March 18, 2009
League Statement on Council on Local Mandates Ruling in
Medford Township Challenge
Today the Council on Local Mandates considered the complaint filed by Medford Township which asserted the COAH 3rd round regulations and PL 2008, c. 46 (aka A-500) were unfunded State mandates. The League participated as amicus (friend of the court) in support of Medford.
The Council did not address the substantive issues related to the validity of the COAH regulations or the law. Instead, the Council ruled that it does not have jurisdiction in the matter. The basis of this ruling is the provision in the state constitution which exempts constitutional obligations from the local mandates provision.
We respect the Council’s decision and we thank them for their consideration.
Since the Council did not weigh the substantive issues, but rather dismissed the complaint on jurisdictional grounds, this decision has no impact on the on-going challenges of the COAH regulation in the Appellate Division. In fact, members of the Council expressed reservations during today’s argument about dealing with the substantive issues since these issues are currently in front of the Appellate Division.
To date, 258 municipalities have pledged support to the League’s challenge of the COAH 3rd round regulations. The League, as well as the twenty-three other appellants, will file response briefs to COAH’s brief, which was filed on March 9, in early April.
A summary of the League’s brief challenging the COAH regulations filed with the Appellate Division on January 5, is online at: http://www.njslom.org/COAH-Executive-Summary-NJLM-Challenge.pdf
For further information contact: William G. Dressel, Jr., Executive Director at (609)695-3481, extension 122 or 609-915-9072.