Working for Smart Growth:
More Livable Places and Open Spaces


NJ Appleseed: Embedding Sustainable Development & Land Use into Public Policy

March 23, 2015
8:15 am

Where: Seton Hall University School of Law – Newark, NJ

Development in New Jersey is a hot-button issue, with strong feelings on both sides. Some believe it is out of control, and cite strip malls springing up almost overnight, and mass numbers of townhomes covering the once-pristine suburban hillsides. Others argue that development brings jobs and other tangible benefits, and is key to the State’s economic future. Like it or not, development in New Jersey is here to stay. But can development be a force for good? Can we lessen the environmental impact, or better yet, reinforce overall sustainability and resiliency in New Jersey communities, create more affordable homes for our citizens, and stabilize neighborhoods?

At this New Jersey Appleseed Public Policy Forum we will explore efficient and ethical land use policies, discuss private sector concerns and ways to address opposition, focus on how implementing ‘green’ can impact the bottom line, look at the ways that affordable housing can help create sustainable, safe, and strong communities, and examine strategies to reduce risk from new policies, among other important issues.

Registration is required.


8:15 am – 9:00 am: Breakfast and Registration

9:00 am – 9:15 am: Opening Remarks

9:15 am – 10:15 am: Opening Keynote Panel:  Benchmarking Existing Efficient & Ethical Land Use Policies that Safeguard a Community:  Rebuild; Redesign; Resiliency & Environmental Justice

  • Rachel Godsil, Eleanor Bontecou Professor of Law, Seton Hall University, School of Law
  • Mayor Steven M. Fulop, City of Jersey City
  • Dr. Nicky Sheats, Director, Center for the Urban Environment, John S. Watson Institute for Public Policy, Thomas Edison State College
  • Matthew Testa, Director of Construction, Bijou Properties

10:15 am – 11:15 am: Policy & Common Sense:  Incorporating Environmental Impact Statements  & Health Impact Assessments into New Jersey’s Land Law

  • Stephanie Greenwood, Program Officer, Victoria Foundation and Mayor’s Policy Adviser on Sustainability, City of Newark
  • Jeanne Herb, Associate Director, Environmental Analysis and Communications Group, Edward J. Blounstein School of Planning and Public Policy, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
  • Aaron Kleinbaum, Esq., Legal Director, Eastern Environmental Law Center
  • Lisa Swain, Council Member, Borough of Fair Lawn

11:15 am – 11:30 am: Refreshment Break

11:30 am – 12:30 pm: It’s the Economy Stupid: Private Sector Concerns & How Implementing ‘Green’ Impacts the Bottom Line

  • Jonathan Cloud, Executive Director, New Jersey PACE
  • Jeana Wirtenberg, Ph.D., President & CEO, Transitioning to Green

12:30 pm – 1:30 pm: Buffet Lunch

1:30 pm – 2:30 pm: Demographics: The Elephant in the Room – What Role Does Affordable Housing Play in Creating Sustainable, Safe & Strong Communities

  • David D. Troutt, Professor of Law and Director, Rutgers Center on Law in Metropolitan Equity
  • Rev. Eric Dobson, Staff Outreach Coordinator, Fair Share Housing Center
  • Ron Shiffman, Professor, Pratt Institute Graduate School of Architecture, and Founder, Pratt Center for Community Development

2:30 pm – 2:45 pm: Refreshment Break

2:45 pm – 3:45 pm: Including the Public in Policy Decisions & Getting Out of the Back Room:  How to Address Opposition or Support to New Development with Transparency

  • Ron Hine, Executive Dirctor, Fund for a Better Waterfront
  • Damon Rich, Planning Director & Chief Urban Designer, City of Newark
  • Renee Steinhagen, Executive Director, New Jersey Appleseed Public Interest Law Center

3:45 pm – 4:45 pm: New Policy Mine Fields: Are there Policies that Expose a Municipality to Legal Exposure & What Precautions Can Reduce those Risks?

  • James Doyle, Team Leader – New York/Caribbean Superfund Branch; Office of Regional Counsel, USEPA Region 2 Office, New York, United States Environmental Protection Agency

4:45 pm: Conference Adjourns

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