News Article • 7/20/2018 • by Tom Johnson at NJ Spotlight
Lisa Plevin, a former chief of staff at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Region II office, will become the new executive director of the Highlands Council.
The council voted unanimously to appoint Plevin, who’s expected to take up the post in August. She replaces Margaret Nordstrom, who held the job since 2014.
The appointment of Plevin, a former aide to U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), is the latest move by Gov. Phil Murphy to reshape the council, which oversees the Highlands region, a sprawling area of more than 800,000 acres of woodland, lakes and hills that provides drinking water to 6 million people.
News Article • 7/9/2018 • by Tom Johnson at NJ Spotlight
State Sen. Bob Smith has long argued for a toll to help fund renewal of New Jersey’s century-old water system. He thinks the time just might be right to get it done
It has never won support in the past, but a state senator is reviving a decades-old bill that would impose a fee on water use to fund the rebuilding of New Jersey’s aging water infrastructure.
News Article • 7/5/2018 • by Jordan Schultz at Waste Dive
On Monday, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy removed any mention of a 5-cent fee associated with single-use bags from the state budget via a line-item veto, reports NJ.com.
News Article • 7/3/2018 • by Michael Sol Warren at NJ.com
Nothing is in the bag when it comes to a proposed 5-cent fee for single-use bags.
The measure is in limbo after Gov. Phil Murphy used a line-item veto to remove any language related to the proposed bag fees from the state budget on Monday. It is unclear how Murphy views the proposed fees, but environmental groups want him to ditch the bill in favor of stricter regulations.
News Article • 7/3/2018 • by Tom Johnson at NJ Spotlight
It was only a single line-item veto in a $37.4 billion state budget, but it has fueled speculation over the fate of a controversial bill to impose a nickel fee on single use carry-out bags.
Gov. Phil Murphy blocked the diversion of funds targeted for lead abatement projects in the budget, a move welcomed by environmental and other advocates who want to see more resources dedicated to eliminating childhood exposure to lead.
In approving a state spending plan for the new fiscal year, the governor eliminated language that would have shifted at least $23 million raised by fees on plastic and paper bags to the general budget instead of lead programs as originally intended.
News Article • 7/2/2018 • by Scott Fallon at NorthJersey.com
Gov. Phil Murphy deleted language from the state's $37.4 billion budget Sunday that would have raised millions from a proposed 5-cent fee on plastic supermarket bags, signaling that he may support more stringent restrictions, including a ban.
Murphy has about 30 days left to decide the fate of the 5-cent fee bill, passed hurriedly by the Legislature last month as lawmakers were scrambling to find new revenue sources. Dan Bryan, a spokesman for Murphy, said Monday that no final decision has been made regarding the bill.
But environmentalists and some state lawmakers are urging Murphy, a Democrat, to support a temporary fee for a few years followed by an outright ban by vetoing the bill or rewriting it as part of a conditional veto. They want a bag law based on California's measure that bans plastic bags and charges a 10-cent fee on paper bags.
"The changes that need to be made to this bill are really critical; otherwise we're not doing much to solve the problem," said Ed Potosnak, executive director of the New Jersey League of Conservation Voters. "Nobody likes to change their habits, but this is a direction we need to go in. Just look at how much plastic is on your beaches and in your parks."
News Article • 6/18/2018 • by Ed Potosnak and Chris Sturm at Asbury Park Press
The issuance last week of 47 advisories of high levels of fecal bacteria along New Jersey's beaches highlights an important issue facing our state: We need a permanent way to address our polluted runoff problem.
News Article • 6/15/2018 • by Phil Gregory at WBGO
Lead that gets into drinking water from old water pipes can cause serious health problems.
New Jersey lawmakers are considering legislation that would help assess the extent of that hazard.
A bill advanced by an Assembly committee would require public water systems to submit a list of lead service lines in their distribution system to the Department of Environmental Protection.
Chris Sturm with New Jersey Future says that’s an important step.
“It would set New Jersey communities on the path to understanding where those lead service lines are, cost estimates for how to replace them. It would also empower homeowners to know what they’re dealing with.”
Henry Gajda with the New Jersey League of Conservation Voters also supports the measure.
News Article • 6/7/2018
Washington, D.C. — At its annual dinner in the nation’s capital Wednesday night, the League of Conservation Voters (LCV) presented awards to actor and activist Adrian Grenier, conservationist and philanthropist Hansjorg Wyss, and the New Jersey League of Conservation Voters.
News Article • 6/4/2018 • by Michelle Brunetti at Press of Atlantic City
A hazardous waste processor will not be able to quickly reopen in Salem County after Gov. Phil Murphy conditionally vetoed a bill that would have exempted it from new permit requirements.
“The improvements the Governor made to the bill in his conditional veto will safeguard our clean drinking water, the Delaware River, and the fishing industries that rely on its health,” said Ed Potosnak, executive director of New Jersey League of Conservation Voters.