In response to a national recession, the New Jersey Assembly and Senate passed the Permit Extension Act of 2008 (“Act”), which was signed into law on or about September 6, 2008 by Governor Corzine . The Act suspends the expiration of most state, county and local approvals and permits in existence during the “extension period” running from January 1, 2007 through July 1, 2010. However, the Act specifically excludes permits involving the federal government, municipal approvals for residential developments where the land subsequently has been rezoned for either industrial or commercial use, permits for development in environmentally sensitive areas and some permits issued by the Department of Transportation and the Department of Environmental Protection. The act also excludes from coverage permits and approvals that are in “environmentally sensitive areas” which include certain Planning Ares (4B and 5).
The Act has many nuances in application and should be read carefully. In an effort to minimize the confusion the Department of Environmental Protection has established a web page that provides some basic resources and information regarding the implementation of the Act. If the website does not address the particular circumstances of a permit holder or applicant, questions may be submitted to the Office of Permit Coordination at http://www.nj.gov/dep/opppc/permitcoor.htm. (A form to submit questions is available on the website.)