Coughlin, Pinkin & Diegnan Cost-Cutting Bill to Allow Towns to Email Planning, Zoning Documents Heads to Gov’s Desk

Bill Aimed at Reducing Administrative Costs for Local Governments

Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Craig Coughlin, Nancy Pinkin and Patrick Diegnan to help municipalities cut administrative costs now heads to the governor’s desk, having received final legislative approval from the Senate on Thursday.

“This legislation will help cut unnecessary costs for municipalities and save taxpayer dollars,” said Coughlin (D-Middlesex). “We have the means to communicate and deliver information electronically, and we ought to take advantage of the resources available through technology.”

The bill (A-3390) would permit notice by email of certain documents required under the “Municipal Land Use Law.” Current law requires notice by personal service or certified mail to the clerk of an adjoining municipality of all hearings on the adoption, revision or amendment of a development regulation involving property situated within 200 feet at least 10 days prior to the hearing date. Such notice also must be made to the county planning board.

“Municipalities can save time and money by using resources already available to them to complete these routine tasks,” said Pinkin (D-Middlesex), who served for three years on the East Brunswick Planning Board. “Over time, the savings from this legislation will add up and make a difference in towns across New Jersey.”

“Ultimately, it’s small changes like this that advance the long-term goal of using hard-earned taxpayer dollars in the best way,” said Diegnan (D-Middlesex). “New technology allows all us to be more efficient in our personal and professional lives, and there’s no reason why government can’t do the same.”

The measure was approved unanimously by both houses of the legislature.