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Posted Saturday, May 9th, 2020

Seeks to Ensure Adequate Public Engagement

As part of New Jersey’s response to COVID-19, state Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Catherine McCabe has signed an administrative order to extends deadlines for public comment on applications in Morris County and across the state for certain permits and approvals to ensure opportunities for meaningful public engagement during the COVID-19 pandemic.COVID-19: DEP Extends Public Comment Period on Permit Applications During Pandemic

The administrative order extends the minimum public comment periods on applications for the following:

  • Individual and general permits under the Coastal Zone Management rules, Freshwater Wetlands Protection Act rules and the Flood Hazard Area Control Act rules;
  • Water quality management plans;
  • Water allocation, water usage certifications and temporary dewatering permits;
  • Solid waste facility and hazardous waste permits;
  • Certain preconstruction and draft operating permits under the Air Pollution Control Rules.

For details about the extension for each public comment period, refer to Administrative Order 2020-06

Administrative Order 2020-06 follows Governor Phil Murphy’s Executive Order 136 which extended statutory timelines for DEP to make certain permitting decisions and adjusts reporting timelines for some of New Jersey’s environmental laws.

These actions provide permit applicants with additional time to work with DEP on application requirements and provides DEP with the time it needs to ensure its decisions remain protective of public health, safety and the environment while affording the public the opportunity to inform those decisions.

DEP will continue to review requests and issue decisions within or as close as possible to standard decision-making timelines.

Here is a full list of the DEP’s COVID-19 regulatory compliance updates.