tracts (each state is limited to selecting up to 25% of the state’s census tracts that meet the eligibility requirements).

Importantly, the new law will allow corporations and partnerships to establish Opportunity Funds, created for the purpose of investing in qualified opportunity zone property (which includes any opportunity zone business stock, any opportunity zone partnership interest, and any opportunity zone business property).

As recently outlined by the Economic Innovation Group (www.eig.org), investments made in a qualified Opportunity Fund will receive preferential tax treatment, including:

  1. A temporary deferral of inclusion in taxable income for capital gains reinvested in an Opportunity Fund. The deferred gain must be recognized on the earlier of the date on which the opportunity zone investment is disposed of or December 31, 2026.

  2. A step-up in basis for capital gains reinvested in an Opportunity Fund. The basis is increased by 10% if the investment in the Opportunity Fund is held by the taxpayer for at least 5 years and by an additional 5% if held for at least 7 years, thereby excluding up to 15% of the original gain from taxation.

  3. A permanent exclusion from taxable income of capital gains from the sale or exchange of an investment in an Opportunity Fund if the investment is held for at least 10 years. This exclusion only applies to gains accrued after an investment in an Opportunity Fund.

To take advantage of the special tax treatment created under this program, taxpayers must roll over non-opportunity zone gains before Dec. 31, 2026.

If interested in learning more about this or other economic development incentive programs, please do not hesitate to contact Murphy Partners LLP at (973) 877-6984 or info@murphyllp.com.

MURPHY PARTNERS LLP

Murphy Partners LLP is a boutique law firm specializing in real estate and economic incentive advisory. Headquartered in Newark, New Jersey, the firm was founded to provide effective, efficient, and creative legal services to meet the distinctive needs of our clients. Through the development of comprehensive legal strategies, our team works tirelessly to create a blueprint for success and advance our clients’ interests in every matter.

Murphy Partners LLP Adds Two Attorneys to Real Estate Practice Group

Murphy Partners LLP is pleased to announce the addition of Pamela Hoff and Ryan S. Curran to the firm’s growing Real Estate Practice Group.

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Pamela Hoff, counsel, is a seasoned real estate attorney with over 30 years of experience. Her practice focuses on representing buyers and sellers of commercial and residential real estate. She regularly assists individuals, real estate investors, and commercial entities through the contracting, due diligence, financing, and closing stages of real estate transactions. Prior to joining Murphy Partners LLP, Pamela was a supervising attorney at a large regional law firm, where she was responsible for all commercial and residential real estate closings in both New Jersey and New York.

“Pam is an integral part of our growing team. Her ability to work through complex issues in an effective and time-sensitive manner will be a benefit to our current and future clients,” says Kellen F. Murphy, the firm’s managing partner.

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Ryan S. Curran, counsel, has extensive experience in the fields of real estate finance, tax credits, and business advisory. He regularly advises and assists clients from a wide range of industries on numerous aspects of their businesses, with a particular focus on clients in the real estate, hospitality, construction, and professional services industries. In addition to being a practicing attorney, Ryan is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in New York and New Jersey.

“Ryan has been a friend and a strategic partner of the firm since our launch. We look forward to Ryan playing an active role in helping to grow the firm in the coming years,” says Chris J. Murphy, a partner in the firm.

If interested in learning more about Murphy Partners LLP, please don’t hesitate to contact us at (973) 877-6984 or info@murphyllp.com.

MURPHY PARTNERS LLP

Murphy Partners LLP is a boutique law firm specializing in real estate and economic incentive advisory. Headquartered in Newark, New Jersey, the firm was founded to provide effective, efficient, and creative legal services to meet the distinctive needs of our clients. Through the development of comprehensive legal strategies, our team works tirelessly to create a blueprint for success and advance our clients’ interests in every matter.