Real Property & Environmental Law Alert

Real Property & Environmental Law Alert

Transactional Real Estate, Development/Redevelopment & Environmental Law

Tag Archives: Land Use

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

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

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 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

Brand New Philadelphia Zoning Code Amended After Only 5 Months

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
Well that didn't take long. Last August, following a four year process, the City of Philadelphia's comprehensive new zoning code became law. Because of the law's broad scope and sweeping changes, it was agreed that the Code would be revisited one year after its enactment to determine its effectiveness and to consider making any necessary changes. Yet, on January 24, 2013, a mere 5 months later ,the Philadelphia City Council, overriding a veto by Mayor Michael Nutter, passed Bill No. 120889 by a vote of 13-3 and amended the new Code, significantly complicating pre-hearing interaction between neighbors and developers which the Code was intended to streamline. While Council has enacted some minor "clean-up" amendments to the Code since August, this amendment could have substantial consequences… Continue Reading

Developer Alert: Philadelphia Looking to Establish Land Bank Under New State Legislation

Posted in Development/Redevelopment, Tax Abatement
The redevelopment of vacant and blighted parcels has been a cumbersome, frustrating and, in many cases unsuccessful, process for municipalities and developers alike. Pennsylvania's new land bank legislation could change all that. Philadelphia, with its own land bank legislation is poised to take advantage of the state legislation… Continue Reading

Gibbons Director Howard Geneslaw to Speak at Upcoming 2013 New Jersey Planning Conference

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
Howard D. Geneslaw, a Director in the Gibbons Real Property & Environmental Department, will speak at the upcoming NJ Chapter of the American Planning Association's 2013 New Jersey Planning Conference on, "The Use Variance: Whether, When and How?" The panel will cover New Jersey's unique, ever changing concept of a policy variance… Continue Reading

Rebuilding New Jersey After Sandy – Hurdles for Nonconforming Uses

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
On October 29, 2012, Superstorm Sandy devastated many areas of New Jersey, with the coastal areas seeing unprecedented devastation. Residents and business owners from the Jersey Shore, including the bayshore areas, face the daunting task of rebuilding. Many business and property owners, however, cannot simply apply for a building permit to replace damaged structures. For many, it will be an uphill legal battle to rebuild. This is particularly true for property owners who had been operating nonconforming uses… Continue Reading

Significant Amendments to New York’s SEQRA Regulations in the Works

Posted in Development/Redevelopment, Environmental & Green Issues
On July 11, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) released the draft scope for the Generic Environmental Impact Statement (GEIS) on proposed amendments to the regulations that implement the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA). These amendments, intended to streamline the SEQRA process, would create a number of significant changes to the regulations, the first changes since … Continue Reading

The New Philadelphia Zoning Code – Coming Soon to a Property Near You

Posted in Development/Redevelopment
Ready or not, the revised Philadelphia Zoning Code becomes effective on August 22, 2012. This massive and comprehensive overhaul of the Zoning Code, its first since 1962, required over four years to complete. It was coordinated by the thirty-one member Philadelphia Zoning Code Commission, and is the culmination of countless hours of work by the ZCC, including scores of regular meetings, informational meetings, community meetings, meetings with stakeholder groups and public hearings. The changes from the current Code are many and significant, with important modifications to base and overlay zoning districts, use categories, area and bulk requirements, floor area ratio calculations, parking standards and, perhaps most meaningful, the administrative process. We will be examining these and other major revisions in this blog on a regular basis, both as the Code's implementation date approaches as well as after it is in effect… Continue Reading

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

Posted in Development/Redevelopment, Environmental & Green Issues, Transactional Real Estate & Leasing
Twelve 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. In addition, Russell B. Bershad, Co-Chair of the Gibbons Real Property & Environmental Department, was listed as a top 100 attorney in New Jersey. Overall, 69 lawyers in the firm were featured in these two publications… Continue Reading

The Extension of the Permit Extension Act is on the Move, To Be Reviewed Today By Assembly Appropriations Committee

Posted in Development/Redevelopment, Environmental & Green Issues, Transactional Real Estate & Leasing
About two months ago, several NJ Legislators, including State Senator Paul Sarlo (Bergen/Passaic) and Assemblyman Ronald Dancer, proposed bills that would amend the 2008 "Permit Extension Act." Designed to give developers breathing room in the sluggish economy by extending the validity of development approvals, Proposed Bill S743 (the "Bill" or "S743") is gaining traction and is moving through the necessary legislative committees. On March 5, 2012, S743 passed by a vote of 4-0 by the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee. The Bill is scheduled to go before the Assembly Appropriations Committee on March 12, … Continue Reading

The Permit Extension Act May Keep Extending

Posted in Development/Redevelopment, Environmental & Green Issues, Transactional Real Estate & Leasing
Apparently concerned that the economy may not be recovering rapidly enough, the 215th New Jersey Legislature now convened, introduced a new bill (A337) on January 10, 2012, by Assemblyman Ronald S. Dancer of District 12, to change the definition of the "extension period" under the Permit Extension Act so that it runs through December 31, 2015. Therefore, based on the 6-month tolling provision currently in the Permit Extension Act, approvals received for development applications during the extension period could be extended as far out as June 30, 2016. Bill A337 has been referred to the Assembly Housing and Local Government Committee… Continue Reading

NJ Charges Forward with Electric Vehicle Network

Posted in Environmental & Green Issues
On October 20, 2011, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Bob Martin announced that New Jersey signed an agreement with other states and the District of Columbia to develop a Northeast Electric Vehicle Network and promote alternative transportation fuels. This announcement comes less than one month after New Jersey, along with the other members of the Transportation and Climate Initiative, received a federal grant of nearly $1 million to start planning a network of charging stations for electric vehicles (EVs). The goal of the Network is to bolster economic growth, maintain the region's leadership in the clean energy economy and reduce the area's dependence on oil and its emissions of greenhouse gases and other pollutants… Continue Reading
Lexblog