Prohibition of Sewage Lines In Environmentally Sensitive Area Upheld
July 4 2011 - In the Matter of the Adoption of N.J.A.C. 7:15-5.24(b) and N.J.A.C. 7:15-5.25(e), the New Jersey Appellate Division upheld the validity of two provisions of the DEP's Water Quality Management Planning Rules: N.J.A.C. 7:15-5.24, which prohibits the extension of sewage lines in environmentally sensitive areas, and N.J.A.C. 7:15-5.25(e), which sets a minimum nitrate level for septic system discharge. The Court rejected the developer's contention that these provisions are ultra vires and constitute non water-related land-use regulation, and concluded that the rules are authorized by a host of statutes that empower the DEP to set water quality standards and in doing so to consider related environmental, social and land-use policies. The Court noted that the agency's decision which essentially structures sewage lines to limit the density of development in environmentally sensitive areas is the most efficient and beneficial way to address water quality concerns in environmentally sensitive areas and thus represents a valid and reasonable exercise of the DEP’s statutory authority.
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The Law Office of Christopher D. Hopkins, LLC is a boutique law firm located in Scotch Plains, New Jersey committed to providing the highest quality of legal services in the select areas of real estate, land use and environmental law. The firm is committed to working collaboratively with clients to achieve practical, cost effective results- whether it be in complex litigation, transactions, cleanups and/or development projects. The firm provides transactional and litigation counsel to a broad spectrum of clients including private and public corporations, trade associations, nonprofit institutions, banks, real estate investment trusts and individuals in New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania.
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