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An update on the New Jersey Economic Opportunity Act of 2013

 An update on the New Jersey Economic Opportunity Act of 2013 from our member, EWMA:

New Jersey Economic Opportunity Act of 2013
Spurs Brownfields Redevelopment Opportunities

The New Jersey Economic Opportunity Act of 2013 (the Act) passed last September includes funds intended to promote redevelopment of urban areas, suburban office parks and areas impacted by Hurricane Sandy, while fostering job creation.  The Act provides eligibility for economic incentives and lowers the thresholds for meeting eligibility requirements for existing programs.  Given the highly industrialized nature of this state and the demand for residential housing options, however, it is inevitable that developers will encounter environmental issues in connection with these projects, especially in urban areas.  The Act's economic incentives can offset the financial impact of environmental risks and help facilitate brownfields redevelopment.

A focus of the new law is rebuilding New Jersey's cities; it emphasizes spurring development and private sector job growth in "Garden State Growth Zones," identified as the four lowest median family income cities in the state (Camden, Trenton, Passaic and Paterson).  Projects in these cities will have significantly lower eligibility thresholds and higher levels for tax incentives.  They also will be eligible for property tax abatements for new development to encourage even more private sector jobs and residential growth.  Another portion of the Act is the Economic Redevelopment and Growth (ERG) program, which includes $600 million for qualified residential projects.  Certain projects can qualify for 100% credit of its capital investment.  Many of these redevelopment projects will have environmental implications, ranging from initial due diligence activities, to ISRA compliance and site remediation projects.  

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