July 18th, 2012 | Posted by:
On July 17, 2012, Department of Environmental Proptection Comissioner Bob Martin anounced that 21 Counties have updated their sewer maps in order to priovide clear direction on where sewer service and potential development is approprate, while protecting nearly 210,000 acres of environmentally sensitve lands. The NJDEP Alert issued on July 17 summaries the current status:
Counties and municipalities across the state worked with the DEP since January to meet a July 15 deadline set by the Legislature to submit to the DEP either a sewer service area map or full wastewater management plans. These plans had been stalled for several years due to unworkable rules set up by a previous administration that left vulnerable lands unprotected and put counties in a no-win bureaucratic bind. » Read the rest of this entry «
February 27th, 2012 | Posted by:
By Andy Norin, Esq. and Scott Hovanyetz, Esq.
On January 17, 2012, Governor Christie signed into law Senate Bill No. 3156 (S3156), which extends the effective period of existing sewer service areas. This should provide some relief to developers concerned about the possible withdrawal of sewer service areas in places where wastewater management planning agencies have failed to comply with the deadline to submit wastewater management plans (WMPs) to the State Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). The bill also allows for site specific amendments and revisions to WMPs and Water Quality Management Plans pending DEP approval of new WMPs.
Wastewater Management Plans govern where new sanitary sewer lines can be built. For a sewer line to be extended to a particular property, the property must be included within the sewer service area in the WMP. Properties that fall outside the sewer service area can only be served by septic systems. » Read the rest of this entry «
November 8th, 2011 | Posted by:
By Michael A. Smith
On June 29, 2011, the Appellate Division of the New Jersey Superior Court released its opinion In the Matter of the Adoption of N.J.A.C. 7:15-5.24(b) and N.J.A.C. 7:15-5.25(e), upholding certain key provisions of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s Water Quality Management Planning Rules (WQMP Rules), N.J.A.C. 7:15 et seq. (namely, a provision that prohibits the extension of sanitary sewer lines in environmentally sensitive areas, and a provision that sets a maximum nitrate level for septic system discharge). In so holding, the court rejected a developer’s argument that the WQMP Rules constitute unauthorized land use regulation, in excess of NJDEP’s authority.
Among other things, this ruling provides “teeth” to NJDEP’s pending sewer service area revision process, i.e., NJDEP’s efforts to prohibit the building of new sanitary sewer lines based on the presence of environmentally sensitive features (including threatened and endangered species habitat, Natural Heritage Priority Sites, Category One riparian zones and wetlands). » Read the rest of this entry «
June 24th, 2010 | Posted by:
By Ellen Radow Sadat, Esq.
At a well-attended New Jersey Chamber of Commerce Breakfast in late May, Deputy Commissioner Irene Kropp described the evolving organizational responsibilities of three key managers at the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), Chief of Staff Magdalena Padilla, Chief Counselor Ray Cantor and Irene Kropp. These responsibilities are evolving as Commissioner Bob Martin develops the Department’s Vision Statement, which should be posted on the NJDEP website soon. Shortly thereafter, the Department will publish its “Transformation Agenda,” which will be designed to implement the Vision Statement and presumably change the way NJDEP does business.
In the meantime, the Department is actively acknowledging that it should be a responsive and transparent agency. There are three key managers who will try to accomplish this goal while attending to the following responsibilities. » Read the rest of this entry «
May 3rd, 2010 | Posted by:
By Glenn S. Pantel and Michael A. Smith
On March 24, 2010, the Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection issued Administrative Order No. 2010-03 – a measure that extends the deadline for wastewater management planning entities to submit revised wastewater management plans (WMPs), until April 7, 2011. This administrative order also provides property owners with new rights in connection with NJDEP’s wastewater management planning process.
WMPs are legally binding documents that govern where new sanitary sewer lines can be built. For a sewer line to be extended into a property, it must be included within the sewer service area (SSA) in the area wide WMP. Properties that fall outside the SSA are generally required to be served by septic systems. » Read the rest of this entry «
January 25th, 2010 | Posted by:
With a new Governor taking the reigns, many people are wondering in what direction New Jersey will be heading. The Transition Subcommittee’s reports, including findings and recommendations, provide valuable insight. Click on the links below to see the recently released reports:
November 18th, 2009 | Posted by:
By John C. Ryder, P.E., P.P., P.W.S., C.M.E. Effective November 2, 2009, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) has amended the Freshwater Wetlands Protection Act Rules to expanded the list of Freshwater Wetlands Statewide General Permits (SGP) requiring mitigation as follows: SGP No. 2 (Underground utility lines); SGP No. 6 (Isolated wetlands); SGP Nos. 10A & 10B (Road crossings); SGP No. 11 (Outfalls & intake structures); SGP No. 21 (Above ground utility lines); and SGP 27 (Redevelopment of previously disturbed areas). Wetlands permits previously requiring mitigation included: SGP No. 4 (Hazardous site investigation and cleanup); SGP No. 5 (Landfill closures); and all Individual Permits (IP). » Read the rest of this entry «
November 11th, 2009 | Posted by:
Although the Site Remediation Reform Act (SRRA) gives Licensed Site Remediation Professionals (LSRPs) substantial authority once the exclusive purview of NJDEP, not all of the functions held by NJDEP case managers under the pre-SRRA process for remediation will be transferred to the LSRP. Such is the case with Alternate Remediation Standards (ARS). An ARS is a remediation standard developed for use at a given site based on site-specific conditions and risks that is often less restrictive than adopted standards. One of the laws modified by SRRA continues to allow the use of ARS in lieu of the established minimum soil remediation standards for residential or non-residential use. » Read the rest of this entry «
October 30th, 2009 | Posted by:
Currently, NJDEP requires a biennial certification for engineering and institutional controls. Every two years, a certification must be prepared, signed and submitted to NJDEP reporting on the monitoring, inspection and maintenance for caps, covers, fences, signs, Classification Exception Areas (CEAs), deed notices and other engineering and institutional controls implemented as part of the remediation of a contaminated site. Under the Site Remediation Reform Act (SRRA), NJDEP will now be implementing a new permit program for this purpose. NJDEP is wrestling with the best way to move forward with the transition of these requirements into a permit program. » Read the rest of this entry «
October 30th, 2009 | Posted by:
The Department of Environmental Protection is proposing amendments to the Coastal Permit Program rules, N.J.A.C. 7:7, which contain the coastal general permits and the permits-by-rule. Under this proposal, the Department is proposing a new permit-by-rule and two new coastal general permits for the construction of wind turbines on land; a new permit-by-rule for the construction of solar panels; and is describing the situations in which construction of a wind turbine or solar panel does not require a coastal permit. The Department is also proposing amendments to the Coastal Zone Management rules, N.J.A.C. 7:7E, to facilitate the construction of wind turbines in the coastal zone in appropriate locations. » Read the rest of this entry «
October 22nd, 2009 | Posted by:
By Ellen Radow Sadat, Esq. & Joseph Schmidt, Esq.
The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (”DEP”) is taking another weapon out of its abundant arsenal, which may make it harder to implement reasonable remedial actions and delay cleanups. Under draft guidance, titled “Requirements for Remedial Actions Rendering Properties Unusable,” issued on October 5, 2009, DEP plans to implement a seemingly innocuous provision of the Site Remediation Reform Act (“SRRA”): » Read the rest of this entry «
October 20th, 2009 | Posted by:
There are two significant provisions in the Site Remediation Reform Act (SRRA) that will impact how NJDEP pursues its claims for Natural Resource Damages (NRD). The first is a fairly obvious change to existing law (the Statute of Limitations) setting deadlines for the state to bring a claim for NRD. The second, and more significant provision, stems from a subtle reference nestled amid NJDEP’s newly defined powers of direct remedial oversight. » Read the rest of this entry «