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Apply for a land use permit

Development projects, such as subdivisions, site plans, and variances, require a land use permit. This is sometimes referred to as the entitlement process.

Learn about land use permits and the public hearing review process.

Need to know

  • Costs vary based on the complexity of the project. You'll need to pay an initial deposit to cover review, document preparation, and inspections.
  • Most development projects require public hearings.
  • For certain projects you need entitlements before you are allowed to get building permits and start construction.

Before you start

Start by researching the rules and regulations to learn what's allowed on the property:

The proposed project or land use change should be compatible with surrounding areas. We recommend you meet with nearby neighbors and people who may be affected by the change. Discuss the proposed change and learn if they have concerns.

Contact local utilities and other agencies to see if other requirements will be necessary.

Steps

1. Reach out to us and discuss your project.

This is an optional, but recommended step. Preliminary review often improves the quality of the application. We can:

  • Give you early feedback
  • Help identify potential problems
  • Let you know about additional documents you need to submit with your application

2. Create your plans and prepare materials

Find the application you need and review the checklist to understand what you need to include with your application.

3. Complete and submit your application

Make sure to include all the required items in the application checklist. Incomplete, inaccurate, and unorganized applications may result in delays.

Don't forget to complete the request form for a list of property owners within 200 feet. You will need this later in the process.

4. Pay fees and deposit

You can pay by check or with cash (exact change).

What's next

Completeness review

After we receive your application, we will schedule a meeting to review it. We encourage you to attend, but you aren't required. These meetings are generally scheduled on Wednesdays and are in the Mayor's Office.

During this meeting we will determine if your application is administratively complete or incomplete. By law, we need to do this within 45 days.

If your application is deemed incomplete, we will send you a notice explaining what is missing. You will have the opportunity to revise and resubmit your application. Once your application is resubmitted, another completeness review will be scheduled.

If your application is deemed complete it will be placed on the next available Board agenda for a public hearing.

Public notice

Once you get a confirmation of the date that your application will be heard, you need to notify all property owners within 200 feet of your property by certified mail. You need to do this at least 10 days before the date of the hearing, not including the hearing date.

As an alternative, you can give notice by hand delivering it to the property owner. You cannot hand deliver to a tenant. If you go this route, you need to give the property owner a copy and ask them to sign and date a copy for you to keep.

You also need to post a notice in the Courier News. Contact the legal department well in advance of your hearing to be certain they can accommodate you. The notice in the newspaper must appear at least 10 days before the date of the hearing, not including the hearing date.

At least 3 days before the hearing you need to provide to the Board Secretary with:

  • Affidavit of Service
  • Copy of the notice used to serve the property owners
  • Copy of the list of property owners within 200 feet
  • Original (not copies) of the certified mail receipts stamped by the USPS
  • Affidavit of publication from the newspaper

If you decided to provide personal service the copies with original signatures must be submitted instead of the receipts from the USPS.

Get help

Jenna LaRusso
Planning Board & Zoning Board Secretary

(908) 725-2300
ext. 1964
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