Section: Findings, declarations
1. The Legislature finds and declares that:
a. It is within the public interest to promote economic growth, to encourage and foster the development and establishment of new industries and businesses, to champion and expedite the expansion, modernization and diversification of existing businesses, corporations and establishments, and to attract and facilitate the siting and relocation of employers who will provide highly skilled and high-paying employment opportunities for the citizens of this State;
b. While the quality of New Jersey's environment is paramount to the health and well-being of the residents of this State, it is essential to counter forcefully those who preach the erroneous dogma that our citizens must choose between the environment and economic prosperity and growth;
c. The Department of Environmental Protection must play a central role in educating the public that a clean environment and economic prosperity and growth are not only compatible, but interdependent;
d. To dispel the illusion that those two worthy objectives are inherently incompatible, the Department of Environmental Protection should immediately revise its current policies and procedures for reviewing permit applications, eliminating unduly long and burdensome practices which hinder timely investment, severely inhibit the availability of necessary capital, retard economic growth and development, frustrate new business ventures, and obstruct the creation of new employment opportunities for the citizens of this State;
e. It is, therefore, altogether fitting and proper, and within the public interest, to direct the Department of Environmental Protection to adopt new policies and procedures which will facilitate and expedite the review of permit applications and to that end to institute a system by which permit application fees will be paid incrementally based upon the department's completion of its duties and responsibilities at specific stages of the application review process.
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