Planning and Zoning

Continuing Education Session - September 29, 2022

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CGS Extends Certificate Renewal Deadlines 

Rutgers Center for Government Services recognizes the changing needs, shifting priorities and growing personal and professional concerns of our community during the COVID-19 pandemic.  As a result, we have implemented temporary changes in the Planning & Zoning certificate renewal process.  This applies to individuals holding Rutgers issued Planning/Zoning Board Secretary, Zoning Official, and Land Use Administrator certificate(s).  Due to potential challenges in completing the required continuing education training at this time, Planning & Zoning certificate holders are granted a 12 month extension period beyond their renewal date.  Please contact Priscilla Hamilton at prisc@docs.rutgers.edu if you require more information.

Course Schedule

Introduction to Planning and Zoning Administration

Students are required to obtain the following materials for class:

  1. New Jersey Zoning & Land Use Administration

by Cox and Koenig

Course Code Dates Time Instructor Fee Location
PZ-3301-FA22-1
9/30, 10/7, 10/14^
All class sessions are live.
9am-4pm and
9am-2pm^
Ilene Cutroneo, Michael
Irene, Christine Cofone
$543
Online Zoom
 
         

Financial and records management for Planning & zoning offices

Students are required to obtain the following materials for class:

  1. Calculator

     by Cox and Koenig

Course Code Dates Time Instructor Fee Location
PZ-3302-FA22-1
10/28
All class sessions are live.
9am-4pm
Ilene Cutroneo
$205
Online Zoom
 

 

understanding plans: site plan and subdivision review for administrative officers and board secretaries

Students are required to obtain the following materials for class:

  1. The Complete Book of Development Definitions

      by Moskowitz, Lindbloom, Listokin, Preiss, Merriam

  2. Engineers Scale

Course Code Dates Time Instructor Fee Location
PZ-3303-FA22-1
11/4, 11/10^
All class sessions are live.
9am-4pm and
9am-1pm^
Bonnie Imposimato,
Elizabeth Waterbury
$361
Online Zoom

 

introduction to zoning administration & enforcement

Students are required to obtain the following materials for class:
  1. New Jersey Zoning & Land Use Administration

by Cox and Koenig

  1. The Complete Book of Development Definitions

by Moskowitz, Lindbloom, Listokin, Preiss, Merriam

  1. A copy of their municipal zoning ordinance
Course Code Dates Time Instructor Fee Location
PZ-3304-FA22-1
9/16, 9/23, 9/30
All class sessions are live.
9am-4pm
Mike Hafner, Jameson
Van Eck
$634
Online Zoom

 

understanding plans: site plan and subdivision review for zoning officials

Students are required to obtain the following materials for class:
  1. Engineers Scale
  2. Architects Scale
  3. A copy of their municipal zoning ordinance
Course Code Dates Time Instructor Fee Location
PZ-3305-FA22-1
10/14, 10/21^
All class sessions are live.
9am-4pm and
9am-1pm^
Michael Proietti,
Elizabeth Waterbury
$361
Online Zoom

 

Zoning administration & Enforcement II

Students are required to obtain the following materials for class:
  1. A copy of their municipal zoning ordinance
  2. New Jersey Zoning & Land Use Administration
      by Cox and Koenig
Course Code Dates Time Instructor Fee Location
PZ-3306-FA22-1
10/28, 11/4, 11/10^
All class sessions are live.
9am-4pm and
9am-12pm^
Christa Anderson, Rick
Fernandez, Dennis Galvin
$522
Online Zoom

 

land use for board members

Students are required to obtain the following materials for class:
  1. Municipal Land Use Law
Course Code Dates Time Instructor Fee Location
PZ-3307-FA22-1
9/24
All class sessions are live.
9am-4pm
Jessica Caldwell,
Tom Molica
$231
Online Zoom
PZ-3307-FA22-2
10/22
All class sessions are live.
9am-4pm
Jessica Caldwell,
Tom Molica
$231
Online Zoom

 

NJAPZA SCHOLARSHIPS

The New Jersey Association of Planning & Zoning Administrators (NJAPZA) offers scholarship opportunities for students pursuing their Planning/Zoning Board Secretary or Zoning Official certifications.  Please visit http://www.njapza.org/ and select "Scholarships" on the top banner for more information.

 

OVERVIEW

​In cooperation with the New Jersey Association of Planning and Zoning Administrators, the Center for Government Services at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, offers two certificate programs:

  • Planning and Zoning Administration
  • Zoning Administration and Enforcement

Also, as a member of the Partners for Municipal Land Use Education, CGS offers a six-hour course for planning and zoning board members:

  • Land Use for Board Members

Course Descriptions

 

PLANNING AND ZONING ADMINISTRATION

This series of courses is intended to meet the educational needs of those municipal employees who are designated administrative officers in accordance with the New Jersey Municipal Land Use Law, N.J.S.A. 40:55D-1 et seq., and secretaries to planning boards and zoning boards of adjustment.  Those who attain a passing grade in all three courses are eligible to apply for the Board Secretary certificate for a period of three years from the date the student successfully completed the last class.  The application form is available in the Downloads box to the right.

Introduction to Planning and Zoning Administration 

16 Hours
This course offers a comprehensive overview of basic administrative procedures for planning and zoning support staff. Discussions cover the duties of each board, the legal responsibilities of the administrative officer, and such practical matters as the preparation of agendas and minutes, notice requirements, and the management of escrow accounts. A written examination is given at the conclusion of the course.

Financial and Records Management for Planning and Zoning Offices

6 Hours
Prerequisite: Introduction to Planning and Zoning Administration
In this seminar, both the financial and record-keeping aspects of the board secretary’s job are explained. The morning portion focuses on traditional records management topics. Practical advice on file management is given, and state records retention and disposal requirements are reviewed. The second half of the seminar emphasizes escrow account administration in the context of the application review process. Other financial management topics include budget preparation and administration, application fees, and post-approval guarantees and inspection fees. A written examination is given at the conclusion of the course.

Understanding Plans: Site Plan and Subdivision Review for Administrative Officers and Board Secretaries

10 Hours
Prerequisite: Financial and Records Management for Planning and Zoning Offices
In this course, the administrative officer and board secretary are exposed to some of the technical aspects of plan review. The administrative processing requirements for applications are discussed. Planning and engineering terminology is explained, and the symbols for various physical features and design elements are identified. Classroom exercises offer opportunities to become familiar with various types of plans and to review plans for completeness. A written examination is given at the conclusion of the course.

ZONING ADMINISTRATION AND ENFORCEMENT

This series of courses is intended to meet the educational needs of those municipal employees who serve as zoning officers or zoning officials in accordance with the New Jersey Municipal Land Use Law, N.J.S.A. 40:55D-1 et seq., and who have responsibility for enforcing local zoning ordinances.  Those who attain a passing grade in all three courses are eligible to apply for the Zoning Official certificate for a period of three years from the date the student successfully completed the last class.  The application form is available in the Downloads box to the right.

Introduction to Zoning Administration and Enforcement 

18 Hours
This course focuses on the technical knowledge and skills necessary for an individual to effectively interpret and enforce a municipal zoning ordinance. Emphasis is placed on the practical aspects of the job, including on-site inspections and compliance options. An introduction to the Municipal Land Use Law is provided, and the content and structure of zoning ordinances are thoroughly discussed. A written examination at the conclusion of the course includes both in-class and take-home components.

Understanding Plans: Site Plan and Subdivision Review for Zoning Officials

10 Hours
Prerequisite: Introduction to Zoning Administration and Enforcement
In this seminar, the zoning official is exposed to some of the technical aspects of plan review. The administrative processing requirements for applications are discussed. Planning and engineering terminology is explained, and the symbols for various physical features and design elements are identified. Classroom exercises offer opportunities to become familiar with surveys, site plan, and subdivision drawings; to review plans for completeness; and to learn how conditions of approval are enforced. A written examination is given at the conclusion of the course.

Zoning Administration and Enforcement II

15 Hours
Prerequisite: Understanding Plans: Site Plan and Subdivision Review for Zoning Officials
The third course in the series builds on the first two. Students are taught zoning case law, advanced administrative and investigative techniques, and communication skills. Significant zoning-related court cases are reviewed, and students learn how to perform such tasks as writing reports and conducting survey inspections. Homework assignments, case studies, and other classroom exercises are used extensively. A written examination is given at the conclusion of the course.

Land Use for Board Members

In 2005 the New Jersey State Legislature enacted N.J.S.A. 40:55D-23.3 and 23.4, which require that members of municipal planning boards, zoning boards of adjustment, and combined boards successfully complete a basic training course within 18 months of their appointment. The statute and implementing regulations call for five hours of instruction offered by course providers approved by the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs. For more information about the requirements, go to the Planning/Zoning Education page on the DCA website.

With over sixty years of experience in training New Jersey officials, the Center for Government Services understands the demands placed on board members. Now, CGS — as a member of the Partners for Municipal Land Use Education — is offering a six-hour course for planning and zoning board members. The partners who helped develop the course are:

  • Rutgers Center for Government Services
  • The Municipal Land Use Center at the College of New Jersey
  • New Jersey Future
  • New Jersey Chapter of the American Planning Association
  • New Jersey Association of Planning and Zoning Administrators
 
This course satisfies the requirements of the "Basic Course in Land Use Law and Planning" Training Program required pursuant to P.L. 2005, c. 133 and has been approved by the Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs.
 
 

Certification

Upon successful completion of the Planning and Zoning Administration program, a student may apply for a planning board/zoning board secretary certificate, which must be renewed every five (5) years. Upon successful completion of the Zoning Administration and Enforcement program, a student may apply for a zoning official certificate, which also must be renewed every five (5) years. Board Secretary and Zoning Official certificate applications are available in the Downloads box.

Students with an active Planning/Zoning Board Secretary certificate who are also interested in obtaining their Zoning Official certificate must apply to CGS upon their successful completion of Introduction to Zoning Administration & Enforcement and Zoning Administration & Enforcement 2.  The Understanding Plans course completed in the Board Secretary program will apply to the required coursework to obtain their second certificate.

Students with an active Zoning Official certificate who are also interested in obtaining their Planning/Zoning Board Secretary certificate must apply to CGS upon their successful completion of Introduction to Planning & Zoning Administration and Financial & Records Management.  The Understanding Plans course completed in the Zoning Official program will apply to the required coursework to obtain their second certificate.

Continuing Education

In order to maintain and renew a Board Secretary certificate, certificate holders must accrue fifteen (15) hours of continuing education related to land use and/or general administration.  Those who hold the Zoning Official certificate must accrue twenty (20) hours of continuing education, and those who are awarded the Land Use Administrator designation must accrue thirty (30) hours of continuing education every five (5) years in order to renew the certificate.

It is the responsibility of the certificate holders to keep track of their renewal credits and apply for renewal at the appropriate time. If a certificate is not renewed, it expires. Renewal applications are available on this website in the Downloads box.

Both the Center for Government Services and the New Jersey Association of Planning and Zoning Administrators offer continuing education seminars that give certificate holders the opportunity to accrue the necessary hours. CE credits toward certificate renewal is automatically awarded to those who attend the "Current Issues in Planning and Zoning" series, co-sponsored by CGS and NJAPZA. Credit is also approved by Rutgers for relevant seminars offered by a variety of organizations including the New Jersey State League of Municipalities, New Jersey Future, the New Jersey Chapter of the American Planning Association, and New Jersey Planning Officials.

Conference

The Center for Government Services co-sponsors an annual Planning and Zoning Continuing Education Conference with the New Jersey Association of Planning and Zoning Administrators. Conference information will be posted here as details are finalized.

Course Manuals

Land Use Administration for New Jersey Municipalities (2019)

This 138 page manual, developed by the Center for Government Services and the New Jersey Association of Planning and Zoning Administrators, covers the development applications, review process, and financial practices for land use offices, public meeting protocol, and administrative actions following board decisions, among other topics.  Supplementing its seven chapters are extensive appendices containing selected state laws, state guidance documents, and model forms and checklists that municipalities can adapt.

Planning and Zoning in New Jersey (2013)

This manual offers an overview of New Jersey’s planning system, checklists for subdivision and site plan reviews, tips on site visits and managing public meetings, and analyses of variance criteria. It also gives guidance on master plan updates and board governance, summaries of state ethics and open public meetings laws, and an introduction to smart growth principles and redevelopment.

Zoning Administration & Enforcement in New Jersey (2014)

This manual provides insight on the technical knowledge and skills necessary for municipal zoning officials to effectively interpret and enforce zoning ordinances.  Emphasis is placed on the practical aspects of the job, including on-site inspections, compliance options, and administrative procedures.

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