These U.S. EPA and DOJ EES engagements have covered the range from small towns to major metropolitan areas. The sought environmental expenditures have ranged from civil penalty payments in the thousands of dollars, to Superfund cleanup cost contributions in the millions of dollars, to wastewater collection system upgrades to fix Combined Sewer Overflows approaching a billion dollars. Based on his extensive experience with these ability-to-pay assessment, Mr. Shefftz developed U.S. EPA's "MUNIPAY" computer model, which allows financial laypersons to perform municipal financial analyses for these types of cases. For additional information please see the Computer Models page.
Mr. Shefftz also has extensive experience from EPA and DOJ EES consulting engagements in analyzing the financial gain that has accrued to municipalities from regulatory noncompliance. By failing to incur compliance costs in a timely manner, a municipality’s taxpayers and/or ratepayers may become financially better off because of the delayed and/or avoided compliance costs.
In addition to these types of engagements, Mr. Shefftz has applied his expertise in municipal finance to other contexts. For example, a fixed base operator (“FBO”) was denied permission to sell jet fuel by a municipal airport commission. In the U.S. District Court case deposition, Mr. Shefftz testified not only to the FBO’s damages (from foregone jet fuel sales), but also assessed the extent to which the commission had effectively diverted monies from the airport to the town’s General Fund via a joint cost allocation methodology and interest allocation methodology. (The airport was not allowed to support general municipal purposes as a condition of its receipt of Federal Aviation Administration funds.)
In another case, Mr. Shefftz assessed the adequacy of proposed financing plans and enabling legislation to close a landfill and construct a replacement, testifying in U.S. District Court on his findings. Additional information on this case is available at the In the News page.
In a case for a major corporation in the energy section, Mr. Shefftz provided deposition testimony on how a crippling fiscal crisis would have precluded a large municipality from obtaining financing for an after-the-fact proposed water system capital improvement project.
In the public policy context, for EPA’s Office of Water in its review of the Safe Drinking Water Act’s affordability criteria for new drinking water standard rules, he assessed the criteria’s implications for small water systems’ finances, proposed alternative criteria, created databases to predict how many systems would be judged unable to afford drinking water rules, and evaluated public comments.
Mr. Shefftz has also been retained on cases by law firms representing municipalities, although to date these cases have not involved any municipal financial analysis.
Finally, Mr. Shefftz has served as the Chair of the Planning Board in the Town of Amherst, Massachusetts, and as such was legally classified as a Special Municipal Employee.