NJDEP Administrative Order Preserves Sewer Service Areas Until April 7, 2011, and Addresses the Sewer Service Area Revision Process

May 3rd, 2010 | Posted by: Christopher DeGrezia 0| comments:

2009-02-17 Transfer 426By 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.

Background

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 «

Time’s Up for Time of Decision Rule

March 18th, 2010 | Posted by: Christopher DeGrezia 3| comments:

Time of Decision RuleThe New Jersey Senate and Assembly recently passed a bill (S-58: A-437) that overrides the “time of decision rule,” which has governed decision making under the Municipal Land Use Law for decades. 

Under current law, a planning board or zoning board of adjustment applies the law in effect at the time it renders its decision, rather than the law in effect when the issues were initially presented.  A municipal governing body can amend its zoning ordinance after an application for development has been filed with a land use board, even in direct response to the application, and the land use board decides the matter based upon the amended ordinance. 

Under the new bill, a land use board would be required to make its decision on an application for development in accordance with the development regulations (zoning ordinance, subdivision ordinance, site plan ordinance, official map ordinance or other municipal regulation of the use and development of land) that are in effect on the date the application for development is submitted.  The bill also exempts an application for development from changes made to ordinances other than development regulations, except for those relating to health and public safety, that are adopted after the application for development is submitted. » Read the rest of this entry «

“Inherently Beneficial Use” is defined to include Wind, Solar or Photovoltaic Energy Facilities

March 12th, 2010 | Posted by: Christopher DeGrezia 1| comments:

Renewable EnergyIn June, I reported that the New Jersey Legislature proposed a bill (S1202/A3062) that would add the definition of an “inherently beneficial use” to the Municipal Land Use Law and expand the inherently beneficial use status to include wind, solar and photovoltaic facilities.   The legislation has been adopted and the following definitions now apply:

“Inherently beneficial use” means a use which is universally considered of value to the community because it fundamentally serves the public good and promotes the general welfare. Such a use includes, but is not limited to, a hospital, school, child care center, group home, or a wind, solar or photovoltaic energy facility or structure.

“Wind, solar or photovoltaic energy facility or structure” means a facility or structure for the purpose of supplying electrical energy produced from wind, solar, or photovoltaic technologies, whether such facility or structure is a principal use, a part of the principal use, or an accessory use or structure.

For a copy of the Pamphlet Law click here.

For a discussion of the inherently beneficial use variance standard click here.

Construction Codes: New Jersey Get’s it Right!

March 2nd, 2010 | Posted by: Christopher DeGrezia 5| comments:

Painting by Robert Sussna

Immagini de Venezia

By Robert Sussna, AIA Emeritus

Few would argue against the statement that New Jersey is one of the most densely developed states, or that New Jersey is over-regulated, especially in the area of construction regulations, but how many would agree that New Jersey has one of the best construction codes in the Country ?

Am I serious ? Absolutely!

In the area of changes to the architecture of existing buildings, New Jersey has the most-progressive law in the land! » Read the rest of this entry «

Governor’s Transition Team Reports Released

January 25th, 2010 | Posted by: Christopher DeGrezia 0| comments:

2009-02-17 Transfer 167With 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:

New Legislation Gives Additional Protection To Approvals Covered by the Permit Extension Act of 2008

January 21st, 2010 | Posted by: Christopher DeGrezia 0| comments:

2009-02-17 Transfer 102By Michael Smith, Esq., LEED AP.

On January 18, 2010, now former Governor Jon Corzine signed A-4347 – legislation that lengthens the protection of the Permit Extension Act of 2008, for an additional 2.5 years. 
 By way of background, the Permit Extension Act automatically suspended the expiration of many, but not all, state, county and local permits and approvals, for an “extension period” intially lasting from January 1, 2007 through July 1, 2010. 

With A-4347 signed into law, that “extension period” will now last until December 31, 2012, after which the running of the approval periods will resume for up to 6 months – that is, until June 30, 2013.  Furthermore, bear in mind that approvals covered by the Permit Extension Act remain eligible for additional extensions under other authorities (for example, the Municipal Land Use Law)

For a copy of A-4347 please click here.

New Jersey Tax Court Exempts Intercompany Transfer From Realty Transfer Fee

January 14th, 2010 | Posted by: Christopher DeGrezia 2| comments:

2009-02-17 Transfer 005By Kenneth Norcross, Esq. 

The New Jersey Tax Court has held that transfers of unencumbered property between commonly owned legal entities, for nominal consideration, are not subject to the realty transfer fee. The court rejected the position taken by the Division of Taxation in its current regulations that such transfers are always subject to the fee and that the consideration should be measured by the assessed value of the property.

In Mack-Cali Realty, LP v. Taxation Div. Director, the taxpayer conveyed its unencumbered properties to its wholly owned limited liability companies in each case for consideration of $10. The taxpayer claimed that the transfers were not subject to the realty transfer fee because the statute specifically exempts transfers for consideration of less than $100. » Read the rest of this entry «

NJ Legislature Proposes to Lengthen the Protection of the Permit Extension Act of 2008

December 18th, 2009 | Posted by: Christopher DeGrezia 0| comments:

dsc_0092aaBy Michael Smith, Esq., LEED AP.

The New Jersey Legislature recently introduced identical companion bills S-3137 and A-4347 – proposed legislation standing to lengthen the protection of the Permit Extension Act of 2008 (the “PEA”), until at least December 31, 2012.  By way of background, the PEA automatically suspended the expiration of many state, county and local approvals and permits, for an “extension period” lasting from January 1, 2007 through July 1, 2010, after which the running of the approval periods will resume for up to six months – that is, until December 31, 2010. » Read the rest of this entry «

Understanding Property Tax Appeals

December 7th, 2009 | Posted by: Christopher DeGrezia 0| comments:

tax appealBy Nicole Bayman, Esq.  

New Jersey homeowners and businesses appealed their property tax assessments in record numbers for the 2009 tax year, a trend that will likely continue in 2010.  The recent real estate market downturn has had many property owners questioning the accuracy of the assessed value of their properties.  Municipalities that undertook a revaluation of property at the height of the real estate boom are facing an increasing amount of appeals by owners who claim that their assessments are too high.  » Read the rest of this entry «

NJDEP Amends Freshwater Wetlands Mitigation Requirements: New Rules Could Require the Replacement of Wetland Areas as Small as a New Drainage Outfall Pipe

November 18th, 2009 | Posted by: Christopher DeGrezia 2| comments:

Wetlands BankBy 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 «

Site Remediation Reform Act: How Will the Act Impact the Use of Alternate Remediation Standards (ARS)?

November 11th, 2009 | Posted by: Christopher DeGrezia 1| comments:

DSC_0371Although 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 «

Site Remediation Reform Act: Will the New Permit Program for Operation, Maintenance and Inspection of Engineering and Institutional Controls be Different from NJDEP’s Current Biennial Certification Program?

October 30th, 2009 | Posted by: Christopher DeGrezia 0| comments:

Site Remediation Reform Act - Biennial CertificationCurrently, 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 «