News Articles

(In order articles are posted. Latest update: July 6, 2019)

Scotch Plains Mayor Al Smith Joins Assemblyman Jon Bramnick in Calls for Summer Sessions
Jun 25, 2019 – Insider NJ – “I strongly agree with Assembly Minority Leader Jon Bramnick’s statement this morning that the State Legislature should stay in session throughout the summer to address court imposed high-density housing and caps on state spending. Instead of breaking for the summer as usual, the Governor and State Legislature should get to work on reforming our broken affordable housing process and fixing our structural budget problems…”

NJ could create hard requirement for affordable housing units
Jun 24, 2019 – NJ 101.5 – No matter where it may be in New Jersey, a new housing project with 30 or more units must have at least 25 percent of those units set aside for low-to-middle income earners to afford, under a proposed law that’s taken its first step forward in the state Legislature…

Affordable Housing Dilemma: Debate, Deals Go On
Jun 18, 2019 – thepressgroup.com – Two opposing forces in the statewide debate over affordable housing obligations—Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi
(R-39) and Fair Share Housing Center attorney Kevin Walsh—went head to head with three other panelists in a livestreamed debate May 31 on how best to fulfill affordable housing obligations…

Sweeping changes to NJ’s rules on Affordable Housing proposed
Jun 18, 2019 – NJ Spotlight – Housing advocates cheer controversial bill as
builders decry proposed new requirements for high-density developments and question constitutionality. New Jersey would impose, for the first time, a
requirement that a quarter of units in many proposed high-density
developments be affordable…

North Haledon developments will improve ‘blighted’ Belmont Avenue, mayor says
Jun 17, 2019 – northjersey.com – Two housing projects, recently approved to be built on Belmont Avenue, will enhance a section of the borough cluttered with industrial uses, the mayor said. The projects, which will bring a total of 230 units to vacant land at 920 Belmont Ave. and 987 Belmont Ave., were foreseen in a redevelopment plan that has guided officials in their quest to spur construction between Overlook Avenue and Vine Street…

Lakewood Route 70 flea market likely to close, 332 townhouses OK’d at site
Jun 17, 2019 – app.com – …Earlier this month environmental regulators
announced they intend to issue a permit for construction at the site of Route 70 Auction & Flea Market, ending a nearly four-year holdup prompted by concerns the township water supply couldn’t support development there…

Big Changes Coming to Meadowlands Parkway
Jun 14, 2019 – eSecaucus – The Jersey Journal wrote yesterday that Hartz
Mountain will be moving its HQ to Meadowlands Parkway, which may also soon see a new hotel, convenience store and gas station…

Oninion: Your Town is Under Assault by the NJ courts
Jun 10. 2019 – NJ101.5 – The courts in NJ have been ruling against local towns as municipal leaders struggle to stop over-development. In some towns, developers are taking advantage of affordable housing rules and forcing thousands of new units into towns, which simply lack the infrastructure to handle. Infrastructure regarding power, water, school, roads and traffic are among the top concerns along with a likely spike in taxes…

Application for 750 Walnut Avenue Denied by Planning Board
Jun 6, 2019 – TAPintoCranford – 14 meetings and over a year worth of time.
Verdict? A unanimous No. The Cranford Planning Board was tasked with
deliberating whether or not the C-3 property located at 750 Walnut Avenue
falls into the definition of inutility as Hartz Mountain claims and if the
rezoning would substantially and meaningfully benefit the Township and
further the purposes of the municipal land use law…

Sweeney-Smith Bill Would Provide Affordable Housing for First Responders
June 3, 2019 – InsiderNJ – A Senate committee today approved legislation
sponsored by Senate President Steve Sweeney and Senator Bob Smith that
would permit municipalities to establish an affordable housing preference
for first responders…

Trial Date Set As Talks Continue: Park Ridge Negotiating Affordable Housing Plan
May 31, 2019 – Pascack Press – A Superior Court judge has set a September
trial date for Park Ridge to take on its two most powerful intervenors in a
long-contested settlement of its affordable housing obligations…

Did your town pay off Fair Share Housing Center’s lawyers to “settle” affordable housing Threats?
May 28, 2019 – exMayor.com – [Blog] Before it agrees to end its affordable housing litigation against a town, the Fair Share Housing Center‘s lawyers demand cash payments — ranging up to $100,000…

Roselle Park gives initial OK to PILOT
May 31, 2019 – Union News Daily – A proposed mixed-use development for a
long-abandoned car dealership on Westfield Avenue would receive a 20-year
tax abatement under a proposal introduced by the Borough Council at its May
16 meeting. The council voted 5-1 to introduce the payment in lieu of
taxes, or PILOT…

OPINION: The affordable-housing scam: Crony capitalism has found a home in New Jersey | Mulshine
Apr 25, 2019 – NJ.com – …In New Jersey we get the sort of thing that’s going on in Edison at the moment. A developer there is building a 220-unit complex called Camelot of Edison. In keeping with that name, 187 of the units can be rented or sold at market rate, which will be a princely sum indeed. Only 33 will be marketed as affordable units…

Cranford residents denounce 750 Walnut proposal
May 26, 2019 – Union News Daily – Nearly two dozen residents expressed their frustration with a proposed 905-unit apartment complex at 750 Walnut Ave. at the May 15 Planning Board meeting, saying that it will increase traffic and overwhelm the school district…

Village Center Complex Could Bring 420 ‘Affordable’ Units to West Windsor
May 23, 2019 – Jersey Digs – …despite the largely suburban landscape of West Windsor today, there are still several tracts in the township that remain undeveloped. Now, under a developer’s proposal, one of those properties could become home to hundreds of residents…

Scotch Plains Affordable Housing Advisory Committee Endorses Reform Legislation
May 21, 2019 – Insider NJ – The Affordable Housing Advisory Committee supports providing affordable housing in New Jersey for low income families, seniors, millennials, veterans, those with special needs as well as other groups. However, the current manner in which affordable housing is determined fails to consider how local communities may be affected by the construction of thousands of new units…

Developer ‘cut corners,’ and residents ended up breathing in asbestos, councilman says
May 20, 2019 – NJ.com – Construction workers are busy in downtown Linden, building new apartment towers that many residents have praised as an effort to breathe fresh life and economic development into the Union County city.
But, a local official and some residents are crying foul on the project’s developer, saying the company irresponsibly unleashed asbestos — a toxic mineral that has been linked to lung disease — into the air when demolishing the buildings that previously stood on its lots…

Afterglow Group Sues To Reverse Spectrum 360 Settlement
May 20, 2019 – myVeronaNJ.com – First Ridge Alliance, a group of residents in the Afterglow neighborhood of Verona, has filed a suit to reverse the Town Council’s May 15 settlement with Spectrum 360. The suit was filed by Anne Studholme, a Roseland-based lawyer who specializes in affordable housing and who addressed the Council during its meeting last Wednesday. Studholme said then that if the Council approved the plan, she would file suit…

Town Settles, Reluctantly, Over Development Project
May 19, 2019 – myVeronaNJ.com – The Verona Town Council held a special meeting on Wednesday that ended, just before midnight, with four of the five Council members reluctantly agreeing to a settlement on a large development project at Sunset and Bloomfield avenues and one, Councilman Jack McEvoy, voting No. The decision was an attempt to forestall more onerous development elsewhere in Verona, but it will likely face challenges before any shovels go in the ground…

Planner decries ‘negative impact’ of 750 Walnut
May 18, 2019 – Union News Daily – A proposed 905-unit apartment complex at 750 Walnut Walnut Ave. would have a negative fiscal impact on the township and schools, a professional planner hired by the local Planning Board said at the board’s May 8 special meeting…

Affordable Housing Front And Center For Moorestown Council
May 19, 2019 – Moorestown Patch – Moorestown Council will consider five proposed ordinances related to affordable housing when it meets Monday night…Two proposals will have a public hearing and are up for a final vote. The first proposal calls for a 100 percent senior affordable housing complex…

A Message From Mayor Jasionowski
May 17, 2019 – RiverValenj.org – River Vale: “I want to share a very frustrating position River Vale is presently facing with the State COAH mandates. I have been meeting and arguing with all involved in this issue nonstop over the past few weeks and months. We have been negotiating and fighting for years to keep development to a minimum and preserve River Vale. I personally believe we have a moral obligation to build affordable housing, but in a way that fits our Township…”

Judge To Rule On River Vale Affordable Housing Settlement Fairness
March 18, 2019 – Pascack Press – Superior Court Judge Christine A. Farrington is expected to rule after 9 a.m. on March 18 whether River Vale’s affordable housing plan through 2025 satisfies statewide affordable housing mandates…

Final Public Comment for 750 Walnut Avenue Redevelopment Application Tonight at 8 p.m.
May 15, 2019 – TAPintoCranford – Wednesday night will be the public’s final chance to voice their opinion on the application to rezone 750 Walnut Avenue residential.  Following public comment, Hartz Mountain will get one final chance of their own to speak on the application. A final decision on the future of the property is expected to be resolved by the June 5th Planning Board meeting…

NJ jobs: College grads find rich job market, but can they afford to live on their own?
May 13, 2019 – northjersey.com – With the economy booming and the demand intense for accounting students, Tiffany Monte had little trouble finding a full-time job. But her first steps into the real world for the soon-to-be graduate from Georgian Court University in Lakewood will feel awfully familiar. She’s going to live back home with her parents in Jackson…

N.J. has an affordable housing issue. Federal tax credits will bring 1,200
units.
May 10, 2019 – NJ.com – In a state where a judge ruled last year that 155,000 affordable housing units were needed, that number will be reduced by a tiny sliver after the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency announced they will award $24 million in federal housing tax credits across the state…

Springfield Township Committee Unanimously Approves Former Saks Property Redevelopment Plan
May 9, 2019 – TAP into Berkeley Heights – …The five-member [Township] committee voted unanimously on Tuesday in favor of a proposed plan to build a four-story apartment complex that will include 223 residential apartment units and 47 townhomes on the nine-acre lot on Millburn Ave…

Demolition begins on Paterson Armory to make way for luxury apartments
Apr 23, 2019 – MSN.com – Paterson officials are hoping that the 138-unit, $15 million luxury apartment complex planned for the Market Street site someday will represent the city’s revival…
[Note: Paterson is exempt from Affordable Housing requirement]

N.J. town is getting so big, its school district says it’ll sue to stop ‘overcrowding crisis’
Apr 23, 2019 – NJ.com – There’s been so much development in Edison, the board of education says it’s planning to sue the township for what it’s called an “overcrowding crisis” in local schools…

Cranford development deemed inconsistent
Apr 13, 2019 – Union News Daily – A professional planner hired by the local Planning Board testified that a proposed 905-unit apartment complex at 750 Walnut Ave. would be inconsistent with the township’s master plan…

Council Ponders what Actions to Take to Alert the State Representatives of the Negative Impact of the Affordable Housing Mandate
Mar 27, 2019 – TAP into New Providence – The [New Providence] Borough Council discussed what actions the borough should take in order to express its concern regarding the affordable housing mandate at the Monday, March 25 meeting. Councilman Robert Robinson pondered whether the council should pen a resolution to Trenton in order to let the legislators to know what consequences the borough could face as a result of the court ruling regarding the high density housing mandate…

Lawmaker predicts Mount Laurel could crash real estate
Mar 16, 2019 – Union News Daily – A northern New Jersey lawmaker [Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi District 39] told local residents that leaving the fate of Mount Laurel, or “affordable,” housing in the hands of the court system could “crash the entire real estate market of the state of New Jersey.”…

Application for Wawa on Cranford/Roselle Park Border Approved
Mar 14, 2019 – TAPintoCranford – Third time was the charm as the Zoning board approved a site plan application that allows WaWa to come to North Avenue East by the Garden State Parkway where Horan Lumber was located…

Cranford Experts Express Opinions on 750 Walnut
Mar 14, 2019 – Westfield Leader – James Brunette, a licensed real estate  broker, and Maurice Rasched, licensed as a professional engineer, with a specialty in traffic engineering, provided their opinions on 750 Walnut Avenue at the planning board hearing last Wednesday. This 30-acre tract of land is owned by Hartz Mountain Industries, which is seeking to rezone the property for residential use in order to erect 905 apartments…

Cranford school board demographer predicts 99 students from Birchwood
Mar 14, 2019 – Union News Daily – A demographer hired by the Board of Education estimates 99 students will be added to the school district when the Birchwood apartment complex is fully occupied. The question Township Committee members have begun to focus on is how much of the payment in lieu of taxes, or PILOT, agreement the town struck with developers last year will be allocated to the board to offset the impact of those 99 students…

Quality of life in New Jersey is at a three-decade low. Here’s what residents griped about in yearly poll
Feb 26, 2019 – NJ.com – Quality of life in the Garden State has hit a three decade low, according to an annual poll released Monday by Monmouth University…

Real Estate Expert Suggests Alternatives for 750 Walnut Avenue
Mar 8, 2019 – TAPintoCranford – At the Wednesday, March 6 Planning Board meeting, real estate broker James Brunette was brought in on behalf of the [Planning] Board to testify his assessment of the property and market.  While he said that the commercial office market is “improving,” the industrial market is “on fire.”…

Townhouse development raises concerns over runoff into Bergen reservoir system
Mar 8, 2019 – northjersey.com – A proposed townhouse development along a portion of the Hackensack River that leads to the Oradell Reservoir is drawing concerns from environmentalists who worry that it will increase runoff into a water source for 800,000 people…

‘We will collapse the entire housing market’: Lawmakers call for halt of affordable housing process
Mar 7, 2019 – NJ.com – A Republican state lawmaker issued a dire warning about leaving affordable housing decisions in the hands of the courts: “We will collapse the entire housing market in the state of New Jersey.” State Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi, R-Bergen, who is leading the charge against the current affordable housing obligation process, called on the New Jersey Legislature to pass a moratorium on any new decisions and give the power back to lawmakers…

Assemblyman Bramnick Holds Town Hall Meeting on Affordable Housing at Union County College
Mar 6, 2019 – TAPintoCranford – Residents concerned about affordable housing mandates being imposed by the courts had a chance to share their thoughts with Assemblyman Jon Bramnick and Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi. Bramnick, the Republican representative from the 21st district and Schepisi, the Republican representative from the 39th district, held a town hall meeting at the Roy Smith Theater at Union County College on Tuesday night…

Interview with Assemblyman Jon Bramnick before his Town Hall Meeting on Affordable Housing, held in Cranford on March 5, 2019 (audio).
Mar 5, 2019 – Cranford Radio – Bernie Wagenblast

Afford.-Housing Issue Topic For Young Republicans
Feb 28, 2019 – Westfield Leader – Scotch Plains Mayor Alexander Smith told a meeting of the Union County Young Republicans last Wednesday night that state legislators are “not interested” in addressing the affordable-housing numbers that courts throughout the state have imposed on towns. “The state is broken,” he said…

Editorial: State Legislators Need to Address Affordable-Housing Issues
Feb 28, 2019 – Westfield Leader – The wide-ranging and complex issues surrounding affordable housing in New Jersey remained in the spotlight locally last week, as elected municipal officials discussed petitioning state
legislators to address current mandates regarding towns’ affordable-housing obligations…

Stop Quarry Group Urges Members to Attend Subdivision Hearing Next Wednesday
Feb 28, 2019 – TAP into Basking Ridge – A request to subdivide the Millington Quarry into two pieces is due to be heard before the township Zoning Board of Adjustment next Wednesday, March 6, and the local Stop the Quarry group is urging the public to attend the meeting to learn more…

New Providence Settles Affordable Housing Declaratory Judgment Action; Borough May Add 1209 Residential Units
Feb 28, 2019 – TAP into New Providence – The Borough Council approved the resolution authorizing the borough’s settlement agreement in the affordable housing declaratory judgment action at its Monday, Feb. 25 meeting. The subsequent zoning changes may lead to drastic changes in the borough’s character and drain its resources thin…

Arsenic found in Bergen County brook renews concerns, calls to halt Toll Brothers project
Feb 25, 2019 – northjersey.com – More than a year after it began, muddy runoff from a construction site is still seeping into a once-pristine upper Bergen County brook, raising concerns among some residents and local officials that arsenic from the property is contaminating the waterway…

Feb 23, 2019 – Join Jon Bramnick and call Gov. Murphy at 609-292-6000 and tell him to put an end to court imposed high-density housing like the 750 Walnut Ave. development (video)

Developer predicts $2.8 million tax boost from Cranford project
Feb 10, 2019 – Union News Daily – A 905-unit apartment complex at 750 Walnut Avenue on the Clark border would create about $2.8 million in net tax revenue for the township each year, according to a fiscal impact analysis by the developer…Some board members and residents, however, questioned the numbers…

Twp. Committee Not to Act Until March on Sale of Lot
Feb. 21, 2019 – Westfield Leader – The township committee on Tuesday announced that any decisions about the 83 Myrtle Street municipal property sale will not be made until the March governing body meeting…

Rapid development poses risks for Montclair
Feb 21, 2019 – northjersey.com – Within the next few years, 1,303 new apartments, plus 159 hotel rooms, will have been added along a 1.7-mile stretch of Bloomfield Avenue. “Montclair is a poster child for the way we want our development today,” said James Hughes, dean emeritus of the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers University…

Parsippany OKs tax incentive deal for mixed use, 441- apartment complex
Feb 20, 2019 – Daily Record – Township council approved a tax incentive pilot [Payment in Lieu of Taxes] for a proposed mixed use retail and a 441-apartment residential project to replace two shuttered Route 10 office buildings. The pilot was approved as the council faced the threat of a lawsuit from the builder and the possibility of 800 new apartment units built on the site…

Twp. Seeks New Engineering Team, Zoning Officer
Feb 14, 2019 – The Westfield Leader – Cranford’s zoning officer and the township engineer have both resigned…

Committee Tables Resolution On Sale of Myrtle Parcel
Feb 14, 2019 – The Westfield Leader – Cranford: Mayor Patrick Giblin and the township committee decided to table a resolution authorizing the sale of public land on Myrtle Street at Monday evening’s township committee workshop meeting. Mayor Giblin stated that because Tuesday’s official meeting was cancelled due to adverse weather conditions, the resolution will be reconsidered and discussed at a meeting on Tuesday, February 19…

Why America’s New Apartment Buildings All Look the Same
Feb 13, 2019 – Bloomberg Businessweek – Cheap stick framing has led to a proliferation of blocky, forgettable mid-rises—and more than a few construction fires…there’s a reason why stick wasn’t the default for big apartment buildings until recently, and why these buildings are limited in height: Sticks burn…

Union OKs variances for five-story apartment building
Feb 11, 2019 – Union News Daily – Zoning Board members have approved several variances to advance a proposal that would replace the Garden Buffet restaurant on Morris Avenue with a five-story apartment building and new restaurant at street level…

Eagle Ridge Golf Club development public hearing in Lakewood postponed by judge
Feb 5, 2019 – Asbury Park Press – Toms River – Plans to build hundreds of homes on the site of the Eagle Ridge Golf Club in Lakewood hit a speed bump Tuesday, when a judge ordered a 30-day postponement of a public hearing on the controversial proposal. Superior Court Judge Marlene Lynch Ford granted the injunction just hours before the hearing was scheduled to take place before the township’s Planning Board…

Westfield Business Relocating To Cranford
Feb 5, 2019 – Patch.com – Westfield’s loss is Cranford’s gain, as after 50 years at the corner of Rahway and South Avenue, international law firm Lerner David is moving their business to Cranford. The global intellectual property law firm, is relocating 20 Commerce Drive in Cranford, leasing space in the Cranford business park. Lerner David’s new home at 20 Commerce Drive is a fully-amenitized Class A building with direct access to the Garden State Parkway…

Lakewood: Fairways residents ask judge to stop approval of Eagle Ridge plan
Feb 4, 2019 – Asbury Park Press – A lawyer for residents angered over the proposed development of Eagle Ridge golf course is asking a judge to at least temporarily stop the township planning board from approving the project.  Michele R. Donato, a land use lawyer representing residents of the Fairways at Lake Ridge adult community, argued in a late-Monday request for an injunction that legal issues raised by the Fairways residents should be decided before the planning board takes action…

Flawed Lakewood master plan allows homes at Eagle Ridge, without street improvements
Feb 4, 2019 – Asbury Park Press – It took dozens of hours in contentious public meetings and more than a year for planning officials here to hash out a master plan to guide growth. Acquiescing to residents’ concerns about traffic jams, township officials ultimately made some residential construction contingent upon street improvements coming first. But over the course of just three months, and without public fanfare, that contingency disappeared…

3D maps show parts of NJ are the most densely populated on the planet
Jan 26, 2019 – NJ.com – …The Garden State is home to the top four most densely populated municipalities in the United States, and seven of the top 10. The top four, all in Hudson County, are some of the most densely populated on the planet…

Lakewood: Sierra Club Slams New Development Proposal
Jan 29, 2019 – Ocean County Scanner News – …GDMS Holdings will present plans to build a mix of 1,000 single-family homes, duplexes, and basement apartments, on the former golf course. The development is named “The Parke,” which will include bike paths, parks and open space, multiple community centers, and local retail and amenities…

Public Health Concerns Continue to be Raised Over Arsenic Runoff From Toll Brothers Site in Mahwah, Upper Saddle River and Saddle River
Jan 28, 2019 – The Ridgewood Blog – Mahwah Environmental Commission and its members were apprised over the weekend by Derek Michalski of the situation in USR and ongoing concerns regarding alleged arsenic and lead pollution. Also they were provided with new aerial surveillance video documenting that Toll Brothers is using underground and above ground pumps to dewater “colloidal clay” directly into Pleasant Brook…

Massive $300M real estate project could reshape West Windsor
Jan 21, 2019 – Return on Information New Jersey (ROI) – More than 800 units of housing — rental, for-sale and age-restricted. More than 37,000 square feet of retail surrounding more than 50,000 square feet of an open-space, grassy promenade. A 120-room hotel with a rooftop restaurant. A train station with easy access to the Northeast Corridor…

Developer Presents Plans For Montvale-Section of Sony Site
Jan 21, 2019 – Pascack Press/Northern Valley Press – An engineer and architect for Hornrock Properties’ proposal to construct a four story, 50-feet-tall 185-unit multifamily housing development in Montvale—including 37 affordable housing units— testified Jan. 2 on development details and were questioned about impacts on nearby Park Ridge, as well as local impacts, parking and fire safety…

Battleground Bramnick: Murphy Out of Touch, “Even with His Own Party’
Jan 15, 2019 – InsiderNJ – “Of 169 new laws, there was not one law related to making New Jersey more affordable – not one plan,” said the minority leader [Asm Jon Bamnick]. “This is the number one exit state in the nation. There was
nothing in this state of the state to address this massive exit…

Newark council’s approval of zoning rule brings gentrification fears
Jan 10, 2019 – NJTV News – Residents came out in droves Wednesday, pleading with Newark’s city council not to approve MX-3, a new zoning ordinance they say will change the Ironbound as they know it. It would allow development of high-rise, high-density residential buildings in the East Ward. “The more you add the market rate units to the neighborhood, the more pressure you’re putting on rents outside of the immediate neighborhood right there,” said Ironbound Community Corporation Executive Director Joseph Della Fave….

Report urges governor to be proactive in Pinelands preservation
Jan 9, 2019 – NJTV News – At more than a million acres, the Pinelands occupies most of Southern New Jersey. In 1979, Gov. Brendan Byrne signed the Pinelands Protection Act to preserve hundreds of thousands of acres of forest and streams…The report also criticizes the commission for what it says is the agency’s restricting public access and comment, trying to approve major developments without a Pinelands Commission vote, and failing to act on vast off road vehicle damage…

Stockpiling property isn’t a good enough excuse for towns to take your land, court rules
Jan 8, 2019 – NJ.com – A three-judge panel unanimously overruled a decision that allowed Glassboro to take property from a landowner through the use of eminent domain without designating the specific purpose for the acquisition.
The Institute for Justice, which filed a supporting legal brief in the case, said the ruling “affirms that this means the government must meet real burdens before it forcibly acquires property.”…

Newark council’s approval of zoning rule brings gentrification fears
Jan 10, 2019 – NJTV News – Residents came out in droves Wednesday, pleading with Newark’s city council not to approve MX-3, a new zoning ordinance they say will change the Ironbound as they know it. It would allow development of high-rise, high-density residential buildings in the East Ward. “The more you add the market rate units to the neighborhood, the more pressure you’re putting on rents outside of the immediate neighborhood right there,” said Ironbound Community Corporation Executive Director Joseph Della Fave….

Giblin takes selection to be mayor in stride
Jan 5, 2019 – Union News Daily – Patrick Giblin, who has been chosen to become [Cranford] mayor in 2019 by the members of the Township Committee, is taking the appointment in stride…

Patrick Giblin Sworn in as Cranford Mayor
Jan 3, 2019 – TAPintoCranford – After two years at the helm, Thomas Hannen Jr. has stepped aside and Giblin was sworn in at Wednesday’s Reorganization Meeting. Mayors in Cranford are not directly elected by the voters but chosen from among the committee members. Though no longer mayor, Hannen will remain on the Township Committee as a Commissioner and Ann Dooley will remain as Deputy Mayor…

Buh-Bye! More Residents Left New Jersey Than Any Other State In 2018, Study Says
Jan 2, 2019 – Hackensack Daily Voice – A new study found that more residents left New Jersey than any other U.S. state in 2018. United Van Lines, a St. Louis-based moving company, found that 66.8 percent of New Jersey moves were outbound…

Mayor Delivers ‘State of Township Address’ at Clark Municipal Government 2019 Reorganization Meeting
Jan 2, 2019 – TAPintoClark – … [Mayor Sal Bonaccorso] thanked the volunteers that work on the Clark Planning Board for their endless hours and dedication this year especially in light of the affordable housing plan that he described as a situation where “we held our noses and voted and signed the agreement with affordable housing, ultimately we had to continue to protect Clark.”…

Nearly 250 Housing Units Proposed For River Vale Golf Course
Dec 18, 2018 – Pascack Valley Daily Voice – If approved by the Joint Planning Board Thursday, the 27-hole golf course would be reduced to 18 holes — 24 of which would fulfill River Vale’s affordable-housing requirement by the state. The remaining 225 units would be 193, three-bedroom townhouses and 32, two- and three-bedroom quadplex units…

Cranford suggests number for Mount Laurel housing units
Nov 29, 2018 – Union News Daily – The township has submitted a plan in Superior Court to satisfy its Mount Laurel housing obligation just weeks before its immunity from “ builder’s remedy” lawsuits was set to expire…The township proposes to zone for 85 “affordable housing” units throughout its 5 square miles to meet its third-round housing obligation under the so-called Mount Laurel Doctrine established by the New Jersey Supreme Court more than four decades ago…

370-Unit Mixed Use Project Underway In Garwood
Dec 17, 2018 – Patch Springfield – Construction is beginning on the new Vermella at Garwood Station, a mixed-use project with about 370 apartments and 19,000 square feet of retail space at the intersection of South Avenue and Center Street in downtown Garwood…

Springfield gives final approval for downtown project PILOT
Dec 16, 2018 – Union News Daily – The Township Committee unanimously approved a 30-year tax abatement for a redevelopment project on Morris Avenue at its Nov. 27 meeting, agreeing to the first payment in lieu of taxes for
the downtown area. The property is to house 24 residential apartments above retail space at 226 Morris Ave…

Hartz Mtn. Provides EIS For Proposed Development
Dec 13, 2018 – Westfield Leader – Cranford: Engineer for Hartz Mountain Industries LLC, Jeffrey Martell of Stonefield Engineering, presented an
Environmental Impact Study (EIS) of 750 Walnut Avenue, dated November 28, to the planning board Wednesday. Hartz is seeking to construct a 900-unit
development at the site. Planning board member Dan Aschenbach and residents questioned why a study for contaminated soil was not performed in the EIS, given that the site was home to a variety of manufacturing and industrial companies…

Welcome to the New York housing slump
Dec 14, 2018 – The Real Deal New York – The long-awaited slump in New York’s housing market has arrived. Home prices are heading down in the city itself and in its suburbs, according to Bloomberg. Buyers are pulling back thanks to years of price increases, the new federal cap on state and local property tax deductions and an increase in mortgage rates…

North Bergen voters say ‘yes’ to $60 million bond for schools realignment plan
Dec 12, 2018 – NJ.com – North Bergen’s voters Tuesday night overwhelmingly approved borrowing $60 million for a plan that officials say will alleviate  chronic overcrowding in the school district…In his promise to keep school taxes from rising, Sacco has said that $1.25 million annually from the township’s PILOT program — payments made by developers of tax-abated properties — will be used to repay the $34 million loan..

NJ Supreme Court OKs controversial housing development in protected Highlands
Dec 13, 2018 – northjersey.com – The state Supreme Court on Thursday morning ruled that a controversial townhouse development slated for an Oakland ridge can be built despite environmental protections that were enacted to protect such land in the New Jersey Highlands…

Newark Vs. Gentrification: We Can’t Become Brooklyn, Mayor Says
Dec 6, 2018 – Patch Newark – Find out what Newark city officials are doing to make sure the development boom is helping ALL residents, not just those with deep pockets. On Thursday, Newark officials – including [Mayor] Baraka – held a press conference to announce that the city is digging in its heels against the effects of housing “gentrification” on its low-income residents…

Affordable Housing Plan Calls for 205 Units at 750 Walnut Avenue
Dec 7, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – The Cranford Housing Plan Element and Fair Share Plan released Monday morning projects Hartz Mountain Industries’ development at 750 Walnut Avenue to have a density of 10 units per acre (20.5 acres), yielding 205 units, 41 of which will be affordable units…

Did Hartz Mountain Make a True Attempt to Keep Walnut Avenue Commercial?
Nov 29, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – At Wednesday night’s Planning Board Meeting, Mr. Charles Reese of Hartz Mountain testified that he made every attempt to lease 750 Walnut Avenue as commercial, and still continues to do so…

Demolition Under Way to Make Room For New Apartments in Clark
Nov 29, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – Demolition has begun on the buildings on the corner of Valley Road and Walnut Avenue to make way for a new residential apartment complex. The project is tentatively scheduled to be completed in 2019 according to Clark Business Administrator John Laezza and will include 177 apartments…

MDC, Bukiet sell Clark office building for $10.5
Nov 12, 2018 – Real Estate NJ – A joint venture has sold an office building in Clark after three years of ownership, fetching more than $10.5 million for the recently upgraded, 76,000-square-foot property…A private investor acquired the 97 percent occupied, multitenant property for $10.525 million…“Strong demand for office space in proximity to transit and with upgraded amenities are driving more real estate investors to acquire properties in suburban locales,”…

NKF: Office upgrades yielding quantifiable benefits in occupancy, rent growth in New Jersey
Nov 29, 2018 – Real Estate NJ – Landlords that have renovated and refreshed New Jersey’s aging office stock can now point to the benefits, with a new report showing significantly stronger absorption and rent growth at upgraded buildings…

Red Bank: Higher VNA Site Density Urged
Nov 29, 2018 – Red Bank Green – The Red Bank council took steps Wednesday to allow as many as 90 housing units per acre on a key redevelopment site. But the proposed rezoning of the former Visiting Nurse Association headquarters site would negate a compromise recommendation made by the planning board just last week…

NJ ranks No. 1 for millennials still living with their parents
Nov 29, 2018 – News12 New Jersey – It seems that more millennials are still living with their parents after graduating college, according to a report by the United States Census Bureau. The report found that 47 percent of adults ages 18 to 34 are still living at home in New Jersey, the highest percentage in the nation…

Cranford Residents Continue Development Fight Wednesday
Nov 27, 2018 – Patch Cranford – Planning Board meeting Wednesday is the next battle to stop more than 900 apartment units from being built…

Redevelopment Plan At Old Lambertville High School Site Presented At Special City Council Meeting
Nov 27, 2018 – New Hope Free Press – …City Planner Emily Goldman presented the Lambertville High School Redevelopment Plan, (not to be confused with the South Hunterdon Regional School District) which was prepared by Clarke Caton Hintz, and detailed drafts for the construction of new housing units to meet the city’s fair share housing obligations that stem from a 2015 NJ Supreme Court ruling…

West New York neighbors vow to fight proposed 15-story development
Nov 24, 2018 – NJ.com – The West New York Planning Board will consider a resolution on Monday that would review the town’s master plan, a move some residents say is aimed at green-lighting a massive apartment tower in one of the county’s most densely populated towns…

Berkeley Heights Asked to Provide Wastewater Treatment for 192-home Development in Warren
Nov 21, 2018 – TAPinto Berkeley Heights – Warren is only asking Berkeley Heights to provide sewage treatment for one property, the one which was proposed as a site for the Berkeley Aquatic Club (BAC), in 2012. Under the settlement, the developer, K-Hovanian, “K.Hov,” will be permitted to build a 192-unit housing development with 144 market-rate town homes and 48 affordable units on that property…

Mayor Provides More Information On Schooley’s Mountain Project
Nov 20, 2018 – Patch Long Valley – Mayor Bill Roehrich clarified several points about the proposed Schooley’s Mountain redevelopment project following a town committee meeting this week…

Who can solve New Jersey’s affordable housing conundrum?
Nov 15, 2018 – NJSpotlight – Gov. Murphy hasn’t made affordable housing a priority, but he’s giving the closing keynote at the League of Municipalities annual conference, and local leaders — among others — are looking for guidance…

Irish pub owner seeks Cranford zoning board’s help
Nov 11, 2018 – Union News Daily – The owner of a popular Irish pub that was set to switch locations as part of a mixed-use project has sent a letter to the local Zoning Board of Adjustment saying the restaurant is staying put. Barry O’Donovan, who opened Kilkenny House 10 years ago, said it will stay at its South Avenue location, according to an Oct. 15 letter addressed to the board…

Cranford Named Best Downtown in NJ
Nov 10, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – After weeks of voting, Cranford has won the NJ.com Best Downtown in NJ. Cranford was named a top 5 finalist along with Westfield, Cape May,  Morristown, and Somerville before winning the final  round with 30% of the vote…

Clark Will be Home of L’Oréal’s New Research and Development Center
Nov 14, 2018 – TAPintoWestfield – L’Oréal plans to build a new Research and Development facility on Terminal Avenue according to Clark Business Administrator John Laezza…

NJ developer accused of operating loan scheme at bank he founded denies fraud charges
Nov 13, 2018 – NJ.com – A prominent “Gold Coast” developer accused of using a bank he founded to fraudulently obtain millions of dollars in loans pleaded not guilty Tuesday…A separate lawsuit filed by a developer against Edgewater last December doesn’t name Daibes as a defendant, but accuses him and the town of colluding to block the developer’s plans to erect residential buildings on the last large, undeveloped space on the waterfront…

Traffic Impacts from 905 Apts. Questioned By Residents,  Board
Oct 25, 2018 – Westfield Leader – In response to testimony heard last month at the planning board hearing for the rezoning application of 750 Walnut Avenue … questions were posed by residents and the board last Wednesday at the board’s hearing to try to make sense of the projections…

Mayors Smith, Hannen, and Mahr Meet to Discuss Affordable Housing Legislative Reforms
Oct. 23, 2018 – InsiderNJ.com – Scotch Plains Mayor Al Smith and Cranford Mayor Tom Hannen met with Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr, the incoming president of the New Jersey League of Municipalities, to discuss various legislative solutions to the current court-driven affordable housing process…

‘No one’s home is safe’ if agency can seize man’s house for a fantasy project, group says
Oct. 23, 2018 – NJ.com – A man who is looking to protect his house from being claimed by eminent domain is about to fight his case in an appeals court hearing in Jersey City Wednesday…

N.J. rejects key permit in controversial 4,000-unit Pinelands housing project
Oct 22, 2018 – NJ.com – The state Department of Environmental Protection has denied a permit an H. Hovnanian company needed to move ahead with plans to build 4,000 units of housing on the site of a former sand quarry in the
Pinelands…

High-rises in one section of Newark struck down — at least for now
Oct 14, 2018 – NJ.com – A judge on Friday knocked down a new, controversial Newark rule that allowed much taller buildings in a largely residential section of the city — effectively halting a 12-story building planned for the Ironbound…

Editorial: Suburbia is in decline. How these towns are fighting back.
Oct 5, 2018 – NJ.com – That’s the gloomy forecast for the future of New Jersey’s suburbia as the state’s residents abandon the suburbs and respond to the lure of the Big City … It’s one forecast, anyway. We’re not quite ready to write the definitive obituary for the Garden State’s suburbs…

Jersey City celebrates completion of affordable housing building in Greenville
Aug 23, 2018 – NJ.Com – After investments and developments in the city’s Downtown area and more recently Journal Square, the real estate spotlight shifted, at least momentarily, to a community that residents here believe has
been long neglected…

Warren Township Discusses Potential Affordable Housing Settlement, and the Number is…?
Oct 3, 2018 – TAPintoWarren – Discussion of Warren Township’s state imposed obligation to build affordable housing invokes lyrics from a popular song, “ They paved Paradise to put up a parking lot.” While not a parking lot, the number of new homes to be built according to a settlement agreement Warren Township is negotiating with FSHC…

Harding Township Notice of Fairness Hearing for the Township
Sept 27, 2018 – New Jersey Hills Media Group – ..on November 2, 2018, beginning at 1:30 P.M., there will be a Fairness Hearing (“Hearing”) before the Honorable Maryann L. Nergaard, J.S.C., regarding the settlement of In the Matter of the Township of Harding for a Judgment of Compliance of Its Third Round Housing Element and Fair Share Plan..

Brick Council to Consider Plan to Zone for Retail, Apartment Development on 3 Major Roadways
Sept 25, 2018 – Brick Shorebeat – Brick Township council members are expected to vote on whether to introduce an ambitious plan that could lead to the redevelopment of several areas of land on three major township
thoroughfares…

These Sites No Longer Make Goods. Now They’ll Get Them to You Faster.
Sept 18, 2018 – NY Times – As the United States economy continues its shift away from manufacturing, locations that once housed industries such as automobiles or chemicals are being remade as distribution hubs for the millions of items bought by consumers online…

Public Hearing Monday Will Address Affordable Housing Regulations in Cedar Grove
Sept 14, 2018 – TAPinto.net – A public hearing will be held on Monday at 7 p.m. at Town Hall to discuss two pending ordinances that will address multi-family housing in Cedar Grove, as well as the township’s currently unmet affordable
housing obligations…

NJ Senate Committee Approves Foreclosure Legislation
Sept 17, 2018 – HCDNNJ.org – The New Jersey Senate Economic  Growth Committee today voted in favor of legislation that would create the “NJ Foreclosure Transformation Program” for the purpose of purchasing foreclosed residential properties from institutional lenders and dedicating them for occupancy as affordable homes…

Hartz Mountain Witness Says Traffic Will “Roughly Stay the Same”
Sept 15, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – At Wednesday’s Planning Board meeting, Hartz Mountain brought in two witnesses to testify, which included an industrial engineer and a traffic engineer…

Baby boomers are struggling to downsize and it could create the next housing crisis
Sept 10, 2018 – Bankrate – They recently sold their large family home in San Gabriel, California, for $850,000 and walked away with $250,000 in net proceeds to put toward a smaller home in Los Angeles to be closer to their son’s family. They figured it would be easy to find a quaint, two-bedroom home where they could age in place without overspending on housing. They thought wrong…

Hartz Mountain Planner Speaks On Master Plan, Density and Amenities in Cranford
Sept 6, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – On Wednesday, James Rhatican, Vice President of Land Use and Development at Hartz Mountain, along with professional planner Keenan Hughes, presented to the Planning Board on behalf of Hartz Mountain’s application for 750 Walnut…

Children’s Safety Important In Overdevelopment Plan Before Zoning Board [Letter to the Editor]
Sept 3, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – [Dan Aschenbach] Dear Ronald Marotta and Cranford Zoning Board: I have had the opportunity to observe for many years the neighborhood around the Calvary Lutheran Church. The school there has
many children entering and exiting the school; parking is now constrained; public safety needs to be taken seriously…

Hazlet dumps plan to build affordable housing on 200-year-old farm, former school
Aug 28, 2018 – app.com – Hazlet: Responding to widespread pushback from township residents, Hazlet’s mayor has pulled an affordable housing compliance plan off the table. The plan called for development of a 26-acre, 200-year-old vegetable farm and the 17-acre site of the former Holy Family elementary school into housing…

Apartment building with 124 units slated for Garwood Paperboard site
Aug 24, 2018 – Union News Daily – A developer has unveiled preliminary plans to turn the largely dormant Garwood Paperboard industrial site on North Avenue into a 124-unit apartment complex, the second major multiunit housing project for the borough of 4,200 people in less than three years…

Apartment building with 124 units slated for Garwood Paperboard site
Aug 24, 2018 – Union News Daily – A developer has unveiled preliminary plans to turn the largely dormant Garwood Paperboard industrial site on North Avenue into a 124-unit apartment complex, the second major multiunit housing project for the borough of 4,200 people in less than three years…

Plenty of Housing to Be Built, But Who Will Live There?
Aug 23, 2018 – Westfield Leader – they will come,” a play  on the famous line from the movie Field of Dreams, has been applied to more than just baseball over the years, but will it apply when it comes to the thousands of housing units slated to be built as towns start to grapple with court-imposed affordable-housing obligations? Mayor Alexander Smith, for one, seems skeptical…

Planning Board Recommends Paperboard Redevelop. Plan
Aug 23, 2018 – Westfield Leader – Garwood:  The planning board recommended the Garwood Paperboard (75 North Avenue) redevelopment
plan at its August 8 meeting … Of the 124 units, 18 will be marketed as affordable units per the “inclusionary housing component,” Mr. Mistretta said…

Cranford and Garwood Leaders Must Confer On Development Issues (Opinion)
Aug 23, 2018 – Westfield Leader – After reading the cover story in last week’s paper “Cranford Forms Subcom. On Garwood Housing Project,” I immediately picked up the phone and called fellow elected official Cranford Mayor Tom Hannen. He answered right away and filled me in on why the subcommittee is being formed and its purpose. ..

Here’s how much you can earn and still qualify as low-income in N.J. (Hint: A lot)
Aug 23, 2018 – NJ.com – It’s getting more expensive to be considered low-income New Jersey. A New Jersey family of four in 2018 has to earn $71,900 a year or less to be considered low-income, according to the Department of
Housing and Urban Development ­— an almost six percent increase from last year. New Jersey has the highest HUD income limits in the nation for a family of four –– tied with Alaska, Massachusetts, Maryland and Connecticut…

NJ Senate Committee Advances Bill to Amend PILOT Process
Jun 19, 2018 – Government & Law Blog – New Jersey lawmakers are currently considering legislation that would increase oversight over local tax abatement agreements. Senate Bill 1701 aims increase transparency regarding payments in lieu of taxes (PILOTs), particularly with respect to how they impact school funding…

Residents want backyard stream tested for arsenic, lead because of construction runoff
Apr 28, 2018 – northjersey.com – UPPER SADDLE RIVER — A developer with a history of polluting rivers and streams has drawn the ire of borough residents after pumping stormwater into Pleasant Brook from a construction site that had widespread arsenic and lead contamination…

Flooding in Brick: Blame bad development, not bad weather Mulshine (Opinion)
Aug 21, 2018 – NJ.com – …But when complexes like Greenbriar were built, the lot sizes were smaller, with less area to absorb rainwater. And before long that part of Brick was subject to some of the worst suburban-sprawl development
in a state notorious for sprawl…

BOE Creates Committee After PILOT & Development Discussion
Aug 20, 2018 – Roselle Park News – At the July 24th Board Of Education (BOE) meeting, members of the school board had a 25 minute discussion on current and future developments and their impact to the school system…

Township Closes on Birchwood Redevelopment Deal
Aug 18, 2018 – TAPintoCranford At Tuesday’s Township Committee Meeting, Mayor Hannen announced that the township closed on the Birchwood redevelopment deal. The developer, Birchwood Developers Associates, LLC, looks to break ground as soon as possible, with the hope of getting footings in the ground before first frost…

Middletown ‘town center’ plan advances after public input denied again
Aug 14, 2018 – app.com – Monday night’s meeting of the township planning board began with residents loudly booing a decision to deny public comment on a proposed 400,000-square-foot retail center and its accompanying 400 residential units and the scene only got more chippy as the night went on. The board voted 5-1 to affirm that the redevelopment plan, which would set an additional layer of zoning rules on the prospective Route 35 mixed-use development, was consistent with the township’s Master Plan…

Two Hartz Mountain Meetings Set For September
Aug 10, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – Hartz Mountain’s application to rezone 750 Walnut Avenue from commercial to residential and build 905 apartment units will continue on September 5th and 12th…

Study predicts 39 percent spike in Cranford student population
Aug 10, 2018 – Union News Daily – The superintendent of schools and the school board president issued a joint statement expressing concern that a proposed 905-unit apartment complex planned at 750 Walnut Ave. would have a “dramatic and substantial impact” on the school district…

Hartz asked for environmental impact study
Aug 9, 2018 – Union News Daily – The planning board was greeted with applause from 125 or so residents at its Aug. 1 meeting when it voted to require a developer seeking to build a 905-unit apartment complex at 750 Walnut Ave. to provide an environmental impact statement.Board members wondered whether the 30.5-acre parcel of land had been impacted by previous tenants, such as J.B. Williams Co., which made Geritol, Sominex, Serutan and others…

Angry residents protest affordable housing plan
Aug 9, 2018 – Two River Times – HAZLET – More than 200 incensed residents packed town hall Tuesday night to protest an affordable housing settlement permitting about 480 new total housing units at a former Catholic school and a vacant farm along Route 36. Homeowners battling the plan were so outraged that they shouted at elected officials and pleaded for a better option. One man was even removed by police after an expletive-laden outburst…

Who decides how a city redevelops and why does it matter (Opinion)
Aug 9, 2018 –NJ.com – In many cities today, most of the new housing created is luxury or market rate housing out of reach for most residents. At the same time, working and middle class families struggle to find affordable housing…

The death of N.J.’s suburbs might be a total myth. Even the experts are surprised
Aug 8, 2018 – NJ.com – Want to be on the cutting edge of the hot new trend in housing? It may be time to take a second look at the suburbs…those places with garages and yards once seen as so uncool might be on the rebound as
Millennials begin seeking greener pastures…

Hazlet residents outraged by plan to develop 200-year-old farm, former school
Aug 8, 2018 – app.com – The last working farm in Hazlet is in jeopardy of being developed into housing, and nearly 200 angry residents confronted the township’s committee about it Tuesday. Tensions soared during a four-and-a-half-hour meeting as an overflow crowd debated the fate of Stone Road Meadows, a 26-acre vegetable farm that has been operating since at least 1830…

Montvale mayor says race ‘has nothing to do with’ affordable housing (video)
Aug 8, 2018 – NJTV – Fault lines in New Jersey’s effort to provide affordable housing. At a recent hearing, the mayor of Montvale was among those called out by Fair Share Housing advocates for testifying against court-mandated high density, multifamily developments. Montvale Mayor Mike Ghassali joins Michael Hill…Montvale mayor says race ‘has nothing to do with’ affordable housing…

Are you wasting money on rent? See when it’s worth it to buy a home in your town instead
Jun 23, 2018 – NJ.com – Conventional wisdom says that buying a home saves money in the long run. But how long is “the long run,” exactly? Zillow looked at the cost of renting compared to a home purchase and came back with an answer for New Jersey: 2 years and 4 months, give or take a few weeks…

Shaq will live in the N.J. penthouse of the new 33-story tower he’s building
Aug 8, 2018 – NJ.com – The largest residential project in Newark — towering at 33 stories with 370 units — will soon make its mark on the city’s landscape…The development will have 20 percent affordable units…

Paterson public housing deal sets developer’s fee at $11.3M
Aug 7, 2018 – northjersey.com – The company rebuilding the city’s Riverside Terrace public housing complex stands to collect an $11.3 million developer’s fee, an arrangement that has come under criticism from some local officials…“It’s ridiculous,” Paterson Councilman Michael Jackson said about the financial agreement between the housing authority and Roizman. “The guy has a mask on and the city is getting robbed.”…

These N.J. school districts are hemorrhaging students and it could spell big trouble
Jun 30, 2018 – NJ.com – New Jersey public schools have far fewer students coming into the system than in years past, a trend that, should it continue, could threaten the viability of some rural districts as enrollment plunges…New Jersey’s population growth has stalled in recent years. The state leads the nation in adult children living with their parents as new job seekers struggle to afford the state’s high cost of living…

Westfield Planning Board Okays 30-Unit Apartment Building Near Traffic Circle
Aug 6, 2018 – TAPintoWestfield – The Westfield Planning Board approved an application for a three-story mixed-use development on South Avenue at Westfield Avenue at its meeting Monday night…“Circle Plaza of Westfield,” located near the traffic circle and across the street from the train station, will contain 30 apartments on the upper floors, with retail or commercial use on the first floor…

Transcript and audio of July 25 Assembly Housing and Community Development Committee hearing on affordable housing needs are on the Documents & Videos Page of this website.

The number of vacant properties in every N.J. town, and why they’re costing you big money
Aug 6, 2018 – NJ.com – They’re empty, they’re often in disrepair and they’re a drag on your wallet. Vacant properties can be detrimental to economic growth in an area, adding blight, deterring investment and dragging down the overall feel of a neighborhood…

Bramnick urges the Legislature to act on affordable housing
Aug 3, 2018 – NJTV News – …One prominent Republican lawmaker is calling out his democratic colleagues, saying he wants the control out of the courts and back in the Legislature. Chief Political Correspondent Michael Aron sat down with Assemblyman Jon Bramnick…

Civil Engineer Testifies For Hartz Mountain
Aug 2, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – It was expected that the August 1st Planning Board meeting regarding the Hartz Mountain application for 750 Walnut would see testimony from the civil and traffic engineers. Due to time constraints, only the civil engineer, Jeffrey Martell, presented to the board…

Assembly Housing Committee holds a contentious public hearing
Jul 25, 2018 – NJTV – The 45-year argument over New Jersey affordable housing got a good airing out Wednesday. The fight pits municipalities, that want to protect their character, against builders, who want to build housing, and advocates who want to open up the suburbs to minorities, veterans and the disabled. Mayor after mayor came before the Assembly Housing Committee to complain that housing developers are using the law to try gobble up their towns…

Asm. Bramnick Seeks Change In Affordable-Housing Laws
Jul 19, 2018 – Westfield Leader – Cranford: Assemblyman Jon Bramnick (R-21st, Westfield), Republican Assembly Minority Leader, held a town-hall-style meeting at Kilkenny House July 9 to discuss his ideas on how to change state laws that require municipalities to provide a certain number of affordable-housing units. Mr. Bramnick asserted that he is not against providing affordable housing, but rather he is against the high-density housing that goes along with including affordable housing within a development and the courts being in charge of the determination…

Paperboard Property to Have Maximum of 124 Units
Jul 19, 2018 – Westfield Leader – Garwood: A special townhall-style meeting was held last Thursday allowing borough residents to gather insight and ask questions regarding the Paperboard redevelopment project. “No more than 124 rental units” will be developed at the North Avenue site, stated borough redevelopment attorney William Northgrave. As per a state Superior Court ruling, 15 percent of the 124 units must be listed as “affordable,” stated Mr.
Northgrave…

N.J. needs to build 155,000 affordable housing units. No one can agree on how or where
Jul 27, 2018 – NJ.com – While some say the state is lacking 80,000 affordable housing units and housing advocates say it’s lacking 200,000 units, everyone agrees: New Jersey does not have enough affordable housing. And in an overflowing room at the Statehouse on Wednesday, people from all over New Jersey said just that. How to fix that problem clearly divided the room…

Charges of racism leveled at Assembly Hearing on affordable housing.
Jul 26, 2018 – NJSpotlight – …Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi (R-Bergen) — a vocal critic of the process that has judges overseeing the establishment of housing quotas for municipalities, with Fair Share usually involved — complained that Walsh has refused to consider legislative alternatives. She also charged that he has called her names, including xenophobic. “You’ve been so quick to just try to shut down any conversation, any reasonable conversation, putting forth the most inflammatory language against any member of this body who’s attempting to do their job and that’s wrong,” she
said…

Opinion: Asw Holly Schepisi (District 39): We don’t have the money or the land for court-mandated affordable housing
Jul 25, 2018 – NJ.com – Just like the onslaught of court-mandated overdevelopment under the disguise of affordable housing, the momentum to stop it from burdening our towns is building fast… Now mayors and town councils across the state, Democrat and Republican, are warning that forcing massive high-density projects will overwhelm infrastructure, burden the school system, and greatly increase property taxes. That’s why over 50 towns have passed resolutions calling for a state solution that ends the tyranny of the courts…

Scotch Plains Mayor Al Smith Testifies on Affordable Housing Policies at Trenton Meeting
Jul 27, 2018 – TAPinto Scotch Plains / Fanwood – Written Testimony Before the New Jersey General Assembly Housing and Community Development Hearing on the Affordable Housing Needs of the State on [July 25, 2018] By Alexander M. Smith, Mayor, Scotch Plains…

Cranford gets glimpse of 750 Walnut housing project
Jul 26, 2018 – Union News Daily – A design concept unveiled at the local planning board meeting on Wednesday, July 18, gave residents their first glimpse of the proposed 905-unit apartment project at 750 Walnut Ave. A series of architect’s renderings depicted three, five-story buildings and two, four-story buildings on the 30.5-acre tract…

Boos meet panel that awards developer after-the-fact building approvals
Jul 25, 2018 – NJ.com – Jersey City: To a chorus of boos from residents, the Planning Board on Tuesday approved a host of retroactive approvals for real-estate developer Peter Mocco’s new building on Grand Street, which was constructed using materials banned by the area’s zoning laws and with an additional story not approved by city planners…

Developer is trying to build affordable housing and is suing neighbors to make it happen
Jul 19, 2018 – NJ.com – Lawsuits and counter lawsuits are piling up in Moorestown, Burlington County as neighbors, a developer and the township square off over a proposed 76-unit affordable housing project…Holding up the development, however, is a deed covenant that dates back to 1945. The original landowner of a 60-acre parcel limited the property to one house per half acre and prohibited construction of anything other than a single-family home…

More than 100 new apartments approved for Glen Ridge’s Baldwin Street
Jul 17, 2018 – northjersey.com – The construction of 110 apartments on Glen Ridge’s Baldwin Street is closer to reality. The Borough Council approved the redevelopment plan Monday, calling for at least 47 one-bedroom, no more than 46 two-bedroom, and no three-bedroom units for the 93 market-rate units. The plan also accommodates 17 affordable housing units…

$500M plan to create a new mega mall gets OK from N.J. town
Jul 18, 2018 – NJ.com – Home shopping could take on a whole new meaning under a redevelopment of the Monmouth Mall that will transform it into a mixed-used complex with 700 apartments…

State-Imposed Affordable Housing Requirements Will Lead to Overdevelopment in Scotch Plains
Jul 17, 2018 – TAPintoScotchPlans/Fanwood – Letter to the Editor from Scotch Plains Mayor Al Smith: There will be a public hearing in Trenton concerning the affordable housing process on Wednesday, July 25, 2018 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the State House Annex (131-137 W State St, Trenton, NJ 08608) in Committee Room 16 on the 4th floor…

Affordable Housing Plans Detailed By Woodland Park Mayor
Jul 17, 2018 – TAPintoPassaicValley – Through a Facebook Live Town Hall, Mayor Keith Kazmark on July 16 detailed the Borough’s plans to satisfy the municipality’s affordable housing obligation…

Cranford residents upset with developer’s no-shows
Jul 17, 2018 – Union News Daily – … Cranford Residents Against Overdevelopment has stated in a letter that property owner Hartz Mountain Industries often withdraws from meetings, comparing its actions to the Peanuts comic strip in which Lucy convinces Charlie Brown to kick a football, then pulls it away as he approaches. The group is urging the Cranford Planning Board to confirm the developer will attend the meeting scheduled for Wednesday, July 18…

Can downtowns make a comeback in New Jersey? Here’s what some towns are trying
Jul 12, 2018 – northjersey.com – Are downtowns or town centers making a comeback? Centers or traditional downtown areas in North Jersey such as Morristown and Ridgewood have found that the path to success includes the right balance of retail, dining, entertainment and housing… The formula includes retail and residential with lots of parking…

Report: Hartz’s Apts. Will Hike Student Pop. 39 Percent
Jul 12, 2018 – Westfield Leader – The school system has the potential to see an increase of 39 percent more students should 905 apartments be built at 750 Walnut Avenue, as proposed by Hartz Mountain Industries…Ross and Haber says the Rutgers study that Hartz Mountain Industries professionals have used to project the number of school-aged children who would inhabit the proposed apartments is out of date and invalid…

Bramnick announces rally against state-imposed, high-density housing
Jul 10, 2018 – Ridgewood Blog – Assembly Republican Leader Jon Bramnick (R-Union) announced plans for a rally against state-imposed, high-density housing at a town hall meeting tonight in Cranford. The rally will be held on the steps of the Statehouse Annex on Thursday, September 20 at 10 a.m…

Bramnick urges residents to push back against ‘high-density’ housing
Jul 10, 2018 – NJTV News – “Now the court is micromanaging how many units you have to build in all these communities. That is ridiculous,” said Assembly Minority Leader Jon Bramnick…Bramnick led this Cranford town hall-style strategy session on stopping court-mandated high-density housing…

Warren Township Moves Forward on Affordable Housing Plans, Judge Grants Motion
Jun 12, 2018 – TAPintoWarren – Judge Miller granted Warren Township’s motion for approval on Friday, June 8 of the proposed 100% affordable family rental housing development on Lindbergh Avenue that is to be built by PIRHL Acquisitions, LLC…

Zoning Board Approves Warehouse Facility
Jul 5, 2018 – Westfield Leader – The board of adjustment on June 25 unanimously approved applicant 40-42 Jackson Drive LLC to construct an additional warehouse facility at 40 Jackson Drive…

What you can rent for $1,500 in each of N.J.’s 21 counties
Jul 4, 2018 – NJ.com – Whether you buy a home or are renting, it is expensive to live in New Jersey. In fact, there are only six other states in the country where it is more expensive to rent than in the Garden State…

30-Unit Apartment Building Proposed Near Westfield Traffic Circle
Jul 3, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – The Westfield Planning Board heard a proposal for a three-story mixed-use development on South Avenue at Westfield Avenue at its meeting Monday night. “Circle Plaza of Westfield,” located near the traffic circle and across the street from the train station, would contain 30 apartments on the upper floors, with retail or commercial use on the first floor. It would include 13 two-bedroom units, 16 three-bedroom units and one one-bedroom unit. Five of the units would be “affordable,” with the other 25 to be rented at market rate…

NJ suburbs cool again? Millennials and others return for affordable homes
Jul 2, 2018 – app.com – … Reyes is part of a growing number moving from cities back to the suburbs, helping to stop a migration that has been draining New Jersey since the beginning of the decade…

Protesters Converge on Toll Brothers’ Open House in Mahwah at Apple Ridge construction site
Jun 25, 2018 – The Ridgewood Blog – Probably never in the history of these three Bergen County towns Mahwah, Ramsey and Upper Saddle River residents who live along East Crescent Road heard so many drivers honking their horns…

More scrutiny of deals that municipalities make with developers?
Jun 12, 2018 – NJSpotlight – State lawmakers want increased regulation of local tax agreements [PILOTs] that can adversely affect funding for school districts. As lawmakers consider increasing the amount of aid the state gives to K-12 school districts this year, they’re also advancing legislation that would bring more scrutiny to special tax agreements between local officials and developers that can also influence the bottom line for school districts…

Planning Board Advances On Parker Redevelopment
Jun 28, 2018 – Westfield Leader – SCOTCH PLAINS: The planning board on Monday gave its approval to a report declaring the Parker Gardens property on Terrill Road as an Area in Need of Redevelopment, clearing the first hurdle in turning the 13.5-acre property into an apartment and condo development that will help the township meet its affordable-housing obligations. The plan is to construct apartments containing 228 units along with two rows of townhomes that will front on Terrill Road…

Eminent domain could be next for Emerson properties slated for redevelopment
Jun 27, 2018 – Northjersey.com – A state Superior Court judge ruled that the borough’s plan to provide affordable housing, which hinges on a controversial redevelopment project on Kinderkamack Road, is fair to low- and moderate-income people. Now, the only thing standing between the borough and the proposed downtown revitalization, integral to meeting constitutional obligations to provide affordable homes, officials say, is a pending lawsuit filed by two property owners in the redevelopment area who refuse to sell to the chosen developer…

That quaint neighborhood where you go for Portuguese food?  Say hello to high-rises
Jun 27, 2018 – NJ.com – A 12-story building will rise in the Ironbound section of Newark — the first such development under a new, yet controversial measure that allows much taller buildings to sprout near Penn Station. The Central Planning Board on Monday approved a 403-unit residential building with 3,300 square-feet of retail space…

Developer seeking relief from affordable housing obligation meets resistance
May 10, 2018 – NJ.com – JERSEY CITY: Plans for a new 35-story tower at Metro Plaza are in limbo after the City Council voted Wednesday to  postpone a vote on a measure that would release the proposed developer from a requirement to build affordable housing in the high-rise…

As NJ Rents Continue to climb, finding an apartment becomes even tougher
Jun 14, 2018 – NJSpotlight – Hundreds of thousands of residents don’t earn enough to cover the rent on an average two-bedroom, without struggling to pay other bills and meet routine expenses. Rental costs rose more than 3 percent in New Jersey over the past year, making the state the sixth most-unaffordable when it comes to renting a typical two-bedroom apartment…

Impact of Vermella complex on Union schools unclear
Jun 14, 2018 – Union News Daily – A study commissioned by the local school board last year projected the student population would increase by 63 after the construction of about 450 residential units in the Vermella Union development on Morris Avenue…While the study indicated that 63 new students would enter the school district as a result of the first phase of the Vermella Union development, there are some discrepancies between this study and the township’s official number and breakdown for the types of expected units in the new developments…

Groundbreaking at Fanwood’s Station Square
June 24, 2017 – TAP into ScotchPlans/Fanwood – … “Station Square will transform the face of Fanwood,” Mayor Mahr told the crowd. “It’s going to be awesome and beautiful.” The property, known to longtime residents of the borough as the “Dean Oil site,” has long been of focus of downtown redevelopment in Fanwood. The 35 units will be comprised of 28 market rate rental units and 7 at affordable rates…

More scrutiny of deals that municipalities make with developers?
Jun 12, 2018 – NJ Spotlight – State lawmakers want increased regulation of local tax agreements that can adversely affect funding for school districts. As lawmakers consider increasing the amount of aid the state gives to K-12 school districts this year, they’re also advancing legislation that would bring more scrutiny to special tax agreements between local officials and developers that can also influence the bottom line for school districts…

Toms River planners approve 128 apartments near Seacourt Pavilion
Jun 12, 2018 – App.com – The Toms River Planning Board has approved Kaplan Co.’s proposal to build Camelot at Seacourt, an apartment complex that will be built on 17 acres of land not far from the intersection of Bay and Hooper Avenues… Thomas E. Monahan, the Toms River lawyer who represented  Kaplan before the planning board, said the apartments would be “high-end rentals,” with one bedrooms going for about $1,800, and two bedrooms for more than $2,000 a month… The project is included in Toms River’s affordable housing plan, and 28 of the apartments will be set aside as affordable units…

School taxes are hammering people in these N.J. towns. See how yours stacks up
Jun 11, 2018 – NJ.com – Some homeowners in New Jersey pay more than 1 out of every 10 dollars they earn annually in their paychecks to their local school system, an NJ Advance Media Analysis finds, but the burden of education spending is not evenly distributed across the state — also also not what you might expect…Many middle class towns fare worst, the analysis found…

Morris Avenue complex slated for 1,528 apartments
Jun 10, 2018 – Union News Daily – UNION, NJ: Township officials expect little to no effect on local school enrollment after the first phase of a potential 1,528-unit, mixed-use apartment complex and retail space is completed along Morris Avenue…

Most N.J. school districts are getting screwed by the state – is yours one of them?
Jun 10, 2018 – NJ.com – If you live in New Jersey, there’s a good chance your school district is getting cheated. The state has a formula that says exactly much money it should give each district so kids get the education they deserve. But it hasn’t fully paid in almost a decade, leaving districts to raise taxes, cut jobs and put off new initiatives to make up the difference…

Watchung Borough Mayor and Council Approve Affordable Housing Settlement
Jun 9, 2018 – TAPintoBerkeleyHeights – The Watchung Borough Council voted on Thursday night to settle its third round affordable housing obligation mandated by the state of New Jersey. Watchung Borough’s immunity from
builder’s remedy lawsuits expires on June 30… None of the council members, or Pote, were actually in favor of the resolution but instead voted in favor as a matter of risk management…

Kushner Real Estate proposes 607 housing units in East Hanover
Jun 9, 2018 – Daily Record – Kushner Real Estate Acquisitions  wants to build 607 townhouses and apartments on River Road land currently owned by the maker of Oreos, Triscuits, Chips Ahoy! and other snacks…

Russo Details Petro/Casale Demolition, Cleanup of Site
Jun 7, 2018 – Westfield Leader – GARWOOD: Russo Development held a town-hall meeting last Wednesday evening at Lincoln School to address any resident concerns regarding public safety during the Petro/Casale building demolition on South Avenue and subsequent cleanup…

Smith to Host Town Hall On Overdevelopment
Jun 7, 2018 – Westfield Leader – SCOTCH PLAINS — Mayor Alexander Smith will host a public town hall meeting on Tuesday, June 12, at 7 p.m., at the Scotch Plains Municipal Building, 430 Park Avenue, in the Town Council Chambers, to discuss courts forcing overdevelopment in local communities. Mayor Smith will be joined by Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi (R-39th, Westwood)…

Editorial: Preserving Our Past In the Midst Of Present, Future Redevelopment
June 7, 2018 – Westfield Leader – A pivotal issue for much of our readership  area right now is redevelopment, particularly large-scale projects earmarked or underway for Scotch Plains, Fanwood, Cranford and Garwood. Public concerns remain over how these retail and residential developments will impact municipalities, notably school district populations, traffic and infrastructure. Town hall-style meetings have recently been held or scheduled
in an effort to address these concerns…

141 apartments to be built on Route 9 in Toms River
Apr 24, 2018 – App.com – A 141-unit apartment complex on Route 9 has been approved by the township Planning Board. The Woods at Toms River will be located between Sunset Avenue and Church Road behind the Victoria and Jonathan plazas. It would include 113 market-rate rental apartments and 28 affordable units…

Bernards Objects to Far Hills’ Douglas Road Housing Plan, Requests Meeting
Feb 18, 2018 – TAPintoBaskingRidge – Bernards Township officials have formally objected to a proposal by Far Hills Borough to build state-ordered
affordable housing as part of a 91-unit housing complex at the Bernards border at the corner of Douglas and Liberty Corner roads, according to a release from Bernards Township…The release said the township objects to the plan on the basis that the Douglas Road site is not suitable for such a development because the properties located across Douglas Road and situated in the Township are large residential homes on minimum 3-acre lots…

‘Unlawful Conspiracy’ Keeps Out Rival Builders in Edgewater, Suit Claims
Dec 7, 2017 – New York Times – … Mr. Daibes, who has built about 3,000 market-rate apartments in Edgewater, controls the development rights to 90 percent of the sites zoned for high density development in Edgewater today. He and the town have been criticized for failing to comply with the state-mandated affordable housing obligations in this once-blue-collar borough…

New Jersey Town Says ‘No Thanks’ to Development
Oct 4, 2017 – New York Times – …Major cities, and towns as small as Edgewater — a 3.5-mile long, two-block wide community wedged between the Hudson River and the Palisades cliffs — are dealing with an unprecedented wave of luxury development that is transforming the social fabric, as housing prices soar beyond the reach of many families…

Why The Meadowlands Could Experience Chronic Flooding Soon
Jun 5, 2018 – Mahwah Patch – Rising sea levels and increased development and infrastructure could contribute to the Meadowlands being flooded often…

Jill Horner speaks with Hemant Marathe, Mayor from West Windsor Township, about School Funding. (video)
May 30, 2018 – COMCAST Newsmakers – West Windsor Mayor, Hemant Marathe, speaking about school underfunding, including the effects of affordable housing obligation…

Hartz Mountain to Continue Application at Cranford Planning Board on July 18
Jun 2, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – According to James Rhatican, director of land use and development for Hartz Mountain, certain witnesses are unable to appear at the June 6 planning board meeting…

PSE&G Looking to Buy Third of 750 Walnut Ave.
May 24, 2018 – Westfield Leader – CRANFORD: While Hartz Mountain Industries is seeking to rezone 750 Walnut Avenue for residential use, PSE&G is pursuing the idea of building an electrical substation on a third of the 30-acre property…There was no further information provided on this attempt to acquire a third of the property by PSE&G made initially a year ago, about the same time Hartz had applied with the township to rezone…

Garwood Mayor Schedules Town Meeting On Redevelopment
May 18, 2018 – Westfield Leader – “While a resident has recently raised
concerns about air quality at the Petro/Casale cleanup site … I have arranged for a Town Hall meeting at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, May 30, at the Lincoln School to alleviate your concerns…”

Assemblyman To Host Town Hall On Affordable Housing In Watchung
May 18, 2018 – Watchung Patch – Assembly Leader John Bramnick for Somerset and Union counties will hold a Town Hall meeting to discuss Affordable Housing in Watchung. This Town Hall Meeting will be held on June 5 at 7 p.m. in the Watchung Borough Court House…

Lawsuit: Millburn owes 1,373 affordable housing units
May 15, 2018 – Northjersey.com – A vacant lot that was once home to a service station at the corner of Woodland and Chatham roads is at the center of a lawsuit over the township’s lack of affordable housing. The litigation, filed in Superior Court in Essex County on April 23 by the Short Hills-based [Developer] Silverman Group…
NOTE: Millburn has only 6,813 households.

Assembly Leader Bramnick Talks Affordable Housing
May 14, 2018 – Basking Ridge Patch – Assembly Leader Jon Bramnick Town Hall held a town hall on Monday night in Basking Ridge to address affordable housing concerns…

Asbury Park getting private beach club; will it limit beach access?
May 16, 2018 – Asbury Park Press – iStar announced part of its new Asbury Ocean Club, Surfside Resort and Residences at 1101 Ocean Avenue project will include a private beach club…

Holly Schepisi Slams Murphy for cutting affordable housing fund
May 14, 2018 – Holly Schepisi Facebook Post

Morris Plains nears approval of hotel, 715 townhouses, apartments to settle lawsuits
May 11, 2018 – Daily Record – A tentative agreement has been reached between borough officials and developers to build 715 townhouses and apartments off Route 53 and American Road. The deal needs court approval to proceed. The agreement would settle two developer lawsuits filed four and five years ago against the borough…

Bernards Twp. to host Assemblyman Jon Bramnick at May 14 town hall. Hosted by Friends of Stop the Quarry Plan

Despite campaign promises, Murphy plans to raid Affordable-Housing Fund
MAY 10, 2018 – NJSpotlight – The governor wants to use almost $78 million dedicated to building homes for low-and middle-income residents to plug holes in the general fund. As a candidate, Phil Murphy pledged he would not
follow his predecessor’s path and divert affordable-housing funds to plug holes in the state budget. But as governor, he is doing just that and more, proposing to take even more money away from two sources of housing
funds than former Gov. Chris Christie…

Cranford Township Committee Approves PILOT for Birchwood Development
May 9, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – The Cranford Township Committee approved an ordinance authorizing a PILOT (Payment in Lieu of Taxes) agreement with Birchwood Developers Urban Renewal Associates, LLC at Tuesday night’s meeting. Under the agreement, Birchwood Developers will pay the township 11 percent of its annual gross revenue for the next 30 years…

Affordable-housing fight will account for about half of Park Ridge property tax increase
May 7, 2018 – NorthJersey.com – Money spent last year to fight a developer that wants to build large-scale multifamily housing in town will cost an average
taxpayer about $68 this year. The $320,000 line item accounts for about half of the 4.8 percent bump in borough property taxes…

Cranford Township Committee Introduces PILOT Ordinance for Birchwood Development
Apr 11, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – With a 4-to-1 majority vote, the Cranford Township Committee introduced an ordinance that establishes a financial agreement with Birchwood Developers Associates, LLC for the Birchwood Avenue redevelopment at Tuesday night’s meeting…

Townhall on Affordable Housing (West Windsor, NJ).  
Apr 24, 2018 – YouTube – Featured speaker – NJ Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi

Belleville Apartment Complex Proposed For Old Battery  Plant Site. The NJ Sierra Club director opposes the plan because he’s “concerned about people living on a toxic site that is not properly cleaned up.”
Apr 4, 2018 – Belleville Patch – The property at 81-179 Belmont Avenue in Belleville was once the site of a Thomas Edison battery manufacturing plant.
But soon, there may be hundreds of local families living there if developers gain approval to turn the property into a mixed-use complex with 232 residential units…
NOTE: Belleville Planning Board gave their approval to a developers site plan.

DEP blocks Lakewood plan that foes fear would double population
Apr 24, 2018 – NJ.com – The state has blocked — for now, at least — zoning changes proposed by Lakewood that opponents fear would double the population of the already rapidly growing township and hurt the environmentally-sensitive Pinelands region… Lakewood failed to show it could supply enough water for drinking, cooking and bathing to areas that would be zoned for much higher density under the proposed changes…

Affordable housing expansion in Downtown Jersey City hits snag
Apr 24, 2018 – NJ.com – …The developers behind a planned 35-story, 432-unit tower on Marin Boulevard originally slated to include 87 affordable apartments may have zero, with the developers saying they can’t build the affordable units without a state tax break that is no longer available…

USR Officials: Stop-Work Order Report Is Wrong, Muddy Water Isn’t Tainted
Apr 25, 2018 – Northern Highlands Daily Voice – UPPER SADDLE RIVER, N.J. — Upper Saddle River Mayor Joanne Minichetti said Wednesday that a report of a stop-work order being issued by a county or state agency against pumping muddy water into a nearby stream from a site slated for dozens of luxury homes in Upper Saddle River and Mahwah was incorrect … In the text, Kerry Pflugh, director of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s Office of Local Government Assistance, says that a stop-work order had been issued in response to residents’ concerns about possible contamination in the runoff…

DEP: Muddy Water Pumped From Mahwah/USR Site Into Stream Ordered Stopped
Apr 24, 2018 – Northern Highlands Daily Voice – UPPER SADDLE RIVER, N.J. — Following the release of a video by a concerned citizen, pressure from a state assemblywoman and coverage from Daily Voice, Bergen County authorities have ordered builders to stop pumping muddy water into a nearby stream from a site slated for dozens of luxury homes in Upper Saddle River and Mahwah…

Lawmaker: NJ Probes Pumping Into Stream From Mahwah/USR Construction Site
Apr 22, 2018 – Northern Highlands Daily Voice – UPPER SADDLE RIVER, N.J. – State environmental authorities on Monday will investigate the pumping of muddy water into a stream from a luxury-housing construction site at the former Apple Ridge Country Club in northwest Bergen County, state Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi said…

Bernards Twp. to host Assemblyman Jon Bramnick at May 14 town hall
Apr 20, 2018 – NJ.com – Friends of Stop the Quarry Plan, Assemblyman Jon Bramnick (R-21st) and Bernards Township have announced a town hall meeting to be held Monday, May 14, at 7 p.m. in the Bernards Township Municipal Building, Warren Craft Meeting Room, 1 Collyer Lane Basking Ridge. After the recent discussions regarding affordable housing and citizen concerns related to over-development in Bernards Township, many members of the Friends group reached out to Bramnick requesting a town hall meeting…

Texas Gov. Abbott to tax-burdened New Jersey residents: ‘Come to Texas’
Apr 18, 2018 – FOX News – Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott is urging tax-burdened New Jersey residents to move to the lone star state, following the release of New Jersey’s budget proposal calling for tax hikes in the state where rates are already among the highest in the nation…

Birchwood OK’d for three buildings, 225 apartments
Apr 13, 2018 – Union News Daily – The local planning board unanimously gave its final approval for the construction of three, 50-foot, four-story apartment buildings on the Birchwood property at its April 4 meeting, ending a decade long fight over the area, which lies on the Kenilworth border…

Cranford Township Committee Introduces PILOT Ordinance for Birchwood Development
Apr 11, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – With a 4-to-1 majority vote, the Cranford Township Committee introduced an ordinance that establishes a financial agreement with Birchwood Developers Associates, LLC for the Birchwood Avenue redevelopment at Tuesday night’s meeting. The ordinance solidifies a long-term tax exemption Payment In Lieu Of Taxes (PILOT) program for the Birchwood property…

Somerset County towns move forward with affordable housing plans
Apr 10, 2018 – myCentralJersey.com – The landscape of many suburban towns in Somerset County will be changing as municipalities race to adopt proposals to meet court-mandated affordable housing quotas…in towns known more for homes on sizable lots than apartment buildings…

Bramnick to Discuss Affordable Housing at Town Hall Meeting on May 14
Apr 13, 2018 – TAPintoBaskingRidge – Assembly Minority Leader Jon Bramnick, (R-21) will hold a Town Hall Meeting in Bernards Township to discuss affordable housing next month…

Judge Denies CIP Bid to Add Quarry Housing to Affordable Housing Plan in Bernards
Apr 15, 2018 – TAPintoBaskingRidge – A state judge has knocked down a legal motion by a development group seeking to build up to 380 apartments and townhouses at the defunct Millington Quarry as a part of Bernards Township’s required state affordable housing plan…The township through its attorney John Belardo asserted that the CIP had missed a deadline to even ask the court to become an “intervenor” in becoming a part of Bernards affordable housing plan…

Cranford resident seeks Mount Laurel help from nonprofit
Apr 9, 2018 – Union News Daily – A longtime Cranford resident was hoping to assist the township with its Mount Laurel housing obligations, and wanted the zoning board to use some leverage with a nonprofit organization to do so at the board’s recent meeting…

Barnegat Candidates Want “Protective Measures” to Curb Lakewood-Style Development
Apr 2, 2018 – Ocean County Politics – Former Democrat Commiteewoman Elaine Taylor and Republican Bill Cox have entered the fray as independent candidates in the 2018 township committee race. The two have marked their entrance to the race by calling for tougher restrictions on development amid a spike in rental properties owned by LLCs in the township…

More scrutiny in Lakewood development
Jan 28, 2018 – NJ.com – Residents of the Fairways at Lake Ridge bought with the promise and idea that they were living next to a golf course. But the  course was sold last January and the state DEP and Lakewood master plan is allowing a 1200 unit development. The homeowners have filed suit to stop the building…

The U.S. States People Are Fleeing (And The Ones They Are Moving To)
Forbes.com – This past year, United Van Lines, a moving company that operates throughout the country, moved about 110,000 families and provided each with a simple questionnaire to discover the reasons they were moving. New Jersey is # 2 on the list of states people are leaving…

Holly Schepisi: A Community Discussion on the History & Future of Affordable Housing (YouTube)
Mar 30, 2018 – Mahwah Strong – On March 28, 2018, MahwahStrong.org organized and sponsored “A Community Discussion on the History & Future of Affordable Housing” at the Mahwah Public Library. Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi discussed the affordable housing landscape: the history, current status, impact on communities and what can be changed. The well-received presentation was both informative and eye-opening…

Rahway flood plan moves to New England corps for help
Mar 23, 2018 – Essex Daily News – The multimillion-dollar plan to mitigate major flooding along the Rahway River has reached the final approval stage and, to help move the project along, the review process has been transferred to the New England District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, officials said. “It’s not uncommon for work to be shared across districts within the North Atlantic Division of the Army Corps,” U.S. Army Corps of Engineers New York District spokesman Hector Mosley said in an interview…

Jackson Approves Affordable Housing Project
Mar 23, 2018 – Jersey Shore Online – Describing it as a bad choice versus a “really bad choice” members of the Jackson Council voted on March 13 to approve a contentious affordable housing project…The zoning permits up to 1,100 dwelling units and requires 20 percent of the units to be set aside for low and moderate-income households, with 17 percent of the affordable units to be set aside for very low-income households…

‘Pay-to-play’ issue returns to Cranford committee
Mar 11, 2018 – Union News Daily – The issue of elected officials accepting campaign contributions from firms that perform services for the municipality returned to the spotlight at the township committee on Feb. 27, about a month after some were excoriated for the practice during discussions about a redevelopment study. The practice is legal — though contentious — if campaign contributions of more than $300 are reported to the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission…

Here’s How Much You Need To Earn To Live In Union County
Mar 21, 2018 – Cranford Patch – Union County is one of the priciest places to live in New Jersey, according to the Economic Policy Institute. The organization recently released its 2018 family budget calculator that
estimates how costly it is to live in each of America’s 3,142 counties and 611 metro areas…

Mahwah affordable-housing settlement calls for 800 homes at Crossroads property
Mar 21, 2018 – northjersey.com – Eight hundred housing units and 300,000 square feet of retail space will be built at the Crossroads property on Route 17 near the state line, according to an affordable-housing settlement recently approved by the township. For years, the 140-acre property – also home to the Sheraton Mahwah Hotel – was the proposed site of a controversial shopping mall that residents had opposed, citing its possible impact on quality of life and traffic…

What has 3 bedrooms, 2 cars and costs a pretty penny? See N.J.’s most typical home
Mar 15, 2018 – NJ.com – Even as one of the most densely populated areas in the country, the single-family, detached home is still king in New Jersey. While multi-unit housing is plentiful, the majority of housing remains in line with the typical embodiment of the American Dream — white picket fence optional…

Affordable Housing Solution Coming For NJ, Lt. Gov.  Promises
Mar 14, 2018 – NJ101.com – Mayors and council members gathered Wednesday at the Statehouse for their annual lobbying event that includes panels with lawmakers and Cabinet members … they posed few questions about the spending plan – but a ton about affordable housing … Murphy said as a candidate that New Jersey faces an affordable housing crisis, but Oliver said there’s also a price to pay for overdevelopment…

Westfield Town Council Endorses Housing Element and Fair Share Plan, Approves 9 Related Ordinances
Mar 14, 2018 – TAPintoWestfield – The Westfield Town Council endorsed the Housing Element and Fair Share Plan and voted to approve nine ordinances on final reading during Tuesday’s town council meeting in accordance with the settlement that the town reached with the Fair Share Housing Center in November. Seven of the ordinances create “overlay” zones that allow property owners to develop multi-family housing…

Judge says NJ towns must allow affordable housing, maybe more than 150,000 new units
Mar 8, 2018 – northjersey.com – In a ruling that could shape the way towns across the state look and have an impact on schools and traffic, a Superior Court judge said Thursday that municipalities must take steps now that could allow for roughly 155,000 housing units to be built over the next decade.

Hanover Township, NJ Presentation on COAH, March 5, 2018
Mar 5, 2018 – youtube.com – Multifamily housing in Hanover Township – past, present and future. A complete audio recording of the presentation, together with slides. Presented by Township Planner Blais Brancheau at the Whippanong Library in Whippany, NJ

Cranford Ranks High for Millennials on Niche’s 2018 “Best Places to Live” Lists
Mar 7, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – …Niche ranked Cranford No. 55 (of 573) in New Jersey on its “Best Places for Millennials” list and No. 50 (of 413) in New Jersey on its “Best Suburbs for Millennials” list. Overall, the township ranked No. 76 (of 513) in New Jersey on Niche’s “Best Places to Live” list…

N.J. leads the nation in foreclosures. See which county had the most
Jan 25, 2018 – NJ.com – New Jersey once again claimed the infamous honor of leading the nation in foreclosures in 2017…That’s far from the rest of the nation, which is experiencing 12-year lows, according to the report…

Clark to finally redevelop Westfield Avenue sites
Mar 5, 2018 – Union News Daily – The Township Council has passed a redevelopment study for the former A&P supermarket and the Rice Bowl restaurant properties on Westfield Avenue, the first step in clearing the way for potential Mount Laurel housing…

Belleville ditches developer after PILOT payment failure
Mar 1, 2018 – USA Today – A plan for the township’s 4th Ward called for 115 apartments in a four-story residence on top of a parking garage…But those plans likely will not come to fruition following the Township Council rescinding the developer’s agreement, the approval of which originally raised hackles among neighborhood residents…

Apartment construction is drying up. Is affordable housing measure to blame? Feb 19, 2018 – Oregonlive.com – Portland’s apartment-building binge appears to be headed off a cliff. Applications for new housing developments have nearly ground to a halt over the past year, and there are plenty of reasons for that. Construction costs have ballooned, as have land prices. The glut of new construction, meanwhile, has taken the wind out of rising rents, at least at the high end…

Mega builder resurrects plans to put up 4,000 homes in Pinelands
Feb 8, 2018 – NJ.com – In a controversial proposal with origins dating back more than 30 years, one of New Jersey’s biggest names in home building is seeking to develop 4,000 housing units on the site of a defunct sand pit in the Pinelands…

Toms River: Building moratorium needed in northwest part of town?
Jan 7, 2018 – app.com (part of USA Today Network) – Could a study of sewer capacity in the township’s northwest section lead to a building moratorium here? Councilman George E. Wittmann Jr. believes it can. Wittmann suggested Jan. 2 that the township ask the Toms River Municipal Utilities Authority to conduct such a study. “I’m suggesting a one-year moratorium on new development until the study is finished,” Wittmann said…

Who’s Powering the Housing Market? Surprise! It’s Millennials
Jun 5, 2017 – NBCNEWS.com – Millennials are growing up, settling down and looking to buy a house — for the extra room and the investment opportunity.
Millennials were the largest group of home buyers (34 percent) for the fourth consecutive year, according to NAR’s 2017 Home Buyer and Seller generational Trends study.  By comparison, baby boomers were 30 percent of buyers…

How many affordable homes will be built in Toms River?
Oct 26, 2016 – app.com (part of USA Today Network) – An agreement between the township and a state housing advocacy group requires the township to provide 1,285 units of affordable housing here through 2025 — the fourth highest amount in the state. The agreement with the Fair Share Housing Center and Dover Shopping Center Associates was approved unanimously Oct. 25 by the Township Council…

Mayor Bonaccorso Makes Move Toward Condemnation of Property He Calls ‘Eyesore’ on Westfield Avenue
Feb 8, 2018 – TAPintoClark – Mayor Sal Bonaccorso announced he is initiating legal action for condemnation of the former A&P building on Westfield Avenue. Bonaccorso made the announcement at Monday night’s public workshop council meeting…

Emerson property owners: Borough can’t use eminent domain to take land
Feb 8, 2018 – Northjersey.com – The borough’s claim that it can seize four downtown properties in the name of affordable housing is nothing more than a “whitewash” to help a for-profit development move forward, an attorney representing the targeted property owners said this week…

Dumont councilmen call on state to act on affordable housing, introduce zoning changes
Feb 6, 2018 – Northjersey.com – Borough Council members called on the state to act on affordable housing this week, as they introduced zoning changes that would allow construction of 48-foot-tall buildings downtown.
The proposed laws, which will be up for adoption when the council meets on March 6, are required as part of a controversial settlement officials reached in July with the Fair Share Housing Center, the state’s foremost advocate for affordable housing. That pact was approved by a judge in state Superior Court in September…

Cranford council relents on redevelopment plan
Feb 6, 2018 – Union News Daily – Two weeks of fury by downtown business and property owners has been quelled — at least for a moment — by township officials who removed their establishments from a study which suggested that a nearly 4-acre area be declared “in need of redevelopment.” …

Dumont to consider allowing taller buildings downtown
Feb 6, 2018 – Northjersey.com  – …The proposed laws, required as part of a controversial settlement reached with the Fair Share Housing Center in July – a pact sanctioned by a judge two months later – would create a 52-acre overlay zone that would permit structures of up to four stories. The tallest buildings would be allowed along West Shore Avenue and at the intersection of Madison and Washington avenues…

Schepisi makes clear high density housing will increase pollution
Feb 2, 2018 – YouTube – During a debate on state pollution in the Assembly Environment Committee, Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi brought the issue up after New Jersey Sierra Club director Jeff Tittel mentioned that vehicle exhaust accounts for 45 percent of the state’s greenhouse gas emissions.
“What sort of impact are we going to have with hundreds of thousands of new units of housing, potentially hundreds of thousands of new vehicles in the state with no plans to remedy that or address that?” …

Ex-mayor threatens to sue township he once governed
Feb 2, 2018 – NJ.com – After the clerk’s office told him they could not give him documents from several of last year’s Planning Board meetings, Nick Corcodilos has threatened to sue the Hunterdon County township he governed from 2006 through 2008…

Feb. 12 Superior Court Fairness Hearing Cancelled
Feb 2, 2018 – Clinton Township just issued a revised agenda for its February 7 council meeting, adding a 6:00 pm closed session about the settlement. The agenda includes an Action Item upon return from closed session at 7:00 pm: “Motion regarding proposed amendment to settlement agreement with Fair Share Housing Center …

Judge to review township’s proposed affordable housing deal
Feb 1, 2018 – centraljersey.com – Montgomery: A proposed settlement between Montgomery Township and the Fair Share Housing Center over the number of affordable housing units that the township must provide is set to be reviewed later this month by Somerset County Superior Court Judge Thomas C. Miller. Judge Miller will determine whether the settlement reached between the township and the nonprofit group, which calls for 616 affordable housing units, is fair and reasonable and also provides a realistic opportunity to create housing for low- and moderate-income households…

Bogota riverfront development moves forward
Feb. 1, 2018 – Northjersey.com – An industrial area that was once home to more than half a dozen large oil tanks will soon be the site of luxury apartments.  After years of borough Planning Board hearings, environmental cleanup and a lengthy permitting process, a large multifamily mixed-use development near the Hackensack River is moving forward and is slated to begin construction this spring…

More scrutiny in Lakewood development | Di Ionno
Jan 28, 2018 – NJ.com – In Lakewood, the argument over development can be boiled down to a few words. Enough is enough, is the position of residents who want to halt what they think is unabated development. The DEP rejected the proposal based on state CAFRA (Coastal Area Facility Review Act) rules, threats to wildlife and clean water, and traffic impact in the already congested township…

Gov. Phil Murphy transition reports offer wide-ranging ideas for ‘stronger,  fairer New Jersey’
Jan 28, 2018 – Burlington County Times – Murphy’s transition committee [which includes FSHC’s Kevin Walsh] recommended that the court-controlled process continue, but that he should appoint a senior deputy commissioner of housing within the Department of Community Affairs and create a statewide Commission of Housing to begin exploring the optimal administrative agent and process to govern municipal fair-share requirements…

Tempers Flare at Cranford Planning Board Meeting When Resident Questions Campaign Funding

Jan 25, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – The Cranford Planning Board meeting became combative on Wednesday evening after Cranford resident Jim Carvalho questioned campaign funds donated to Deputy Mayor Ann Dooley and Commissioner Mary O’Connor during the 2016 election…

Cranford Township Committee Updates Redevelopment Study as Clock Ticks for Mt. Laurel Immunity
Jan 24, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – Affordable housing concerns wove through commissioner and resident comments during Tuesday night’s township committee meeting, at which the committee passed a resolution exempting most properties from the North Avenue Redevelopment Study…

Cranford Historic Preservation Advisory Board Facebook Post
Jan 24, 2018 – Township Committee Member Jean-Albert Maisonneuve asked HPAB for comments regarding the North Avenue Redevelopment Draft Study. The document below was sent to the Township Committee on January 21…

Rahway River flood project still facing hurdles
Jan 23, 2018 – Union News Daily – CRANFORD, NJ:  A comprehensive Rahway River Flood Mitigation Project has been in the works for 20 years, and while a plan has been selected, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers spokesperson Hector Mosley said there are still hurdles…

Disputed Mount Laurel project set to go before Springfield council
Jan 22, 2018 – Union News Daily – SPRINGFIELD, NJ — A contentious proposal approved  by the Springfield Planning Board to build two apartment buildings — including six units set aside for Mount Laurel obligations — on Church Mall is expected to come before the Township Committee in February…

Residents, Business Owners Question Redevelopment Study
Jan 18, 2018 – The Westfield Leader – CRANFORD — “My dream was to buy this place, and I bought it with my best friend. And now we hear yesterday we may lose our place. Why?” Michael Tears, co-owner of Marino’s, asked the planning board Wednesday at a packed board meeting…

Township Reveals Affordable Housing Data and Locations
Jan 18, 2018 – The Westfield Leader – SCOTCH PLAINS – The Township week revealed what Scotch Plains’ affordable-housing obligations will be [598 units], with Mayor Alexander Smith expressing hope that the State Legislature will eventually take action to lessen the impact on towns…

Board Continues Review of South Ave. Development Plan
Jan 18, 2018 – The Westfield Leader – GARWOOD – The planning board continued its discussions last Wednesday on the South Avenue I (Casale/Petro Site) site plan review. The plan calls for construction of 298 units…

Cranford downtown redevelopment plan draws fire
Jan 18, 2018 – Union News Daily – …All three businesses [Carlito’s Barber Shop,  Marino’s Seafood Market and Restaurant, Carmen’s Foreign Car Repair], located on North Avenue East on the eastern edge of the downtown business district, are staples in Hayes’ routine, but were recently slated for condemnation in a township-commissioned “in need of redevelopment” study…

Residents rally against Cranford redevelopment proposal
Jan 11, 2018 – News12 – A group of Cranford residents packed the town’s planning board meeting Wednesday to protest a proposal to redevelop the downtown area. The residents say that they fear changes to the area will hurt businesses and even the town’s character…

Cranford Planning Board Hears Redevelopment Study for North Avenue East
Jan 11, 2018 – TAPintoCranford – Furious residents and business owners filled the municipal chambers on Wednesday evening as the Cranford Planning Board heard a presentation from Harbor Consultants regarding the redevelopment of a portion of North Avenue East…

Kean seeks reasons for college ‘brain drain’
Jan 6, 2018 – Union News Daily – … About 32,000 high school graduates left the Garden State for colleges elsewhere in 2014, the latest year data was available from the National Center for Education Statistics. That makes New Jersey the largest exporter of high school graduates in the country, just behind Idaho … “Many never return home after college to strengthen our workforce, build our economy, or to make civic contributions to our communities,” stated Sen. Tom Kean Jr…

Mayor Smith Says Housing Litigation is Finalized
Jan 4, 2018 – The Westfield Leader – Scotch Plains: Mayor Alexander Smith said on Tuesday that the township has finally reached a settlement of its affordable housing obligations with developers, although he expressed disappointment with the final numbers, which he said he hopes to share later this month … The mayor paraphrased Clark Mayor Sal Bonaccorso, who said of his own town’s affordable housing settlement: “I had a knife to my throat and a gun to my head.” …

See Older Articles