Senator Steven Oroho said a new executive order signed by Governor Phil Murphy in conjunction with the release of his new Energy Master Plan will lead to increased uncertainty for both businesses and families.
“We’re already seeing an exodus from New Jersey due to the high cost of living and doing business here,” said Oroho. “Now the governor wants to give the DEP another reason to deny permits that are already difficult to obtain. Ask anybody in the Highlands Region how many years it takes to get a project approved if they are lucky enough to get approval at all. Who would consider trying to build anything in New Jersey going forward with yet another impossible hoop to jump through?”
The Energy Master Plan unveiled by Governor Murphy today calls for a phase-out of natural gas and a transformation of New Jersey’s energy supply to 100% renewable sources by 2050.
Further, the governor signed Executive Order 100 today which calls for the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection to integrate “climate change considerations, such as sea level rise, into its regulatory and permitting programs, including but not limited to, land use permitting, water supply, stormwater and wastewater permitting and planning, air quality, and solid waste and site remediation permitting.”
“There’s no type of development that will escape Governor Murphy’s ability to withhold permits under opaque ‘climate change considerations,'” said Oroho. “He could use that language to block virtually any infrastructure improvement, home construction, or commercial development. It’s a plan that would make big government in New Jersey more powerful and intrusive than it already is.”
Oroho, who serves as the Senate Republican Budget Officer and as a member of the Senate Economic Growth Committee, warned that the governor’s proposal will further deepen New Jersey’s crisis of affordability.
“New Jerseyans are struggling with the highest property taxes and some of the highest business and income taxes in the nation,” Oroho said. “Instead of offering relief, the governor’s energy plan will only add fuel to the fire and push more New Jerseyans to states like Pennsylvania and Florida that have rational fiscal and energy policies that their residents can afford.”