NJDEP Adopts New “Common Sense” Waiver Rule

Posted by on Mar 5, 2012 in DEP Rules, Notice Requirements, Variances

By: Henry T. Chou, Esq.
In response to Governor Christie’s Executive Order No 2, which directs state agencies to implement reforms furthering common sense principles, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) has adopted a new rule that gives NJDEP the flexibility to modify compliance with rules in certain circumstances that do not compromise protections to the environment and public health. Requests for waivers will be accepted beginning on August 1, 2012.

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Court Holds Inclusionary Development Qualifies as “Inherently Beneficial Use” in Use Variance Applications

Posted by on Jul 8, 2011 in COAH and Affordable Housing Issues, Variances

By: Henry T. Chou, Esq.
On June 16, 2011, the Law Division of the Superior Court issued a decision in Estaugh Commons v. Haddonfield Borough Zoning Board of Adjustment that makes it harder for municipal land use boards to deny use variance applications by developers seeking to build affordable housing. At issue in the lawsuit was whether an inclusionary development proposed by a private developer should have been considered an “inherently beneficial use” by the Zoning Board of Adjustment when evaluating the developer’s use variance application.

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Challenges to Planning Board Decisions Get More Complex

Posted by on Jul 21, 2010 in Municipal Land Use Law, Variances

By: Michael J. Lipari, Esq.
In a decision just issued by the Appellate Division, the court held that if a trial court hearing a challenge to a planning board decision perceives a substantial question concerning the validity of the zoning ordinance under which the approval was sought, the court should join the governing body to the action and determine the validity of the zoning ordinance prior to hearing the merits of the board’s decision. (See Jackson Holdings, Inc. v. Jackson Township Planning Board.)

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Legislators to Introduce Bill Overriding Court Decision on Affordable Housing

Posted by on Sep 28, 2009 in COAH and Affordable Housing Issues, Municipal Land Use Law, Variances

By: Henry T. Chou, Esq.
Lawmakers have reacted swifty to the Appellate Division’s recent decision that affordable housing must be accorded “inherently beneficial” status when proposed in use variance applications, even if a town has already otherwise met all affordable housing obligations assigned by the Council on Affordable Housing (COAH).

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Appellate Division Holds Affordable Housing Qualifies as “Inherently Beneficial Use” in Use Variance Applications

Posted by on Aug 26, 2009 in COAH and Affordable Housing Issues, Municipal Land Use Law, Variances

By: Henry T. Chou, Esq.
On August 24, 2009, the Appellate Division issued a decision in Homes of Hope v. Eastampton Land Use Planning Board that makes it harder for municipal land use boards to deny use variance applications by developers seeking to build affordable housing. At issue in the lawsuit was whether a 100% affordable housing project proposed by a non-profit developer should have been considered an “inherently beneficial use” by the Eastampton Land Use Board when evaluating the developer’s use variance application.

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