Avoid Getting Tangled in the Red Tape: Confirm Your Registered Approvals Qualify for Permit Extension Act Protection
The Permit Extension Act of 2020 (“PEA”) extends certain governmental permits and approvals for the duration of the COVID-19 Extension Period, but with a catch: you must have taken affirmative action to register qualifying approvals. The law provides: “[a]ny government approval subject to the automatic suspension of the running period of such approval for the COVID-19 extension period shall be registered with the department within 30 days of the notice in the New Jersey register.” The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (“DEP”) published NJ Register notice on September 8, 2020, and qualifying approvals were required to be registered by October 8, 2020.
Not content with limiting the rights of permittee’s by the registration process, the Legislature added more red tape in the law by requiring DEP to publish a list of all registered approvals. Without much fanfare, DEP published a list of registered approvals on its website. A link to the list of registered approvals can be found here. If you registered an approval with DEP, you should review the list of registered approvals published by DEP to confirm that your approval is included on the list, and contact DEP for corrective action if it is not to ensure you obtain the benefit of PEA protection. For those who successfully cut through the law’s red tape, the COVID-19 Extension Period began on March 9, 2020 and will continue until the end of the COVID-19 public health emergency with at least six months additional tolling thereafter.
Linda M. Lee, Michael P. Castore, Donna A. McBarron and Steven J. Corodemus contributed to this article.