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General News

02/12/2021   LEAP Deadline Reminder
02/11/2021   FAST Digital Signature
01/22/2021   Local Finance Notice 2020-14R
12/31/2020   Division of Local Government Services' Quarterly Newsletter
11/23/2020   Local Finance Board COVID-19 Special Emergency Application
11/17/2020   LGEF Grant Program Reimbursement Filing Requirements
11/17/2020   New HMFA's Housing Resource Center Requirements
11/13/2020   Remote Meeting Rules-Comment Period Expires November 18
11/09/2020   LGEF Grant Submission Reminder
11/06/2020   Executive Order 190
10/20/2020   Remote Public Meetings-Solicitation of Comment on Regulations
10/07/2020   EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR - MUNICIPAL UTILITIES AUTHORITY
09/28/2020   Division of Local Government Services' Quarterly Newsletter
08/25/2020   Rutgers University Center for Government Services
08/21/2020   New LFN-Federal Debarment and Consequences-Public Works Contracts
08/06/2020   Re-proposed Chapter Readoption - N.J.A.C. 5:31 (Local Authorities)
07/10/2020   E-Procurement Rules
06/25/2020   Adjustment of Public Bidding Thresholds Effective July 1, 2020
06/19/2020   E-Procurement - Comment Period for Regulations
06/16/2020   COVID-19 Temporary Rental Assistance Program

LEAP Deadline Reminder - 02/12/2021

The Division of Local Government Services and New Jersey's Shared Services Czars remind all New Jersey local units that the deadline for submission of LEAP Challenge and LEAP Fellowship applications is rapidly approaching. Applications for these grants are due February 26, 2021. LEAP Implementation grant applications may be submitted at any time, and will be considered on a rolling basis, subject to availability of funding.

LEAP affords an unprecedented opportunity to incentivize shared services implementation across New Jersey's local government entities, advancing the mission of the Shared Services Program. LEAP facilitates exploring and establishing shared services by providing counties, municipalities, school districts, commissions, authorities and fire districts assistance for the study or implementation of promising shared services projects undertaken pursuant to the Uniform Shared Service and Consolidation Act.

Don't miss the opportunity to explore, collaborate and execute shared services initiatives that result in cost savings and operational efficiencies.

Detailed information about the LEAP program is available at: https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/programs/leapgrants.html

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FAST Digital Signature - 02/11/2021

FAST Digital Signature Process:

 

The Division of Local Government Services is pleased to announce that municipalities and counties will utilize a digital signature process to certify their CY 2021 Budgets through the Financial Automation Submission & Tracking (FAST) system.

Prior to submitting the Introduced and Adopted Budget through FAST, digital signatures of the Chief Financial Officer, Clerk to the Governing Body ("Clerk"), and Registered Municipal Accountant of record ("RMA") are required.

Please refer to the Division's Digital Signature User Guide at: https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/pdf/FAST_Budget_Digital_Signatures.pdf for further instructions on completing the digital signature process:

Municipalities and counties are required to use the updated 2020 Municipal and County Annual Financial Statement templates and 2021 Municipal and County Budget templates available at the Division's FAST webpage: https://nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/fast.html.

Completed template documents are required to be uploaded in FAST using the following naming conventions: <<municode>>_introbudget_2021, <<municode>>_adoptbudget_2021, and <<municode>>_afs_2020.

As a reminder, the governing body budget approval vote is required to be recorded prior to the Budget file upload, digital signatures and submission through FAST.

 

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Local Finance Notice 2020-14R - 01/22/2021

LFN 2020-14R replaces LFN 2020-14 issued on 6/24/2020.

Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:11-3(c) and 18A:18A-3(b), the State Treasurer has exercised her authority to adjust bid thresholds for contracting units subject to the Local Public Contracts Law and the Public School Contracts Law. These adjustments become effective on July 1, 2020. The maximum bid threshold has been increased from $40,000 to $44,000 for contracting units that have appointed a Qualified Purchasing Agent and avail themselves of the related higher bid threshold pursuant to N.J.S.A 40A:11-3 and 18A:18A-3.   Pursuant to N.J.S.A 52:15C-10(d), the Office of the State Comptroller, after consultation with the Department of the Treasury, has also exercised its statutory authority to adjust the threshold amounts for reporting set forth in N.J.S.A 52:15C-10 (a) and (b).

Please review Local Finance Notice 2020-14R, available at https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/lfns/20/2020-14R.pdf, for further information concerning the new public bidding thresholds and State Comptroller contract reporting thresholds. A listing of all contracting thresholds, including the current prevailing wage thresholds for municipal public works contracts, is available at: https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/programs/lpcl_docs/Contracting%20Threshold%20Tables.pdf

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Division of Local Government Services' Quarterly Newsletter - 12/31/2020

Please see enclosed the latest edition of the Division of Local Government Services quarterly newsletter, which provides programmatic updates, staff bios, and information about new initiatives, policies, and best practices.

Below is the link:

https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/hottopics/hottopics_docs/LGS_Newsletter_Dec_2020.pdf

 

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Local Finance Board COVID-19 Special Emergency Application - 11/23/2020

Local Finance Notice 2020-24, accessible at https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/lfns/20/2020-24.pdf, explains how local units, upon certification to and approval by the Division of Local Government Services, may be allowed to qualify a COVID-19 related operating deficit as a special emergency. A local unit that would experience substantial financial hardship by appropriating for the deferred charge over a six-year emergency period may seek Local Finance Board approval to make the appropriations over up to 10 years. The application and certification forms that must be used when seeking Board approval are available on the Local Finance Board webpage at https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/programs/lfb.html under the General Forms heading.

Please follow the Local Finance Board's application distribution process when submitting the application to the Board and its members. The addresses can be found at the following link: https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/programs/lfb_docs/lfbmembs.pdf.

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LGEF Grant Program Reimbursement Filing Requirements - 11/17/2020

A county or municipality qualifying for the Local Government Emergency Fund (LGEF) Program, upon the Division of Local Government Services approving its application, must make a separate request to the Division for reimbursement of eligible costs. The attached provides filing instructions that must be adhered to by each county and municipality seeking reimbursement under the Program. All Local Government Emergency Fund reimbursement requests must be submitted by no later than December 10, 2020. Strict adherence to this deadline is compelled by the December 30, 2020 expenditure deadline established within the CARES Act.

Detailed Information and filing requirements for the LGEF Program is available at: https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/programs/lgef.html

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New HMFA's Housing Resource Center Requirements - 11/17/2020

Pursuant to P.L. 2020, c.51, effective November 1, 2020, owners, developers, property managers and all other administrative entities responsible for the affirmative marketing of any affordable housing unit will be required to:

-             Post their units to the Housing Resource Center within one day of accepting or soliciting applications, if:

-             Units are being listed for the first time.

-             Existing units are expected to become available or

-            Applications for waitlist positions are being accepted.

-             Post a listing for a lottery, if they elect to hold one, to the Housing Resource Center at least 60 days prior to the lottery's occurrence.

-             Include a link to an online fillable PDF application form and information regarding how to request a paper application.

Upon complying with the above, the owner, developer, property manager or other administrative entity shall submit evidence of the postings to the administrative agent and municipal housing liaison, who is tasked with enforcing compliance with the law.

-             If the municipality fails to comply with the provisions of this law, the municipality is considered non-compliant with their affirmative marketing plan requirements.

-             To ensure the municipality can enforce the provisions of the law, they shall have the ability to fine noncompliant properties $5000 for a first offense, $10,000 for a second offense and $15,000 for each subsequent offense, if corrective action is not taken to rectify the noncompliance upon notification by the municipal housing liaison.

-             All funds generated by these fines are to be deposited into the municipality's affordable housing trust fund.

For more information, please visit the Housing Resource Center at www.nj.gov/njhrc/list .

There is also a recorded webinar available, which goes into detail on the new requirements and how to post a listing to the HRC.

Still have questions, please email HRC@njhmfa.gov.

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Remote Meeting Rules-Comment Period Expires November 18 - 11/13/2020

The Notice of Emergency Adoption and Concurrent Proposal for N.J.A.C. 5:39-1, the remote public meeting regulations for local public bodies, is posted on the DLGS Rules and Regulations webpage at https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/resources/rules_docs/R.2020%20d.110%20(52%20N.J.R.%201943(a)).pdf. Please be reminded that any comments shall be submitted to the Division in writing by November 18, 2020. Comments can be submitted via email to dlgs@dca.nj.gov with the subject heading "NJAC 5:39-1: Remote Meeting Protocol for Local Public Bodies".  

The concurrently promulgated emergency regulations remain in effect. Executive Order 127 allows emergency rules that would otherwise expire during the current public health emergency to be extended until 90 days following the end of the public health emergency. As such the remote public meeting rules, which would otherwise statutorily expire on November 22, will remain in effect until 90 days following the end of the public health emergency.

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LGEF Grant Submission Reminder - 11/09/2020

The Division of Local Government Services remind eligible counties and municipalities that the deadline for submission of Local Government Emergency Fund (LGEF) grant applications are due no later than November 10, 2020 and all reimbursement requests must be submitted by no later than December 10, 2020. Strict adherence to these deadlines is compelled by the December 30, 2020 expenditure deadline established within the CARES Act. Detailed information and filing requirements for the LGEF program is available at: https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/programs/lgef.html.

Notice sent to: Municipal CFOs; County CFOs; Freeholder Board Clerks; Municipal Clerks; Administrators/Managers

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Executive Order 190 - 11/06/2020

Executive Order 190, signed by the Governor on October 15, 2020, bars 1) shutting off water supply to residential accounts, or accounts primarily serving residential customers, due to nonpayment unless the shut off is necessary to prevent or ameliorate a risk to public health or safety; and 2) collecting fees and charges for late or otherwise untimely water payments or water supply service reconnections that have accrued, and will continue to accrue, during the Public Health Emergency declared in response to COVID-19.    

During the public health emergency, penalties or interest cannot be collected on late or otherwise delinquent water payments from residential accounts or accounts primarily serving residential customers (such as an apartment building where the landlord is billed). Neither can delinquent water charges, which have accrued before or during the Public Health Emergency declared in response to COVID-19, become part of the year-end penalty under N.J.S.A. 54:4-67. It does not matter whether the delinquency occurred before the public health emergency declaration on March 9, 2020, or while the public health emergency is ongoing. If any subsequent charges are accrued during the public health emergency, then a municipality or authority is prohibited from collection activities related to those charges. As a result, municipalities cannot bring delinquent water charges to tax sale for the remainder of the public health emergency.

Although collection activities on delinquent sewer/wastewater charges are not subject to the requirements of the Executive Order, municipalities with sewer utilities and authorities with wastewater operations are encouraged to be flexible and work with their customers on various payment options before pursuing collection activities during the public health emergency. For municipalities with combined water/sewer utilities and authorities with water and wastewater operations, please note that delinquent sewer charges may not be sent to tax sale if the billing structure does not permit the sewer charge to be separated from the water charge.

The full text of

Executive Order 190, signed by the Governor on October 15, 2020, bars 1) shutting off water supply to residential accounts, or accounts primarily serving residential customers, due to nonpayment unless the shut off is necessary to prevent or ameliorate a risk to public health or safety; and 2) collecting fees and charges for late or otherwise untimely water payments or water supply service reconnections that have accrued, and will continue to accrue, during the Public Health Emergency declared in response to COVID-19.    

During the public health emergency, penalties or interest cannot be collected on late or otherwise delinquent water payments from residential accounts or accounts primarily serving residential customers (such as an apartment building where the landlord is billed). Neither can delinquent water charges, which have accrued before or during the Public Health Emergency declared in response to COVID-19, become part of the year-end penalty under N.J.S.A. 54:4-67. It does not matter whether the delinquency occurred before the public health emergency declaration on March 9, 2020, or while the public health emergency is ongoing. If any subsequent charges are accrued during the public health emergency, then a municipality or authority is prohibited from collection activities related to those charges. As a result, municipalities cannot bring delinquent water charges to tax sale for the remainder of the public health emergency.

Although collection activities on delinquent sewer/wastewater charges are not subject to the requirements of the Executive Order, municipalities with sewer utilities and authorities with wastewater operations are encouraged to be flexible and work with their customers on various payment options before pursuing collection activities during the public health emergency. For municipalities with combined water/sewer utilities and authorities with water and wastewater operations, please note that delinquent sewer charges may not be sent to tax sale if the billing structure does not permit the sewer charge to be separated from the water charge.

The full text of Executive Order 190 can be found at https://nj.gov/infobank/eo/056murphy/pdf/EO-190.pdf. Municipalities and authorities to whom the Executive Order applies are encouraged to review the Order and consult legal counsel as needed.

 

Notice sent to: Tax Collectors; Municipal CFOs; Municipal Clerks; Authority Officials

can be found at https://nj.gov/infobank/eo/056murphy/pdf/EO-190.pdf. Municipalities and authorities to whom the Executive Order applies are encouraged to review the Order and consult legal counsel as needed.

 

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Remote Public Meetings-Solicitation of Comment on Regulations - 10/20/2020

The Notice of Emergency Adoption and Concurrent Proposal for N.J.A.C. 5:39-1, the remote public meeting regulations, has been published in the October 19, 2020 New Jersey Register and is posted on the DLGS Rules and Regulations webpage at https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/resources/rules_docs/R.2020%20d.110%20(52%20N.J.R.%201943(a)).pdf. The concurrently promulgated emergency regulations remain in effect.

Written comments on the proposal must be submitted by November 18, 2020, via email to dlgs@dca.nj.gov or by regular mail to:

Jason R. Martucci, Esq.

Division of Local Government Services

Department of Community Affairs

PO Box 803

Trenton, NJ 08625-0803

 

For comments submitted via email, please name the subject heading "NJAC 5:39-1: Remote Meeting Protocol for Local Public Bodies." E-mail submission is preferred. 

 

Notice sent to: Municipal Clerks; County Clerks; Freeholder Board Clerks; Authority Officials; Fire District Officials; DLGS Listserv

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EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR - MUNICIPAL UTILITIES AUTHORITY - 10/07/2020

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR - MUNICIPAL UTILITIES AUTHORITY. (AMENDED)The City of Atlantic City Municipal Utilities Authority (ACMUA) is seeking qualified candidates to serve as its full time Executive Director. Responsibilities include directing personnel to ensure optimal daily operation of the ACMUA, oversight of all maintenance and operations with supervisory personnel and unionized employees, budgeting, long range and strategic planning, public contracting and purchasing compliance, implementing policy decisions of the ACMUA Commissioners. Candidates should possess good supervisory, organizational and management skills. A Bachelor's degree is required to be considered for this position. Atlantic County and City of Atlantic City residents are encouraged to apply. Interested candidates should forward resumes to Andrew Weber, Esq. 24 Jazz Way, Mt. Laurel, NJ 08054 or email andy.weber@comcast.net. The deadline for receipt of resumes is extended to 12PM, October 26, 2020. All those who have previously applied for this position are not required to reapply and will be considered so long as they meet the minimum requirements set forth herein.

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Division of Local Government Services' Quarterly Newsletter - 09/28/2020

Below is the link for the latest edition of the Division of Local Government Services' quarterly newsletter, which provides programmatic updates, staff bios, and information about new initiatives, policies, and best practices.

https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/hottopics/hottopics_docs/LGS_Newsletter_Sept_%202020.pdf

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Rutgers University Center for Government Services - 08/25/2020

Rutgers University Center for Government Services, in cooperation with the New Jersey Association of Counties, is pleased to present an online certification program for county administrators and professional staff. This two-day Basic Certificate Program covers essential components of the administration of county government. Sessions on management challenges, public procurement, county fiscal affairs and ethics will provide an overview of important day-to-day issues and operations.

Instructed by experienced professionals in their respective fields, the sessions bring real-life applications and insight to the implementation of daily functions, operations and challenges. This program has been specifically designed to address the needs and interests of administrators, managers and administrative staff working in county government. The Division of Local Government Services, DCA has approved continuing education credits for CCPO, CCFO, CMFO, and QPA recertification's.

This two day, 12-hour online certificate program is scheduled on Fridays October 16 and October 23, 2020 from 9:00 am - 4:00 pm via WebEx. The cost is $670.00. The link to the webinar will be sent out after registration is completed. Please visit our website for registration information:   https://cgs.rutgers.edu/programs/countyadministrators

Olga Chaban, EdD

Sr. Program Coordinator

 

We Have Moved!

 

CENTER FOR GOVERNMENT SERVICES                                                            

Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

Lifelong Learning Center   3 Rutgers Plaza, 3rd Floor    

New Brunswick, NJ   08901

                                    

Ph: 848-932-4731  

F:   732-932-3586

http://www.cgs.rutgers.edu

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New LFN-Federal Debarment and Consequences-Public Works Contracts - 08/21/2020

Pursuant to P.L. 2019, c.406, a contractor that is debarred from contracting with a federal government agency, along with any affiliates of the debarred contractor, is prohibited from contracting for certain types of public work with any State or local government entity.   This prohibition applies to all entities subject to the Local Public Contracts Law or Public School Contracts Law, as well as to county colleges. Local Finance Notice 2020-18, available at https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/lfns/20/2020-18.pdf, discusses the requirements of the law in further detail and provides a model certification form for contractors to complete prior to contract award.

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Re-proposed Chapter Readoption - N.J.A.C. 5:31 (Local Authorities) - 08/06/2020

The Local Finance Board has reproposed the chapter readoption of N.J.A.C. 5:31, which contains regulations pertaining to local authorities and fire districts.  The reproposal contains a substantial number of new rules and amendments to the existing chapter.  The Notice of Proposal is available on our Rules and Regulations webpage at https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/resources/rules_docs/PRN%202020-071%20(52%20N.J.R.%201489(a)).pdf.  Please submit any comments in writing by October 2, 2020 either via email to dlgs@dca.nj.gov or by regular mail to:

Patricia Parkin McNamara, Executive Secretary

Local Finance Board

Department of Community Affairs

PO Box 803

Trenton, NJ 08625-0803

For comments submitted via email, please include the subject heading “N.J.A.C. 5:31 Reproposed Chapter Readoption.” 

 

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E-Procurement Rules - 07/10/2020

DLGS adopted Emergency regulations to allow local governments and school districts to utilize online platforms for procuring goods, services, power supply, and contracts for public works projects. These emergency regulations are being concurrently proposed for permanent adoption and have been published in the June 15 New Jersey Register. The Notice of Emergency Adoption and Concurrent Proposal can be found on the DLGS website at https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/resources/rules_docs/R.2020%20d.062%20(52%20N.J.R.%201275(a)).pdf.

Executive Order 127 allows emergency rules that would otherwise expire during the current public health emergency to be extended until 90 days following the end of the public health emergency. As such the local unit e-procurement rules, which would otherwise statutorily expire on July 20, will remain in effect until 90 days following the end of the public health emergency.

Any formal comments on the regulations should be emailed to dlgs@dca.nj.gov with the heading Electronic Procurement Regulations - Rule Proposal Comment.

The deadline for comment submission remains July 15. Please email any questions on the use of electronic procurement platforms to lpcl@dca.nj.gov.

Notice has been sent to: Procurement Officials; Municipal CFOs; County CFOs; Municipal Clerks; Freeholder Board Clerks; Authority Officials; Fire District Officials; DLGS Listserv

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Adjustment of Public Bidding Thresholds Effective July 1, 2020 - 06/25/2020

Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:11-3(c) and 18A:18A-3(b), the State Treasurer has exercised her authority to adjust bid thresholds for contracting units subject to the Local Public Contracts Law and the Public School Contracts Law. These adjustments become effective on July 1, 2020.

The maximum bid threshold has been increased from $40,000 to $44,000 for contracting units that have appointed a Qualified Purchasing Agent and avail themselves of the related higher bid threshold pursuant to N.J.S.A 40A:11-3 and 18A:18A-3.  

Pursuant to N.J.S.A 52:15C-10(d), the Office of the State Comptroller, after consultation with the Department of the Treasury, has also exercised its statutory authority to adjust the threshold amounts for reporting set forth in N.J.S.A 52:15C-10 (a) and (b).

Please review Local Finance Notice 2020-14, available at https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/lfns/20/2020-14.pdf,

for further information concerning the new public bidding thresholds and State Comptroller contract reporting thresholds. A listing of all contracting thresholds, including the current prevailing wage thresholds for municipal public works contracts, is available at https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/programs/lpcl_docs/Contracting%20Threshold%20Tables.pdf.

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E-Procurement - Comment Period for Regulations - 06/19/2020

DLGS adopted Emergency regulations to allow local governments and school districts to utilize online platforms for procuring goods, services, power supply, and contracts for public works projects. These emergency regulations are being concurrently proposed for permanent adoption and have been published in the June 15 New Jersey Register. The Notice of Emergency Adoption and Concurrent Proposal, along with the Notice of Imminent Peril and Governor concurrence for the emergency adoption, can be found on the DLGS website at https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dlgs/resources/rules_reg.html. The Notice of Emergency Adoption and Concurrent Proposal is located in the Proposed Rules and Recently Adopted Rules sections. Any formal comments on the regulations should be emailed to dlgs@dca.nj.gov with the heading Electronic Procurement Regulations - Rule Proposal Comment. The deadline for comment submission is July 15. Please email any questions on the use of electronic procurement platforms to lpcl@dca.nj.gov.

 

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COVID-19 Temporary Rental Assistance Program - 06/16/2020

DCA is pleased to announce the COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program, which will provide temporary rental assistance to selected low and moderate income households who have experienced unemployment or reduced income due to the pandemic. For more information on the program and how to apply, visit https://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dhcr/offices/cverap.html.

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Updated: 02/12/2021