DEP won’t rescind septic-tank rule in Highlands, despite legislative action

new jersey environment, highlands

TOM JOHNSON / NJ SPOTLIGHT – The state Department of Environmental Protection is refusing to withdraw a rule involving development in the New Jersey Highlands, a proposal lawmakers recently sought to invalidate.

In a letter to legislative leaders Friday, DEP Commissioner Bob Martin said the Legislature acted outside its constitutional authority to abolish a rule governing septic tank density within the preservation area of the Highlands.

The letter may be moot because Martin will be replaced as commissioner of the department this week and a new commissioner is likely to move to repeal and change the regulations, although that process could take months given the constraints of changing state rules …

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