NJDEP Issues Administrative Order Extending WMP Submission Deadline
On March 24, 2010, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection ("NJDEP") issued an administrative order (the "Order") that immediately extended the submission deadline for all wastewater management plans ("WMPs") until April 7, 2011, a move with significant ramifications for New Jersey developers. During the extension period, NJDEP will work with the designated wastewater management planning agencies at the county and municipal levels to assist in the development of WMPs on an expedited basis. Pursuant to the Order, NJDEP has also committed not to withdraw any wastewater service area designation prior to April 7, 2011. Further, any property that is already included in an adopted sewer service area in an existing WMP will not be removed from a future sewer service area as part of an updated WMP if the property owner can demonstrate that the project has the approvals required by the regulations. Finally, NJDEP has provided for greater public participation in the wastewater service area delineation process. All of these changes are aimed at improving the quality of WMP submissions and eliminating uncertainty regarding the potential withdrawal of wastewater service area designations, which is a source of concern to both public and private entities. New Jersey property owners should evaluate their projects in light of this Order and determine whether their sewer service area affects the development potential of their properties.