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Environmental Law Blog

Categories: Real Estate Development

NJDEP Notification Requirements Remain – Despite COVID-19 Concerns

March 26, 2020

Last week the NJDEP issued a Compliance Advisory reminding the regulated community that, despite the COVID-19 concerns, all of the requirements to notify NJDEP remain in effect.

The reason for the reminder is so that the regulated community continues to be diligent in their efforts to notify NJDEP in accordance with applicable environmental statutes, rules and their operating permits. As these are unpredictable times, there could be operational disruptions, shutdowns or other failures that unintentionally cause permit exceedances or additional concerns that may require notification to NJDEP, such as spills or discharges of hazardous substances. These notifications are critical to inform NJDEP as well as other specified governmental agencies about potential impacts to the environment and human health and safety.

As such, there is no reprieve to notify NJDEP if notification obligations are triggered by circumstances, whether or not a true emergency exists. NJDEP has indicated that they may pursue enforcement action and penalties against those entities that fail to comply with the NJDEP mandated notification requirements. Although it is unclear how aggressive NJDEP will be in enforcing these notification requirements, it would be prudent to continue to effectively monitor your business’s reporting and notification obligations during this chaotic time. If you need assistance in evaluating whether a reporting obligation exists for your business, please feel free to reach out to one of our environmental attorneys.

Attorney: Douglas Eilender
Related Practice: Environmental Law
Category: Environmental Liability, Environmental Remediation, Real Estate Development, Environmental Regulatory Compliance, Contaminated Property Transactions, Environmentally Sensitive Businesses

New Jersey DEP Announces Registration Deadline For Companies Whose Operations Involve Soil and Fill Recyclable Material

February 28, 2020

Businesses conducting soil and fill recyclable material services that do not already possess an A-901 license have until April 20, 2020 to register with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection as a first step to comply with a newly enacted licensing law requiring greater oversight of those activities, DEP Commissioner Catherine R. McCabe announced today.  An A-901 license is issued by the state after the Attorney General's Office, New Jersey State Police and the DEP review the application filed by the business that is designed to demonstrate that the business is not involved with organized crime. 

Governor Phil Murphy signed the law - known as the "Dirty Dirt Bill" on Jan. 21, expanding the DEP's oversight of companies that engage in, or provide, soil and fill recycling services including collection, transportation, processing, brokering, storage, purchase, sale or disposition of soil and fill recyclable materials.

Commissioner McCabe said that now “the DEP and our local partners are in a better position to take action to address problematic fill material and companies engaged in these activities.  These new tools will empower the state and local governments to ensure that the soil and fill brought into our communities is clean and safe, while helping us defend against illegal dumping of soil and fill."

The law also requires affected companies that do not already possess an A-901 license to submit an application and a disclosure statement to the Attorney General's Office detailing their work with soil and fill material in order to receive a soil and fill recycling license for operations in New Jersey by Oct. 19, 2020.  Businesses that do not register by the April 20, 2020 deadline or businesses that apply for a license thereafter and do not meet the license review requirements will no longer be allowed to perform soil or fill recycling services work in New Jersey.

The part of the law most favorable to businesses allows those that register to continue their services while awaiting a license. Those who apply for a  license after the deadline will have to wait for the license before continuing soil and fill recycling services.

The law firm of Mandelbaum Barrett has experience assisting businesses with obtaining the licenses and approvals from the DEP, including A-901 licenses.  

Attorney: Gordon Duus
Related Practice: Environmental Law
Category: Environmental Regulatory Compliance, Environmentally Sensitive Businesses, Real Estate Development