MTA/NJ Member Alert:
DEP Adopts Coastal Zone Management Rule Changes
The MTA/NJ is pleased to update that on June 2, 2015, the DEP officially adopted amendments and significant changes to the Coastal Permit Program Rules, N.J.A.C. 7:7 and Coastal Zone Management Rules, N.J.A.C. 7:7E. They are now in one chapter, the Coastal Zone Management (CZM) rules, codified at N.J.A.C. 7:7. The adoption was published in the July 6, 2015 New Jersey Register and so the amendments, repeals and new rules are now effective.
The adoption will be available from the Department's Rules and Regulations web page at www.nj.gov/dep/rules/adoptions.html as well as the Division of Land Use Regulation's Laws and Rules web page at www.nj.gov/dep/landuse/lawsregs.html.
The MTA/NJ has been working hard pushing for regulatory change for many years and specifically on these rules since 2011. These positive changes are the direct result of the MTA/NJ's efforts in working with DEP leadership to further promote and protect the industry and will make it easier for marinas to obtain permits, to conduct needed maintenance, expansion projects and facilitate compliance with DEP regulations. This is a significant victory for the industry and a positive step forward in helping to protect and grow boating in New Jersey. Thank you to everyone that attended meetings, testified and submitted comments in support of these changes.
The MTA/NJ will be reviewing the final rule adoption and will update members on any changes in more detail if needed. In the meantime, below are highlights of some of the changes:
- Amended rules to provide greater flexibility to construct new or expand existing marinas in certain circumstances and allow for the construction of restaurants at existing marinas;
- Repealed the marina development rules that set design standards that greatly impeded a marina's ability to redevelop or expand;
- Amended rules to allow for the expansion of an existing marina or construction of a new marina in certain "infill" situations in shellfish habitat;
- Amended the recreational docks and piers rule and modified the spacing requirements to allow alternative dock design;
- Amended the definition of maintenance dredging to provide flexibility in demonstrating that a proposed dredging activity qualifies as maintenance dredging;
- Simplified the permitting process for minor dredging projects and encourages the beneficial use of dredge material;
- Created two General Permits- by-Certification and modified several other existing general permits to expand their scope and/or add flexibility to the rules which would make it easier for marinas to undertake projects.
Please note: To facilitate the implementation of the amendments to the rules governing the permitting process, the Division has revised its application form and updated the coastal application checklists. All applications received by the Division on or after the effective date of the amendments, July 6, 2015, must use the new application form to be determined administratively complete. The new application form and checklists are now available and are located on the "Forms & Checklists" (http://nj.gov/dep/landuse/forms.html ) webpage.
These checklists should be utilized for all applications submitted to the Department after the date of adoption. Also, please note that in accordance with N.J.A.C. 7:7-26.1(e), the Department, in reviewing pending applications, will apply the requirements of the CZM rules in effect at the time the application is declared complete for review.
If you have any questions or need assistance, please contact the MTA/NJ office at 732-292-1051.