DEP Commissioner announced that the Department is moving forward with proposing rules relating to inland flood areas. Earlier this year, DEP had prepared to issue new flood area rules on an “Emergency” basis. The rule concepts put forward by DEP would dramatically expand areas identified as Flood Hazard Areas, and further limit activities in those areas. After significant uproar from municipalities, counties, other state agencies and the development community, the “Emergency Rule” concept was pulled back.
On September 1, the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA) announced its plan to institute a new financial incentive program called the “Brownfields Redevelopment Incentive (BRI) Program,” part of the New Jersey Economic Recovery Act, to spur brownfield redevelopment in New Jersey. The EDA requested public feedback based on information it provided to the public (EDA Information), so that it may tweak the program before the program is established. The EDA held information sessions on September 7 and 8, to present a summary of the program. The slides provided by the EDA at the BRI information sessions are linked here and provide a detailed summary of the program. Following are highlights of key aspects of the proposed program, as set forth in the EDA Information:
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 tax treatment of carried interest. The changes would have unfairly penalized projects that use financing from outside investors. Undertaking costly brownfield remediation and redevelopment requires substantial upfront risk and costs. Disincentivizing this risk-taking would have especially impacted the commercial real estate industry’s ability to reposition office and retail properties that have been impacted by remote work, e-commerce and the pandemic. The Senate is expected to start the voting process on the Inflation Reduction Act this weekend, with final passage of this significant legislation possible by the end of next week.
Sources in Trenton report that the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) will announce on Monday a delay in publishing the “emergency rule” that was the subject of our June 3 Alert. After feedback from a number of impacted stakeholders, including municipalities, DEP is expected to announce a pause in the publication of the “emergency rule” to allow for more stakeholder input, issue FAQs and release a schedule of stakeholder meetings.
Anyone with a pending or planned project that involves either an area near a non-tidal river or stream or a project that is subject to DEP’s stormwater rules will likely need to reassess the scope of the project if approvals are pending.
The “emergency rule” is the first salvo of the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP)’s Protection Against Climate Threat (PACT) regulatory initiative. DEP will be side-stepping the normal rule making requirements and adopting changes to rules covering Fluvial (river system) Flood Hazard Areas (FHAs) and Stormwater Rules.
As seen on: www.app.com
By: Daniel Munoz
Warehouses and distribution centers are popping up across New Jersey as consumers embrace online shopping, and the state’s top lawmakers seem to have little appetite for legislation to slow the trend.
Despite complaints about “warehouse sprawl” from some local communities and environmental groups, leading Democrats and Republicans told an industry group Wednesday that they’re in no rush to advance statewide regulations.
The City of Newark recently introduced an ordinance that would amend its Inclusionary Zoning Ordinance (“IZO”) to expand the scope of the IZO, while offering certain density and other bonuses to developers. The City Council voted to introduce the ordinance on first reading and refer the ordinance to the Central Planning Board for review. After the Central Planning Board reviews the legislation, the ordinance will go back to the City Council for a second and final reading, and potential adoption.
Source: News From The Senate Democrats
TRENTON – In an effort to improve economic growth and development in distressed communities and neighborhoods, the Senate Community and Urban Affairs Committee passed legislation today sponsored by Senator Troy Singleton, which would require a cost-benefit analysis for any long-term tax exemptions. The analysis would provide information on the net impact on local revenue if tax breaks were granted for new development projects.
“These tax abatements are intended to provide incentives for new projects that will create jobs and generate economic opportunities in our communities, and the cost-benefit analysis will show the long-term impact of the potential abatements,” said Senator Singleton (D-Burlington), Chair of the Senate Community and Urban Affairs Committee. “There should be an immediate or long-term financial gain for the municipality and its residents.”
The bill, S2546, would require the Department of Community Affairs (DCA) to create a database of any long-term tax exemptions. Additionally, the bill would also require that five-year tax exemption and abatement agreements be filed with certain county officials.
Three recently introduced bills in the New Jersey State Legislature could hint at an emerging policy shift away from the state’s time-honored respect for “home rule” and towards a more regional approach to land use planning. While the proposed legislation does not eliminate a local municipality’s jurisdiction to consider certain land use applications, the introduction of additional regional planning approaches could lead to a general erosion of home rule. Specifically, the introduction of Senate Bill 3910 would create the “Palisades Cliffs Protection and Planning Act,” aimed at protecting the Gold Coast from high-rise development. Similarly, Senate Bill 3688 would require certain warehouse development projects to seek approval from County planning boards or the State Planning Commission prior to receiving local land use approvals. Those warehouse development opportunities (and any other development opportunities) would diminish further by the enactment of proposed Assembly Bill 5793, which would prohibit municipalities from designating farmland as an area in need of redevelopment or rehabilitation area.
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.