Deadline Draws Near for Public Notification at Ongoing New Jersey Cleanup Sites

July 6, 2009
by BRUCE KATCHER and CHRISTOPHER BALL
MGKF Special Alert

September 2, 2009marks the deadline by which most ongoing contaminated site cleanups in New Jersey must meet the State's enhanced public notification requirements that were adopted last year. These requirements mandate that a party responsible for cleaning up a contaminated site, whether voluntarily or by direction of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), that is undergoing a remedial investigation or remedial action, must:

  • Post a sign or distribute notification letters informing surrounding property owners, tenants and municipal officials of the presence of contamination and planned remediation activities.
  • Complete and submit to NJDEP and local officials a checklist and map identifying and locating sensitive local populations and resources.
  • Where there is off-site contamination, prepare and distribute a fact sheet to the surrounding community and publish it in a local newspaper.
  • Comply with any additional public outreach requirements imposed by NJDEP where the agency determines that site-specific conditions or substantial public interest warrant such measures.
  • Distribute additional notification letters where a planned remediation will bring contaminated material (e.g., fill) on-site in excess of the amount necessary to complete remediation requirements or construct engineering controls.

The regulations do not distinguish between sites undergoing remediation under state or federal oversight.

With the September 2 deadline approaching, and base penalties for failure to comply with certain of the notification requirements running as high as $8,000 per day, now is the time to ensure compliance.

If you want to learn more about the steps necessary to address the State's public notification requirements, please contact Bruce Katcher (bkatcher@mgkflaw.com; 484-430-2320) or Christopher Ball (cball@mgkflaw.com; 484-430-2358). In addition, please contact us if you would like to discuss the applicability of the new New Jersey Licensed Site Remediation Professional (LSRP) requirements.