Meetings slated on recommendations by Coastal Zone advisory committee

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Delaware’s Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) will hold three public open houses in February, seeking feedback on preliminary recommendations made by the Coastal Zone Conversion Permit Act Regulatory Advisory Committee.

The Coastal Zone Conversion Permit Act governing the Delaware River and Bay requires DNREC to develop and put into effect regulations for the redevelopment of 14 heavy industry sites in Delaware’s Coastal Zone by Oct. 1, 2019. The Regulatory Advisory Committee was convened by DNREC in June 2018 to provide recommendations regarding the regulations.

Previously, development was restricted to existing plants. Over the years, a number of industrial plants in the Coastal Zone have been shuttered, with the sites essentially closed to redevelopment.

The legislation continues to be opposed by some environmental activists who believe no new industry should be located in the zone. fh

The open houses will present the committee’s preliminary recommendations for the public to review and provide comment. The open houses will be held from 5-8 p.m. on these dates:

  • Monday, Feb. 25, Claymont Community Center, 3301 Green Street, Claymont, DE 19703
  • Tuesday, Feb. 26, Delaware City Fire Hall, 815 5th Street, Delaware City, DE 19706
  • Wednesday, Feb. 27, Elbert Palmer Elementary School, 1210 Lobdell Street, Wilmington, DE 19801

Members of the public may attend at any point and for any length of time during the open houses.

Each open house will follow the same format. Attendees will be able to view a video presentation about the legislative changes and the process leading to the Regulatory Advisory Committee’s preliminary recommendations.

Attendees will also be able to walk around and visit various informational booths that explain the different aspects of the committee’s preliminary recommendations. Attendees will be able to provide input on feedback forms. The forms will be available at the workshop as well as on DNREC’s website prior to the events.

Public input gathered at the workshops will be compiled by the Consensus Building Institute (CBI), a non-profit organization that has facilitated the Regulatory Advisory Committee’s meetings. CBI will compile all public input into a report and provide the report to the Committee for its consideration before finalizing its recommendations to DNREC. DNREC will also make the report available for the public to view on its website.

For more information on the Coastal Zone Conversion Permit Act Regulatory Advisory Committee, visit www.de.gov/czcparac. To receive updates on the regulatory process for developing conversion permits, you can subscribe to the Coastal Zone Act email listserv by sending a blank email to join-dnrec_coastal_zone@lists.state.de.us.

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