On August 24, 2011, Lt. Governor Guadagno signed legislation extending relief to developers from the previously implemented COAH 2.5% non-residential development fee requirement. The relief places an additional 2-year moratorium on the non-residential development fee requirement, and will apply retroactively to approvals obtained as of July 2010. Developers who obtain land development approvals prior to July 1, 2013 (and obtain building permits by December 31, 2015) will receive protection under the fee moratorium. A mechanism is also in place by which developers who previously paid a development fee may be entitled to a refund. Click here for additional information.
The Farmland Assessment Act of 1964 and the New Jersey Constitution allow for eligible farmland to be assessed at lower standards. Specifically, under the Farmland Assessment Act, upon application, the value of land (over 5 acres) that is actively devoted for agricultural/horticultural uses for at least 2 successive years immediately preceding the tax year at issue, is to be assessed at a value for agricultural or horticultural uses. Certain minimal revenue generating requirements pertaining to the sale of agricultural/horticultural products produced on the property must also be shown. The primary goals of the statute and constitutional amendment are to preserve “family farms” by providing “family” farmers with economic relief and to assist with the preservation of open space. However, as set forth below, even if a property meets all of the standards of the Farmland Assessment Act, if it is also used for commercial purposes, the benefits of the statute may not apply.