Real Property & Environmental Law Alert

Real Property & Environmental Law Alert

Transactional Real Estate, Development/Redevelopment & Environmental Law

Category Archives: Development/Redevelopment

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Highlands Council Schedules Stakeholder Outreach Workshops and Will Accept Written Comments

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
The New Jersey Highlands Council has scheduled three Stakeholder Outreach Workshops to solicit public input on the Highlands Regional Master Plan (RMP) as part of its RMP Monitoring Program. According to public notices issued by the Highlands Council, the workshops are intended to provide members of the public with an opportunity to learn more about the monitoring program and to provide input. The notices also state, “[t]he Monitoring Program evaluates progress toward achieving the goals of the Highlands Regional Master Plan,” and “[t]he program requires identification of indicators and milestones to measure the impact of the Regional Master Plan on water resources, agriculture, housing, transportation, and economic development within the Highlands Region.”… Continue Reading

Tolling of Approvals Under New Jersey’s Permit Extension Act: Will The End Of The Year Be The End Of The Line? Approved Projects Could Be At Risk

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
New Jersey's Permit Extension Act (“PEA”) was initially enacted in 2008 — in response to “the crisis in the real estate finance sector of the economy” — for the purpose of tolling, through the end of 2012, expiration of various approvals necessary for development. It was later extended, in 2012, due to the then “current national recession,” to extend the tolling of the expiration of those approvals until December 31, 2014. Unless the Legislature approves a further extension, the PEA will sunset at the end of this year, and that could pose a problem for projects which have not yet started construction, because their approvals may expire… Continue Reading

NJDEP Document Review Process Curtailed: More Autonomy for LSRPs

Posted in Development/Redevelopment, Environmental & Green Issues
Unable to keep up with submittals from Licensed Site Remediation Professionals (LSRP) and with the resulting increase in review times, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) has recently decided to defer the review of non-Response Action Outcome (RAO) documents until an RAO is submitted. This announcement comes four years into the LSRP program, which as designed, has begun to eliminate the backlog of contaminated sites awaiting attention. However, the very success of the LSRP program has created its own backlog as NJDEP finds itself falling behind in review of submittals… Continue Reading

Potential Change Coming to NJ’s Economic Opportunity Act

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
The “New Jersey Economic Opportunity Act of 2013” overhauled New Jersey’s economic development programs. The Act retooled and substantially enhanced the State’s job creation and retention program known as the Grow NJ Assistance Program (Grow NJ), as well as the Economic Redevelopment Growth (ERG) Grant Program, the incentive program that provides gap financing to developers. As we wrote in Commerce magazine, Grow NJ and ERG improve New Jersey’s economic competitiveness with our neighboring states and may be game-changers for businesses and developers. After seeing the programs in action for under a year, the Legislature has revisited the programs to make technical changes and to further enhance NJ’s economic development arsenal… Continue Reading

Gibbons Director Installed as Secretary of the Land Use Section of the New Jersey State Bar Association

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
Howard D. Geneslaw, a Director in the Gibbons Real Property & Environmental Department, was installed as Secretary of the Land Use Section of the New Jersey State Bar Association (NJSBA) at the section’s annual meeting, held during the NJSBA’s Annual Meeting and Convention in Atlantic City in mid-May. This position places Mr. Geneslaw in line to become Vice Chair of the section next year, and Chair of the section the following year… Continue Reading

David J. Freeman to Chair Panel on Brownfield Reform at New York State Bar Association Environmental Law Section Fall Meeting

Posted in Development/Redevelopment, Environmental & Green Issues
David J. Freeman, a Director at Gibbons P.C., will chair a panel on reform of New York State’s Brownfield Cleanup Program at the Fall Meeting of the Environmental Law Section of the New York State Bar Association. The panel will discuss the Governor’s and Legislature’s actions this year―passage of an extension of the tax credit aspects of the Program, without enacting underlying reforms―and what is likely to happen next year. It will feature such prominent experts as Edward McTiernan, General Counsel of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation; Christopher Goeken, Director of Public Policy and Governmental Relations of the New York League of Conservation Voters; Darren Suarez, Director of Governmental Affairs of the New York State Business Counsel; Jody Kass, Executive Director of New Partners for Community Revitalization; Philip Bousquet, Partner at Bousquet Holstein; and Linda Shaw, Partner at Knauf Shaw… Continue Reading

NJDEP Clarifies Obligation to Remediate Contamination from Historic Pesticide Use

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection has more formally confirmed the scope of the responsibility to address historic pesticide use on commercial and industrial properties: namely that a party need not remediate historic pesticide use unless there is a land use change to residences, schools, child care centers and playgrounds. On June 20, 2014, the NJDEP published an additional notice for Response Action Outcomes, the written determination by a Licensed Site Remediation Professional that a remediation is complete, which specifically permits completion of a remediation without investigation of contamination from historic pesticide use. The notice would only apply to contamination from the application of such pesticides to, for example, a former orchard or farm, but not contamination from a discharge caused by the mixing, manufacturing or other handling of such chemicals. NJDEP approval is not required for an LSRP to use this notice… Continue Reading

Susanne Peticolas Authors Section on Bankruptcy for NJ Environmental Law Handbook

Posted in Development/Redevelopment, Environmental & Green Issues
Susanne Peticolas, a Director in the Gibbons Real Property & Environmental Department, contributed a section on environmental issues in bankruptcy to the 8th edition of the New Jersey Environmental Law Handbook. Her section discusses the issues created by the conflicting policies underlying bankruptcy law, focusing on a fresh start for the debtor, as well as environmental law, which focuses on making the polluter pay. The section covers a wide range of relevant topics, including which environmental claims are bankruptcy “claims,” how environmental claims are impacted by the automatic stay, the identity of the claim holder, and the relief that is being sought… Continue Reading

Having Trouble Filling Out the New SEQRA Environmental Assessment Forms? NYS DEC Has Scheduled a Series of Webinars to Help Shed Some Light on the Streamlined and Revised Forms

Posted in Development/Redevelopment, Environmental & Green Issues
It’s been six months since the new model State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) Environmental Assessment Forms (EAFs) became effective on October 7, 2013, and many individuals are still scratching their heads on how to efficiently and effectively complete the forms. In an effort to assist and instruct government agencies and the public on how to use the new model EAFs, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYS DEC) has announced a series of webinars to be held this spring. The webinars are designed to demonstrate how the new EAFs, the web-based framework for the guidebooks developed by NYS DEC, and the EAF Mapper, a software mapping program, work together to streamline the EAF completion process by both project sponsors (applicants) and reviewing agencies… Continue Reading

Jason Tuvel Will Speak at the 2014 Land Use Update

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
Jason R. Tuvel, a Director in the Gibbons Real Property & Environmental Department, will be a speaker at the 2014 Land Use Update on Wednesday, March 19, 2014, in West Orange, New Jersey. The all-day program, sponsored jointly by NJICLE and the NJSBA Land Use Section, will cover the past year’s judicial decisions - both reported and unreported - as well as regulatory, legislative and ethical issues that impact this constantly evolving area of practice. The program will provide essential information and strategies for handling the latest and most challenging land use issues… Continue Reading

The Philadelphia Land Bank – What You Need to Know

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
One stop shopping. That is the goal of the bill that Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter signed into law on January 13, 2014, creating the Philadelphia Land Bank. The Land Bank, which is to be fully operational by the end of this year, is intended to streamline and consolidate the process by which the City acquires and sells vacant and tax delinquent properties. The Land Bank will also act as the single repository for the approximately 9,500 vacant and surplus properties currently owned by the City through three separate entities: the City, the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority and the Philadelphia Housing Development Corporation… Continue Reading

Funding Available for Site Remediation in New Jersey

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
On December 18, 2013, Susanne Peticolas, a Director in the Gibbons Real Property & Environmental Department, moderated a panel, "There May Be Money for Your Client for Site Remediation," sponsored by the New Jersey Bar Association's Environmental Law Section. The program focused on the Hazardous Discharge Site Remediation Fund ("HDSRF"). Michael Deely, Supervisor for NJDEP's HDSRF program, cheered the audience by reporting that the long depleted fund once again has money for site remediation grants and loans… Continue Reading

Legislature Contemplates Extension of Moratorium on Statewide Non-Residential Development Fee

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
At the end of last week, the New Jersey State Senate ("Senate") introduced Bill S3116 that proposes to continue the moratorium on the statewide non-residential development fee (the "Fee") that expired on July 1, 2013. Since July 1, 2013, developers and land use attorneys have been in a state of flux with regard to whether the fee applies to development projects. If passed, this legislation would extend the moratorium to December 31, … Continue Reading

Gibbons Real Property & Environmental Department Ranked in 2014 Best Law Firms

Posted in Development/Redevelopment, Environmental & Green Issues, Transactional Real Estate & Leasing
Gibbons P.C. is proud to announce that five practices within its Real Property & Environmental Department have achieved national and metropolitan rankings in the 2014 edition of Best Law Firms, published by U.S. News and Best Lawyers®, the oldest and most respected peer-review publication in the legal profession. In addition, 11 attorneys in the Department have been individually ranked… Continue Reading

Gibbons Director Douglas Janacek Named “2014 Lawyer Of The Year” in Land Use & Zoning Law by 2014 Best Lawyers

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
Gibbons is proud to announce that Douglas J. Janacek, Co-Chair of the Gibbons Real Property & Environmental Department, was the only New Jersey lawyer to be named a "2014 Lawyer of the Year" in Land Use & Zoning Law in the 2014 edition of Best Lawyers®. Mr. Janacek was recognized in the Newark, NJ region… Continue Reading

Throw Out Your Old SEQRA Forms – The Revised Model SEQRA Environmental Assessment Forms Take Effect October 7, 2013

Posted in Development/Redevelopment, Environmental & Green Issues
Among the many sweeping changes made in recent years to New York's State Environmental Quality Review Act ("SEQRA"), including pending SEQRA amendments and a revised SEQRA handbook, are the adoption of revised model environmental assessment forms (EAFs). The new forms were adopted by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYCDEC) back in January of 2012 and become effective as of Monday, October 7, 2013. The new EAFs can be found on NYCDEC's website… Continue Reading

MPC Alert: Amendments to Notice Requirements under PA Municipalities Planning Code

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
Starting August 31, 2013, municipalities will have to provide advance notice electronically or by mail of certain proceedings to landowners who have requested such notice in writing. Under amendments to the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code signed into law by Governor Tom Corbett on July 2, 2013, municipalities must provide landowners with the requested electronic notice or mailed notice of public hearings regarding the enactment of zoning ordinances and amendments… Continue Reading

The Price Must Be Right: U.S. Supreme Court Extends “Nexus” and “Rough Proportionality” Requirements to Monetary Exactions Linked to Development Proposals

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
It has long been the law that regulators may not condition the grant of a land-use permit on the owner's relinquishment of an interest in the property unless there is both a "nexus" and "rough proportionality" between the government's demand and the effects of the proposed land use. In a case that may have been overlooked amidst several landmark decisions handed down in the same week, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that these requirements also apply to monetary exactions… Continue Reading

Gibbons Director Howard Geneslaw to Speak at Upcoming NJSBA & NJICLE Land Use Program

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
Land use lawyers play a very important role in the building process in New Jersey. Navigating all of the litigation hurdles that can come up while the project progresses, from conception to development, requires specific skills, knowledge, and strategy. Land use attorneys are heavily involved in actual project development, whether the client is a private party, local government, or state agency. It is important to stay up-to-date on the various types of land use litigation scenarios that can arise… Continue Reading

Gibbons Advises NAIOP Award Winners on “Office/Mixed Use Deal Of The Year ” and “Industrial Deal of the Year”

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
The New Jersey Chapter of the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP - NJ) has named the development deal between Bayer Healthcare and Vision Equities/Rubenstein Partners as its "Office/Mixed Use Deal of the Year" and Ahold eCommerce's Pulaski Distribution Center as its "Industrial Deal of the Year." Gibbons P.C. played a significant role on behalf of Bayer in this deal, and the firm assisted Ahold in its complex transaction… Continue Reading

Gibbons Real Property & Environmental Lawyers Listed as Leaders in Their Fields

Posted in Construction, Development/Redevelopment, Transactional Real Estate & Leasing
Thirteen lawyers in the Gibbons Real Property & Environmental Department were listed by New Jersey Super Lawyers and New Jersey Super Lawyers Rising Stars as leaders in their fields for 2013. In addition, Department associate Uzoamaka N. Okoye was featured in a Rising Stars spotlight, in which she discusses her background and her reasons for becoming a lawyer. Overall, 80 lawyers in the firm were featured in these two publications… Continue Reading

“From Ink to Occupancy” Real Estate Program at Gibbons P.C. Armed Attendees with Fundamentals & Information on the Latest Trends

Posted in Development/Redevelopment, Transactional Real Estate & Leasing
"From Ink to Occupancy, A Game Plan for a Successful Real Estate Project," the latest installation of the Gibbons Women's Initiative Seminar Series, was held earlier last week and attracted a great crowd, including real estate professionals and in-house counsel. Nancy A. Lottinville, Jennifer M. Porter and Ivette P. Alvarado guided attendees through the nuts and bolts of a commercial real estate contract, due diligence and the land use approvals process, with a focus on New Jersey and New York. A portion of the program was also dedicated to the current "Hot Topics" of real estate in New Jersey and New York, including FEMA's Advisory Base Flood Elevations and cross-access easement issues. Thanks to various requests from attendees for more information, the RPE Law Alert will be posting blogs over the course of the next few weeks expanding on the topics covered during the program. Watch for the next installation: "Properly Identifying the Property in the Contract: Are You Sure You Know What You're Getting?"… Continue Reading