New Help for Child Care Center Permitting in NJ

NJDEP LogoThe NJDEP announced today the launch of an updated website for child care and educational facilities to clear up confusion on the environmental compliance requirements for sites subject to the “Madden Legislation”  P.L. 2007, Chapter 1. The site provides useful links and guidance to assist you with navigating through this multi-agency regulatory process.

In our experience, REPSG recommends that a new applicant allow up to three (3) months to address the environmental compliance steps. The first step is to hire a licensed site remediation professional (LSRP) to prepare a Preliminary Assessment Report (PAR). If a prior Phase I Environmental Site Assessment is available this is helpful, but it does not replace the PAR. The LSRP will review the site history and identify potential on-site and off-site sources of contamination and advise you through the next steps in the process. The selection of a qualified LSRP with specific child care permitting experience is vital to the success of the project.

If you are about to embark on your child care center new application, three year renewal or are constructing an educational facility please contact me at cdrake@repsg.com so that I can assist you with your process. Grants are available through the HSDRF. Ask me how!

NJ Annual Fees in the Simplest Terms

NJDEP LogoThe New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) has replaced the past “hour-by-hour” oversight billing with a Site Remediation LSRP Annual Fee. This offers some advantages in terms of project budget planning, since the fees are fixed and predictable after you wade through confusing nuances. Your  Licensed Site Remediation Professional (LSRP) will guide you. If you have not retained a LSRP for your existing case, you need one.

The Way This Works
Your LSRP calculates your project’s annual fees for you and submits this information to the NJDEP in an Annual Fee Form. The cost of the fee is based on the number of contaminated areas of concern that have not been fully remediated as defined in N.J.A.C. 7:26E “NJ Tech Rule” last amended May 2012.

The annual fees must continue to be paid until all areas of concern have received a Response Action Outcome (similar to a No Further Action). Deadlines and other details regarding the fees are found in the Administrative Requirements for Remediation of Contaminated Sites Rule “ARRCS Rule”. The fee breakdown is as follows:

  • 0-1 Contaminated Areas of Concern $450.00
  • 2-10 Contaminated Areas of Concern $900.00
  • 11-20 Contaminated Areas of Concern $5,000.00
  • >20 Contaminated Areas of Concern $9,500.00

In addition to these amounts there are additional “contaminated media” fees of $1,400 (each) assessed if groundwater, sediment or surface water is impacted.  The Department estimates that most sites fall in Category 2. If no Annual Fee Form has been submitted, you will probably get a Site Remediation LSRP Annual Fee invoice for $900.00. Special considerations for underground storage tank sites apply, consult your LSRP.

This is not the sum total of your NJDEP fees, however. You are still responsible for past due oversight fees, fees related to remediation permits, and NJDEP direct oversight fees, if applicable. A handy link to check your project for past due fees is found here: Financial Obligation Summary Report. If your project’s closure strategy involves use of an engineering control (like a cap) or institutional control (like a Classification Exception Area (CEA)) you will continue to have ongoing fees.

Proper calculation and timely payment of fees is based on a good Preliminary Site Assessment and Site Investigation. If you receive a  Site Remediation LSRP Annual Fee  invoice from the NJDEP, forward it to your LSRP for review prior to paying it and don’t ignore notices. The NJDEP has the ability to assess fines and fees for non-compliance. Please feel free to contact me at cdrake@repsg.com with LSRP questions or leave a comment below.