Municipal master plans would now be required to include strategies concerning energy efficiency, storm resiliency and environmental protection under a bill sponsored by Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman and advanced by the Senate Environment and Energy Committee. The strategy required under the bill would be located within the land use section of the master plan.
“Every municipality should be actively working to improve energy efficiency and shore up our environmental infrastructure,” Senator Bateman (R-16) said. “As the most densely populated state in the nation, we have to be aggressive in our efforts to protect the environment. Requiring every master plan to address sustainability issues will ensure each community is doing their part to safeguard natural resources for the next generation.”
— Senator Kip Bateman (@KipBateman) January 31, 2017
Senator Bateman’s bill, S-2873, requires that the land use element of a municipal master plan include a statement of strategy concerning: smart growth, including potential locations for the installation of electric vehicle charging stations; storm resiliency with respect to energy supply, flood-prone areas, and environmental infrastructure; and environmental sustainability.
The land use element of a master plan is adopted by local boards that are intimately involved with local land use issues, such as a planning board.
“Placing this strategy within the land use section of the master plan is critical to ensuring sustainability improvements are addressed in a practical and effective manner, by the people who have the knowledge and experience to do so,” Senator Bateman added.
S-2873 now heads to the Senate floor for a vote. If signed into law, the legislation would take effect immediately.