This course is a broad study of the evolving field of community economic development law. It will address the legal, business and policy considerations that underlie efforts to enhance the economic viability of low-income urban and rural communities through the development of affordable housing and commercial real estate, as well as the stimulation of entrepreneurship. Because nonprofit organizations play an important role, both as catalyst and developer, with respect to community economic development, a particular focus of this course will be the legal issues related to the involvement of tax-exempt organizations in this work. In addition to exposing students to the substantive law involved in traditional community economic development transactions (particularly, community development finance), the course will be structured to provide the opportunity to develop practical skills in statutory and regulatory analysis and drafting. Students will also have the opportunity to "lawyer" simulated transactions through the use of case studies. Because this field is in transition, the course will conclude with an exploration of the question: "What comes next?" Students will lead this element of the course through a series of in-class presentations on alternative and new models of community economic development. The course grade will be based on class participation, the case studies and the presentations.
There are no prerequisites for this course, but students have often found that it is helpful to have taken Business Associations, Federal Income Tax, and Exempt Organizations before enrolling in CED Law.