Land Use Legislative Update

The 2002-2003 Legislative Session has produced its share of Bills, which , if approved, would impact residential real estate and/or land use matters. What follows is just a sample of what may lie ahead….A1518 was introduced in the Assembly on August 8, 2002 and, if approved, would classify certain home occupations as permitted accessory uses if the particular home occupation complies with certain specified conditions. Among the findings noted in support of this Bill is the ever increasing number of individuals who, as a result of advances in telecommunications, work out of their homes.

A2699 was introduced in the Assembly on September 12, 2002 (An identical bill, S2106, was introduced in the Senate. Both A2699 and S2106 have had a second reading.) If approved, A2699 would amend the Municipal Land Use Law to provide that so long as there is no physical increase in structure, floor area, employees, etc., an increase in the rate of business or volume, or the intensification of use within a structure or on a lot that operates as a non conforming use would not be considered an expansion of the non conforming use.

A3376 was introduced in the Assembly on February 27, 2003 and, if approved, would require that as a condition of sale for any residential real property, the Seller must inspect any underground storage tank which is used to store heating oil. Similar to the provisions of the recently adopted Private Well Testing Act, at closing the Buyer and Seller would both be required to certify, in writing, that they have received and reviewed a copy of the inspection report.

Linda M. Herlihy is an Associate at WJ&L, who practices in the Land Use and Real Estate areas.

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