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September 9, 2008
Re:

Legislative Development
I.  Permit Extension Act
II.  Financial Disclosure for Local Officers

 

 

 

 

Dear Mayor:

Governor Corzine signed the following bills into law yesterday.

I.   Permit Extension Act – A-2867/S-1919

This new law, which was pushed by developers and opposed by environmentalists, extends the life of most building permits and approvals that otherwise have expired or would expire between January 1, 2007 and July 1, 2010 with an additional 6-months phase-in period to December 31, 2010.  

The following permits and approvals are not extended, including:

  • State Planning Area 4B (Rural/Environmentally Sensitive);
  • State Planning Area 5 (Environmentally Sensitive);
  • Highlands areas not designated for growth by the Highlands Regional Master Plan;
  • Pineland areas not designated for growth in the Comprehensive Management Plan;
  • Right-of-Way permits, permits and approvals issues by the Department of Transportation;
  • Permits and approvals issued under the Flood Hazard Area Control Act, except “where work has commenced, in any phase or section of the development, on any site improvement as defined in the Municipal Land use Law (MLUL), or on any buildings or structures.”;
  • Coastal Center designations where an application for Plan Endorsement was not submitted to the State Planning Commission as of March 15, 2007 and the designations were not in compliance with the Coastal Zone management rules. (Under the new law, all CAFRA permits will be extended.)

For additional information or questions, please contact Mike Cerra at mcerra@njslom.com or at (609) 695-3481 x120.

II.   Financial Disclosure Statement

Under this new law, local government officers are required to file financial                     disclosure statements within 30 days of taking office.

Currently, local government officers are required to annually file a financial disclosure statement by April 30.  However, this means those officials elected in non-partisan elections are not required to file for 10 months.  While we agree that 10 months is far too long for the public to wait for this information, we believe the 30 day requirement imposes a burden on newly elected local officials, likely unaware of all that the office demands.

While League supported this legislation as an area of improvement to the Local Government Ethics Law, we requested amendments to require the municipal clerk notify officials of their responsibility to file the report soon after reorganization and that newly elected officers be given 90 days to submit. A 90 day requirement with advance notice would have allowed sufficient time to gather the requisite information. Unfortunately, there was no response to this request and the bill was adopted as originally drafted and became effective immediately.

The chapter law for S-103 (Weinberg) is not yet available.

Questions can be directed to Helen Yeldell at hyeldell@njslom.com or (609) 695-3481 ext. 112.

 

                                                                        Very truly yours,

 

                                                                        William G. Dressel, Jr.
                                                                        Executive Director

 

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