The New Jersey Legislature is moving to require companies that want to put projects on land acquired for open-space preservation to pay more to the state than they have in the past, Tom Johnson reports today in NJ Spotlight
"In a unanimous vote this past Monday, the Senate Environment and Energy Committee urged approval of a bill () that would require an assessment of how much revenue a project would generate, a process that would deliver more value to taxpayers who paid for the preservation in the first place, according to proponents.
"The bill was spurred by revelations about how little the state was receiving for various projects that crisscross protected land, such as natural-gas pipelines and transmission lines. Some of the projects traverse the New Jersey Highlands; another has been proposed for the heart of the Pinelands.
“It appeared to be from an economic perspective, the state was getting the short end of the stick, to put it mildly,’’ said Sen. Gerald Cardinale (R-Bergen), a cosponsor of the bill."