New Jersey Statutes - Title 58 Waters and Water Supply - 58:10A-49.1 Actions by commissioner.
3. a. Whenever the Commissioner of Environmental Protection finds that a person has intentionally dumped material into the ocean waters within the jurisdiction of this State, or into the waters outside the jurisdiction of this State, which material enters the ocean waters within the jurisdiction of this State, the commissioner shall:
(1) bring a civil action in accordance with subsection b. of this section;
(2) levy a civil administrative penalty in accordance with subsection c. of this section;
(3) bring an action for a civil penalty in accordance with subsection d. of this section; or
(4) petition the Attorney General to bring a criminal action in accordance with section 3 of P.L.1988, c.61 (C.58:10A-49).
Pursuit of any of the remedies specified under this section shall not preclude the seeking of any other remedy specified.
b. The commissioner may institute an action or proceeding in the Superior Court for injunctive and other relief, including the appointment of a receiver for any violation of P.L.1988, c.61 (C.58:10A-47 et seq.), or of any rule or regulation adopted pursuant thereto, and the court may proceed in the action in a summary manner. In any such proceeding the court may grant temporary or interlocutory relief.
Such relief may include, singly or in combination:
(1) a temporary or permanent injunction;
(2) assessment of the violator for the costs of any investigation, inspection, or monitoring survey that led to the establishment of the violation, and for the reasonable costs of preparing and litigating the case under this subsection;
(3) assessment of the violator for any cost incurred by the State in removing, correcting, or terminating the adverse effects upon environmental quality or public health resulting from any violation of P.L.1988, c.61 (C.58:10A-47 et seq.), or any rule or regulation adopted pursuant thereto, for which the action under this subsection may have been brought;
(4) assessment against the violator of compensatory damages for any loss or destruction of wildlife, fish or aquatic life, and for any other actual damages caused by any violation of P.L.1988, c.61 (C.58:10A-47 et seq.), or any rule or regulation adopted pursuant thereto, for which the action under this subsection may have been brought; and
(5) assessment against the violator of the actual amount of any economic benefits accruing to the violator from a violation. Economic benefits may include the amount of any savings realized from avoided capital or noncapital costs resulting from the violation; the return earned or that may be earned on the amount of avoided costs; any benefits accruing to the violator as a result of a competitive market advantage enjoyed by reason of the violation; or any other benefits resulting from the violation.
Assessments under this subsection shall be paid to the State Treasurer, except that compensatory damages may be paid by specific order of the court to any persons who have been aggrieved by the violation.
c. The commissioner may assess a civil administrative penalty of not more than $100,000 for each violation. Each day that a violation continues shall constitute an additional, separate, and distinct offense. No assessment may be levied pursuant to this section until after the violator has been notified by certified mail or personal service. The notice shall include a reference to the section of the statute, rule, regulation, or order violated, a concise statement of the facts alleged to constitute a violation, a statement of the amount of the civil administrative penalties to be imposed, and a statement of the party's right to a hearing. The ordered party shall have 20 calendar days from receipt of the notice within which to deliver to the commissioner a written request for a hearing. After the hearing and upon finding that a violation has occurred, the commissioner may issue a final order after assessing the amount of the fine specified in the notice. If no hearing is requested, the notice shall become a final order after the expiration of the 20-day period. Payment of the assessment is due when a final order is issued or the notice becomes a final order. The authority to levy a civil administrative penalty is in addition to all other enforcement provisions in P.L.1988, c.61 (C.58:10A-47 et seq.), and the payment of any assessment shall not be deemed to affect the availability of any other enforcement provisions in connection with the violation for which the assessment is levied.
d. A person who violates P.L.1988, c.61 (C.58:10A-47 et seq.), or any rule or regulation adopted pursuant thereto, shall be liable for a penalty of not more than $100,000 per day for each violation, to be collected in a civil action commenced by the Commissioner of Environmental Protection.
A person who violates a court order issued pursuant to subsection b. of this section or who fails to pay an administrative assessment in full pursuant to subsection c. of this section is subject upon order of a court to a civil penalty not to exceed $100,000 per day for each violation.
Any penalty imposed pursuant to this subsection may be collected, with costs, in a summary proceeding pursuant to the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999," P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.). The Superior Court and the municipal court shall have jurisdiction to enforce the provisions of the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999" in connection with P.L.1988, c.61 (C.58:10A-47 et seq.).
L.2009, c.282, s.3.
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Last modified: February 14, 2012