Changes to HDSRF Limit Funds Available for Site Remediation

Title:
Changes to HDSRF Limit Funds Available for Site Remediation
Publication:
Riker Danzig Environmental UPDATE June 2018
Attorney:
Practice:

Earlier this year, New Jersey passed legislation (Assembly Bill 1954) that changed the availability of certain funding to public and private entities under the Hazardous Discharge Site Remediation Fund (“HDSRF” or the “Fund”). The HDSRF program provides grants and loans to public entities and certain private entities that require financial assistance to investigate and remediate suspected or known contaminated sites. The HDSRF program is funded through the New Jersey Corporate Business Tax and is jointly administered through a partnership between the NJDEP and the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (“NJEDA”).

Below is a list of notable changes to the HDSRF program as a result of Assembly Bill 1954:

The amendments to the HDSRF program also place timeframes on the completion of certain remediation tasks for which the funds were awarded, including a requirement to expend the funds for a preliminary assessment or site investigation within two (2) years of the date of the award and to expend the funds for a remedial investigation within five (5) years of the award date. If the funding is not used within these timeframes, the award will be cancelled. In addition, the new law has changed the priority of funding awarded from the HDSRF so that properties owned by municipalities in BDAs are given priority over sites in Planning Area 1 (Metropolitan) and Planning Area 2 (Suburban) pursuant to the State Planning Act. Properties where contamination poses an imminent and significant threat to human health, a drinking water source or a sensitive or significant ecological resource are still given first priority. The NJEDA has also been tasked with developing criteria requiring municipalities, counties and redevelopment entities to develop a property within three (3) years of the completion of the remediation. Interested parties should review these changes carefully to determine how they may impact their ability to finance remediation and brownfields redevelopment. 

For more information, please contact the author Jaan M. Haus at jhaus@riker.com or any attorney in our Environmental Practice Group.en