January 31, 2012
Re: A-1338, Extends and Expands Permit Extension Act of 2008
On Monday, the Assembly Housing and Local Government Committee amended and approved A-1338, which further extends the provisions of the Permit Extension Act an additional two years, until December 31, 2014. This amended bill also expands the original law, creating a definition of “extension area” which would expand the Act into parts of the State not included in the original law.
The League testified in opposition to the bill, focusing on the unwarranted expansion of the Act. We previously alerted you regarding this legislation at the end of the last legislative term in our December 9 Dear Mayor alert. This bill was reintroduced for the new legislative session, and the objections we earlier noted still remain. Specifically, A-1338 would expand the original Act to include the entire Highlands Planning Area, Planning area 4 (Rural) and Planning Area 3 (Fringe Planning Area.)
In addition to the League, the bill was generally opposed by environmental groups and “smart growth” planning advocates. The bill is supported by the development community. There is strong, bipartisan support in the Legislature for another permit extension, based on the belief this bill will assist economic development and promote jobs. We are encouraged that a number of Committee members, particularly Assemblywomen Mila Jasey (D-27) and Annette Quijano (D-20), expressed similar concerns to that of the League.
A-1338 stands at 2nd reading in the Assembly and could be posted for a full vote as soon as February 16. The Senate companion, S-743, is assigned to the Senate Economic Growth Committee but has not yet been scheduled for a hearing. We urge you to contact your legislators and urge them to oppose this expansion of the Permit Extension Act.
Questions on this bill can be directed to Mike Cerra at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (609) 695-3481 x120.
Very truly yours,
William G. Dressel, Jr.