Search Site
Menu
Union Beach Sued Over Sewer Authoritys Wind Turbine Plans

January 26, 2011

Union Beach lacks power to rule on turbine, complaint says

By JIM McCONVILLE
APP.COM STAFF WRITER
The two-year battle over the construction of a 380-foot-high wind turbine has taken another twist, with the Bayshore Regional Sewerage Authority saying the borough lacks the power to rule on approving the project.

The authority’s attorney, Louis E. Granata of Matawan-based Granata, Wernick & Zaccardi, filed a complaint in state Superior Court, Freehold, on Dec. 29. The authority  which wants to build an energy-producing turbine – serves Hazlet, Union Beach, Matawan, Aberdeen, Keyport, Keansburg, Holmdel and Marlboro.

The authority’s civil complaint asks the court to restrain the Planning Board from taking further action that would “delay or interfere with the construction and operation” of the wind turbine.

The authority argues that the board has no jurisdiction over the estimated $7.7 million project, which has been approved by the state Department of Environmental Protection. The DEP issued a construction permit for the project under the state Coastal Area Facility Review Act in June.

That approval, the authority argues, supersedes local government rule.

However, Stuart J. Lieberman, a Princeton-based attorney who concentrates in environmental law and is representing Union Beach, said the authority’s claim that it is no longer beholden to municipal rule is frivolous.

“I am not aware of any regulatory provision that says, if you get a permit or authorization or blessing from the DEP, that you are then exempt from other governmental approval,” Lieberman said.

Lieberman said that while the DEP may have absolute authority in a state wetlands issue, it doesn’t apply to a local land use case.

“It’s a land use issue where they’re (the authority) erecting a structure and they happen to need both DEP and local approval,” Lieberman said. “And they now claim because they got the state approval, they now do not need local approval. That’s new to me.”

The authority’s court complaint comes on the heels of the Planning Board’s Dec. 8 rejection of the authority’s application to redraw its property lines to include a roughly half-acre tract purchased from Jersey Central Power & Light Co., land that the agency acquired for the wind turbine.

The board also ruled that the authority must reapply for a use variance in order for the board to consider whether the agency may add the plot to its property earmarked for the turbine.

The authority purchased the tract from JCP&L in October to ensure that the three rotating blades of the proposed 1.5-megawatt wind turbine will rotate over authority property, agency officials said.

The authority wants to use the half-acre, semi-circular lot to provide more room for the planned turbine’s 118-foot-long blades, as well as to ensure clearance for a 219.5-acre tract known as Conaskonk Point, a property that consists of environmentally sensitive lands, according to the site plan application prepared by T&M Associates of Middletown.

Our Attorneys

Recent Twitter Posts

  • NJ Supreme Court rules that property owner committed extreme violation of the Agriculture Retention and Development… https://t.co/EWqdQWErcv
    2 hours ago
  • Governor Murphy signs bill for marine fisheries management. https://t.co/j9hch68gSB
    1 day ago
  • North Jersey flooding is worst since Floyd, says Little Falls mayor. https://t.co/Euy7aVHVts
    1 day ago
  • With Lawsuits, New Jersey Signals Tougher Stance on the Environment. https://t.co/1Zcrce6Cur
    1 week ago

Recent Blog Posts

NJ Supreme Court Sees Standing in Tax Lienholders to Challenge Municipal Approval

On August 2, 2018, New Jersey’s Supreme Court held that a holder of a municipal tax lien may have standing to challenge a local planning board’s approval for a neighboring
Read More
NJ Supreme Court Sees Standing in Tax Lienholders to Challenge Municipal Approval

The Downside to Higher Ground: Appellate Division affirms finding of a townhome owner’s negligence and responsibility for water damage to a below unit caused by a prolonged leaking washing machine hose

On August 1, 2018, the Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division ruled in favor of plaintiff in the matter captioned Joseph S. D’Elia v. Joyce Campisi and Liberty Mutual
Read More
The Downside to Higher Ground: Appellate Division affirms finding of a townhome owner’s negligence and responsibility for water damage to a below unit caused by a prolonged leaking washing machine hose

United States Supreme Court Tackles Key Clean Water Act Judicial Review Issue

National Association of Manufacturers v. Department of Defense, et al. 583 U.S. ____ (2018) Decided January 22, 2018 Since the passing of the Clean Water Act in 1972, the definition of “the waters
Read More
United States Supreme Court Tackles Key Clean Water Act Judicial Review Issue

New Jersey Voters to Decide Important State Constitutional Amendment concerning the Environment

On Tuesday, November 7, 2017, New Jersey voters will be asked to decide on a state constitutional amendment regarding the use of natural resource damages collected by the State in
Read More
New Jersey Voters to Decide Important State Constitutional Amendment  concerning the Environment

In the media

  • Gulf Coast Town Center facing foreclosure

    Naples Daily News, September 16, 2015

    Wells Fargo filed a lawsuit Sept. 8 against an affiliate of CBL & Associates, the owners of the decadeold, 1.2 million-square-foot mall in south Fort Myers for a $190.9 million unpaid loan. The center has 94 stores on 204 acres, with such anchors as Super Target, Belk, Best Buy, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Marshalls and Costco...

    Read More
  • Town liable for private company's leaking underground tanks, court rules

    NJ.com Jul 26, 2017

    CRANFORD -- A couple that owned a businesses in town and became sick from leaking underground tanks owned by an adjacent business can sue the township for damages because the tanks were partially ...

    Read More
  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4
  5. 5
Contact Our Firm

Quick Contact Form