Photo of Ted Zangari

Ted Zangari is a Member of Sills Cummis & Gross and is a Chair of the Firm's Real Estate Department.  Mr. Zangari also chairs the Firm's Government Relations and Public Policy Practice and its Redevelopment Law Practice.

With just two days remaining in the two-year legislative session in Trenton, New Jersey lawmakers and the Governor’s Office are reportedly drafting compromise legislation for speedy passage tomorrow and Monday, which Governor Murphy is expected to sign into law in a matter of days. While the contents of the draft bill fall far short of the Murphy Administration’s proposed sweeping overhaul of the state’s alcoholic beverage laws, the revisions appear to be significant. NJ Advance Media has previewed the legislation and is reporting that it would:Continue Reading NJ Legislature Poised to Revise Restaurant/Brewery Liquor Licensing Laws with Two Days Left in Session

Governor Murphy today conditionally vetoed legislation that would have added yet another burden on commercial property owners.  The bill, A-4750, would have required the owner of every commercial property in the state—presumably affecting retail, office and industrial space despite the bill’s reference to the creation of a “storefront” registry— to notify the state’s Business Action Center (“BAC”) whenever a commercial space “becomes available” and “no person or entity is presently scheduled to lease or purchase the property.”  The property owner would have also been required to notify the BAC again when such space became re-occupied. Instead of an outright rejection of the bill, however, Governor Murphy suggested that the Legislature first allow for the BAC to study the issue that the legislation aimed to solve. In conditionally vetoing the legislation, Governor Murphy echoed the sentiments of my colleagues in this earlier blog post.Continue Reading Gov. Murphy Rejects Legislation Requiring Commercial Property Owners to Register “Vacant Space”

Since its launch more than two years ago, the New Jersey Aspire tax credit incentive program (“NJ Aspire”) has not been the deal-closing fund that redevelopers have so desperately needed. Thus far, NJ Aspire, like the “ERG” program which preceded it, has been unable to close, or even substantially narrow, projected financing gaps on most potential redevelopment projects across the state’s urban centers.Continue Reading Summary of the Revised “NJ Aspire” Redevelopment Incentive Program

Op-ed as seen on: ROI-NJ.com
By: George Jacobs and Ted Zangari

High on the list of antiquated regulations that are stifling competitiveness in New Jersey are those governing restaurant liquor licensing. So, kudos to Gov. Phil Murphy for being the first governor in modern state history to openly call for the overhaul of a system that for decades has prevented many restaurants from offering their customers the convenience of an adult beverage. The Murphy administration’s plan is to make restaurant liquor licenses less expensive and more readily available. Both are laudable goals, but the governor’s initiative has encountered resistance from an array of special interests, and legislators are now focusing more narrowly on the issue.Continue Reading Liquor License Issue Is 2-Part Problem: Here’s 2-Part Solution

Late last night, Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) announced that proposed changes to the tax treatment of carried interest, strongly opposed by the commercial real estate industry, would be removed from the Inflation Reduction Act. This is the latest in a string of unsuccessful efforts in Congress in the last decade or so to change the

Legislation was introduced in Trenton this week that would allow developers to opt for an expedited construction plan review program, pursuant to which an agency would have ten (10) calendar days to render a decision under the State Uniform Construction Code Act, N.J.A.C. 52:27D-119, et seq. The bill, sponsored by Assemblyman Robert J. Karabinchak, would allow a municipal governing body to adopt a program requiring its construction code enforcing agency to conduct such expedited plan reviews at the request of property owners. In the event a municipality elects not to offer the optional program, the bill provides for the licensure and authorization of private plan review agencies to conduct such expedited plan reviews. The municipal enforcing agency would retain jurisdiction over projects, including the issuance of the certificate of occupancy, regardless of whether an expedited review is conducted by the municipality’s code enforcement personnel or a private plan review agency.Continue Reading Legislation Introduced to Establish Optional LSRP-Styled Municipal Construction Code Review Program

Bill Would Now Give County Planning Boards, State Planning Commission say in “Large Warehouse” Applications before NJ Land Use Boards

A bill pending in the New Jersey State Legislature would send developers to county planning boards or the State Planning Commission for an added layer of approvals when adjacent towns object to warehouse development projects outside of their jurisdiction. The revised version of the bill, sponsored by State Senate President Steve Sweeney and co-sponsored by State Senator Troy Singleton, still gives neighboring towns a say in whether warehouse development is approved across their borders. [CLICK HERE TO READ OUR PREVIOUS POST ON THE ORIGINALLY INTRODUCED BILL.] However, instead of creating “Inter-Municipal Land Use Boards” to consider the regional impact of the proposed warehouse development when neighboring towns object, as the original version of the bill prescribed, the revised bill would require the county planning board to hold a hearing on the regional impacts of any proposed warehouse project opposed by neighboring towns. The revised version of the bill goes further and provides that when a warehouse project is proposed in a town that borders another county, the State Planning Commission would hold the hearing (instead of the county planning board) to consider the regional impacts of the proposed warehouse development. The revised legislation also removes language defining what constitutes a “retail warehouse” that would trigger the requirement for the added layer of approvals when neighboring towns object. Instead, the revised bill leaves it up to the State Planning Commission to define what constitutes a “Large Warehouse.”Continue Reading Legislation Creating “Inter-Municipal” Land Use Boards Revised, Approved in Senate Committee

A bill just introduced in the New Jersey State Legislature could significantly slow the development of warehouse space even as demand soars nationwide. The bill, sponsored by State Senate President Stephen M. Sweeney, would amend the Municipal Land Use Law (N.J.S.A. 40:55D-1, et seq.) to require a town where a new warehouse development is pending to invite neighboring towns into the land use approval process — thereby extending what is already an onerous, time-consuming, and costly process by requiring an additional layer of approvals. Under the proposed legislation, a host municipality would be required to provide notice to each adjoining municipality whenever an application for a “retail warehouse” is filed and deemed complete and at least 30 days prior to the scheduled public hearing on the application. The bill defines “retail warehouse” as a facility designed for the storage of goods and materials with restricted access to the general public and does not include facilities that repackage or assemble products.
Continue Reading “Inter-Municipal” Land Use Boards? Proposed Legislation Would Include Neighboring Towns in Review of Warehouse Development Applications

The new “NJ Aspire” incentive program, enacted last week by Gov. Murphy as part of the Economic Recovery Act of 2020, is intended to close project financing gaps in proposed redevelopment projects through the issuance of transferable/pledgeable state tax credits. The program replaces the Economic Redevelopment Growth (ERG) grant program that expired in June 2019.