NJ Likely to Focus on Growth Control, Open Space Preservation
As part of the new Corzine administration's development regulatory agenda, the long delayed rule proposal to regulate (and limit development in) upland endangered and threatened wildlife and plant habitat may finally see the light of day. Surface water quality standards to include wildlife criteria may be proposed and renewal and reevaluation of the Garden State Preservation Trust, which funds the purchase of open space, will be pursued. Greater attention may be paid to preservation of open space in urban areas. During the campaign, the Governor called for repealing the Fast Track permitting law and replacing it with a program to streamline the process for growth in urban areas, as did the transition report; this will likely be pursued. Although the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection proposal to withdraw approval of a large number of sewer service area designations in State Plan Planning Areas 3, 4 and 5 was recently withdrawn, developers likely have not heard the end of this issue.