State of New Jersey
Executive Order #38

Governor James E. McGreevey

WHEREAS, we are faced with a challenge of accommodating continued growth in New Jersey while ensuring that the State's citizens retain a quality of life that is not diminished by congestion and sprawl; and

WHEREAS, we will only succeed in this planning effort if we adhere to smart growth principles - in particular, we must stop subsidizing sprawl, focus on redevelopment and push for smarter regulations; and

WHEREAS, the redevelopment of designated smart growth areas complements important public policy goals of revitalizing the State's urban, suburban and rural centers and preventing endless sprawl, while avoiding the degradation of natural and agricultural resources, the impairment of environmental quality, increases in local property taxes, and the overburdening of local transportation systems and other infrastructure; and

WHEREAS, various State agencies have important roles to play in the redevelopment of localities that should be redeveloped because of their proximity to existing public services and infrastructure; and

WHEREAS, coordination among these agencies and the targeted utilization of available State resources are critical to ensuring smart growth and the conservation of undeveloped regions of the State;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, JAMES E. McGREEVEY, Governor of the State of New Jersey, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and by the Statutes of this State, do hereby ORDER and DIRECT:

  1. The Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency is hereby directed to develop and implement a self-sufficient homebuyer's incentive program for first-time purchasers of homes in areas designated for smart growth.

  2. In order to encourage redevelopment, the Economic Development Authority (EDA) shall make short-term loans available to developers to offset pre-development funding gaps and funding requirements for brownfields remediation. These loans shall be made at such rates and upon such terms as the EDA Board of Directors deems appropriate.

  3. The Commerce and Economic Growth Commission (Commerce Commission) shall continue to act as a single point of entry for businesses and developers seeking to locate or expand in New Jersey. The Commerce Commission shall continue to provide financial incentives and/or information, consistent with its current programmatic responsibilities, to existing or prospective businesses or developers concerning available incentives for business expansion, relocation or related development projects.

  4. In consultation with the Commerce Commission, the Office of Smart Growth within the Department of Community Affairs (DCA) shall establish a reasonable priority of projects and recommend investments through a "super-incentives" approach that targets existing resources for projects in areas designated for smart growth. This initiative shall coordinate, in a unified approach, all of the programs currently administered by relevant state agencies. DCA shall identify a set of permissive criteria that will provide participating, qualifying municipalities priority consideration under this unified approach.

  5. Relevant State agencies and the Office of Administrative Law shall develop and implement a system that will give priority to applications and appeals involving development and redevelopment in areas designated for smart growth.

  6. DCA shall prioritize existing resources in order to enhance technical support to municipal zoning and planning boards that commit to smart growth principles.

  7. DCA shall ensure timely inspections on a Statewide basis and implement a pilot program providing for immediate DCA inspection of projects in areas designated for smart growth whenever local code officers fail to meet the standards of timeliness set in the Uniform Construction Code.

  8. DEP, in consultation with interested State agencies, municipal governments, and affected constituents, shall initiate a comprehensive program of regulatory reforms that will increase the predictability of regulatory outcomes, facilitate smart growth, strengthen regulatory protection of public health, safety and significant environmental resources, and integrate the assumptions and planning of other agencies. DEP shall closely coordinate this effort with the Office of Smart Growth.

  9. DEP shall establish a mechanism, including appropriate safeguards, allowing the use of pre-qualified consultants to perform scientific and other professional reviews required of developers in order to expedite project review and implementation for brownfields redevelopment and in other smart growth areas as determined in coordination with the Office of Smart Growth.

  10. DEP shall develop and implement a program utilizing mitigation fees, accounts and other market approaches that will expedite the restoration of environmentally impacted properties, facilitate regulatory review, reduce uncertainty and promote cost-effective and environmentally sound approaches to smart growth.

  11. The Environmental Infrastructure Trust, under the direction of the DEP Commissioner, shall establish and implement a program to reduce infrastructure finance costs in designated smart growth areas in coordination with the Office of Smart Growth.

  12. In selected redevelopment areas (Asbury Park and Camden have been identified to date), DCA is hereby directed, in cooperation with municipalities, to develop a model approach that allows DCA to (a) serve as a point of contact for all permit applications to State agencies, track permit applications and expedite approval; (b) act as liaison between developer and State agencies granting approvals and provide the developer with status reports on the progress of State agency approvals; (c) assist in identifying features of the project that will require State agency approvals; (d) investigate areas where projects may require special consideration under State rules and assist in offering possible solutions; (e) review plans and specifications for compliance with the Uniform Construction Code; (f) issue building permits (verifying that all prior approvals have been granted) and (g) perform all necessary inspections under the Uniform Construction Code.

  13. The Department of Transportation (DOT), together with appropriate independent and bi-state authorities, shall coordinate and consult regarding the planning and implementation of transportation infrastructure. DOT shall develop a Statewide master capital plan encompassing input from all transportation authorities.

  14. DOT shall work with the DEP and all other State agencies, as required, to implement a permit coordination program to expedite capital transportation projects in designated smart growth areas.

  15. DOT shall review the processing of permit applications, including highway access permit applications, and target resources to such applications that are located in areas designated for smart growth.

  16. DOT is directed to work with New Jersey Transit and other transportation entities throughout the State to develop and maintain a master list of park-and-ride lots, including their parking capacity, at mass transit facilities and transportation centers in order to identify the capacity needs related thereto and to implement in its upcoming annual Transportation Capital Program a demonstrable commitment toward solving the parking capacity needs at the State's mass transit facilities.

  17. This Order shall take effect immediately.

GIVEN, under my hand and seal this day of in
the Year of Our Lord, Two Thousand and Two,
and of the Independence of the United States,
the Two Hundred and Twenty-Seventh.

/s/ James E. McGreevey




/s/ Paul A. Levinsohn

Chief Counsel to the Governor