The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) has released a courtesy copy of the proposed Inland Flood Protection Rules. These rules are scheduled to be published in the December 5 register, triggering a 60-day comment period that will run through February 3, 2023. A virtual public hearing will be held at 1 p.m. on January 11, 2023.
While the NJDEP hosted a number of public outreach sessions over the last week, speaking about the rule in generalities, this is the first time a copy of the rule proposal has been made available to the public.
The proposed rule would update New Jersey’s existing flood hazard and stormwater regulations by replacing current precipitation estimates with modern data that attempts to account for observed and projected increases in rainfall. The updated standards would apply to certain new and substantially reconstructed development in inland riverine areas that are subject to flooding, but they do not prohibit development in these flood hazard areas.
Under the two primary components of the rule:
- The elevation of habitable first floors would be two feet higher than currently indicated on NJDEP state flood maps and three feet higher than indicated on FEMA maps.
- Applicants for certain permits would use NJDEP’s New Jersey-specific precipitation data when calculating peak flow rates of streams and rivers for permits under the Flood Hazard Area Control Act Rules, N.J.A.C. 7:13, as well as when proposed development triggers compliance with DEP’s Stormwater Management rules, N.J.A.C. 7:8.
The League is currently reviewing the rule language and we anticipate having more information available shortly.
Contact: Frank Marshall, Esq., Associate General Counsel, firstname.lastname@example.org, 609-695-3481, x137.