New Jersey’s environmental laws are some of the most aggressive and labyrinthine in the nation. Any significant project unfailingly faces an intricate array of Federal and state permitting requirements that can be daunting to even the most seasoned business executive. These regulations are not only exhaustive, but present a moving target, in that they are constantly being amended, rewritten, altered or influenced by new cases. The DeCotiis Environmental Law practice group has a long and distinguished record of shepherding projects through this difficult, shifting regulatory maze to successful conclusions.
Our group is at the forefront of negotiating and managing environmental risks in public, private and corporate real estate transactions, and enjoys a statewide reputation for expertise and innovation. We represent lending institutions, real estate developers, public entities in purchase and condemnation proceedings and both large and small corporations and businesses. Our attorneys provide advice and counsel to clients in the planning, development, procurement, construction and operation of large-scale, complex, mixed-use projects.
One of our Environmental Law Group’s most important strengths is a network of long-standing relationships that extend throughout the various permitting and environmental administrative bodies. The scope of these relationships, and the accompanying expertise, often mean that environmental issues can be handled quickly, early in the process, and at a lower administrative level. This saves time, money and often eliminates the need for more complex, prolonged higher-level proceedings.
Our approach to permitting issues is to develop a comprehensive strategy as early as possible, to involve the agency in planning from the outset, and to prepare for every conceivable contingency. Permitting agency coordination is crucial – in a multi-agency situation, it is invariably the relatively insignificant, overlooked administrative body that creates roadblocks and delays projects. Careful, expert planning and coordination prevents this.
The scope of the projects we have managed for clients ranges from individually owned small businesses to the New Jersey Turnpike Authority. Our practitioners have handled matters involving all environmental issues, from air emissions, to wetlands mitigation, dam safety and historic preservation. Our representation addresses all aspects of the administrative process associated with penalty and permit appeals. While our goal is typically to negotiate a favorable settlement of any penalty and/or permit-related issue, if settlement is unwarranted or not in our client's best interest, our attorneys have the skill and experience necessary to ensure the best possible result in the appropriate administrative or judicial forum.
We also have extensive experience managing all phases of the environmental remediation process, including selecting and engaging environmental consultants, negotiating and drafting administrative consent orders and settlement agreements, and assessing and allocating risks and costs between responsible parties. Our main objective is to assume control, as directed, over the assessment and remediation at a site. This experience has proven invaluable in cases in which DeCotiis has represented parties in pre-litigation negotiations and litigation involving cost recovery disputes under state and Federal regulations.
Whether involved in a straightforward real estate transaction, project coordination and permitting, a penalty and permit appeal, or an environmental remediation, attorneys in the Environmental Law Group combine their experience and in-depth legal knowledge to deliver successful outcomes to their clients in this complex and highly regulated field of law.