Hearings start on new coastal building rules in New Jersey - New York News

Hearings start on new coastal building rules in New Jersey

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By WAYNE PARRY | AP

LONG BRANCH, N.J. (AP) -- A public hearing is being held on the state Environmental Protection Department's proposed new rules that would make it easier for new or expanded development along the Jersey shore and the state's urban waterways.

The state says it's acting to streamline regulations and cut red tape while maintaining environmental protections.

But some environmentalists say the rules are a gift to developers and will place more New Jerseyans in harm's way during future storms, including major ones like Superstorm Sandy.

Wednesday's hearing is in Long Branch, followed by one in Trenton on Thursday, and one in Tuckerton next month.

The rules would make it easier to build or expand marinas and add restaurants to them, and make it easier to build one or two-family homes in coastal areas.

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