Project Application Status Page
Introduction and Background

Introduction:

This page has been established by the DRBC to assist applicants and the public in understanding the status of docket applications (in accordance with Section 3.8 of the Delaware River Basin Compact) and permit applications (in accordance with Section 10.3 of the Compact and the commission's Southeastern Pennsylvania Ground Water Protected Area Regulations). Docket and permit applications are reviewed by the DRBC Water Resources Management Branch (WRMB). In addition to general information about the commission's project review authority and process, an excel matrix is provided containing information about applications that are currently under review.

Please note: Although the information on this page is updated on a regular basis, commission hearing dates are subject to change, Applicants should check with the project lead if they have questions regarding the hearing status of a project. A project can receive commission consideration at a public hearing only when notice has been published at least 10 days prior to the hearing date. GWPA permits do not automatically receive a commission hearing. They are approved or disapproved by the DRBC executive director with the concurrence of the Pennsylvania member of the commission (or his or her designated alternate).

A project for which no hearing date is listed in the accompanying matrix may nevertheless be under active review. A hearing date may not yet have been assigned for any of several reasons, including missing information, the status of state review, or WRMB work load. 

Five commission hearing dates are ordinarily scheduled each year, approximately 10 weeks apart. Applicants should advise WRMB staff of any key project milestones that could be compromised if a hearing date is missed. The commission's WRMB staff will attempt to accommodate the needs of the applicant; however, project reviews are subject to the rules of the commission, branch work load, timing of the applicant's submission relative to the next commission hearing, coordination with the state, and the quality of the application. Generally, applicants should anticipate 4-6 months for review of an application prior to commission hearing and should make an early application to avoid project delays.

An informal conference may be scheduled to explain, supplement, or review a project application. Applicants for new projects are encouraged to seek an informal conference early in the project development stage.

The commission's regulations provide for emergency approval between commission meetings in the event that action is required to protect the public interest or to avoid substantial and irreparable injury to a private person or property. Under such circumstances, if review, hearing, and determination in accordance with the commission's usual procedures are not possible, the DRBC executive director, with the approval of the chairman of the commission, may issue an emergency certificate authorizing an applicant to take such action as the executive director may deem necessary and proper, pending review, hearing, and determination in accordance with commission procedures.

The information presented on this page does not constitute a decision by the DRBC executive director or the commission. Rather, it is generated by staff and is subject to change upon the receipt of additional information submitted by the applicant or as a result of commission review.

Background:

The Delaware River Basin Compact requires the commission to formulate and adopt a Comprehensive Plan for the immediate and long-range development and uses of the water resources of the basin and a multi-year water resources program consistent with the Comprehensive Plan (Compact, §3.2). The Compact further provides that no project having a substantial effect on the water resources of the basin shall be undertaken unless it shall have been first submitted to and approved by the commission (Compact, §3.8). In accordance with Section 3.8 of the Compact, the commission is required to approve a project whenever it finds and determines that the project would not substantially impair or conflict with the Comprehensive Plan. The commission provides by regulation for the procedure of submission, review, and consideration of projects and for its determinations pursuant to Section 3.8.

The Comprehensive Plan consists of all public and private projects and facilities that are required, in the judgment of the commission, for the optimum planning, development, conservation, utilization, management, and control of the water resources of the basin to meet present and future needs. It also incorporates policies and regulations adopted by the commission for the effectuation and enforcement of the Compact. The Comprehensive Plan is subject to periodic review and revision in accordance with Sections 3.2 and 13.1 of the Compact.

Definitions
  • Southeastern Pennsylvania Ground Water Protected Area (GWPA) ‑ Approximately one million residents of southeastern Pennsylvania currently rely entirely or substantially on the ground water resources underlying Berks, Bucks, Chester, and Montgomery counties for supplies of domestic, municipal, commercial, industrial, and agricultural water. The GWPA Regulations (pdf 178 KB) protect the ground water resources in the Triassic lowland and adjacent area of southeastern Pennsylvania and the public interest in those resources.  Please also see GWPA program information at the above link.
  • Special Protection Waters (SPW) - The DRBC has adopted SPW Regulations designed to protect existing high water quality in areas of the Delaware River Basin where water quality is better than the criteria established for the protection of designated uses. In 1992, the DRBC classified the Upper and Middle Delaware River, encompassing the 120-mile reach from Hancock, New York to the Delaware Water Gap, as SPW. This reach includes sections of the river designated by Congress in 1978 as "Wild and Scenic," including the Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River and the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, as well as an eight-mile section between Milrift and Milford, Pennsylvania that is not designated Wild and Scenic. On July 16, 2008, the DRBC unanimously approved the permanent designation of the Lower Delaware River as SPW with a classification of Significant Resource Waters (SRW). This action establishes numeric values for existing water quality in the 76-mile-long stretch of river extending from the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area downstream to the head of tide at Trenton, N.J. It also expands coverage of the DRBC's SPW anti-degradation regulations to include the entire 197-mile non-tidal Delaware River from Hancock, N.Y. south to Trenton. Please refer to Resolution 2008-09 for additional details.
  • New Jersey Critical Water Supply Areas 1 & 2 - The State of New Jersey has designated as Critical Water Supply Areas two areas lying partially within the Delaware River Basin where excessive water usage poses a significant threat to the long-term integrity of a water supply source. Critical Area No. 1 was declared in 1985 and includes portions of Middlesex, Monmouth, and Ocean counties. There are four affected aquifers in this critical area: the Englishtown, Upper and Lower Potomac-Raritan-Magothy, and Wenonah-Mt. Laurel aquifers. Water allocations were reduced by between 40 and 50 percent within Critical Area No. 1 by the state. Critical Area No. 2 was declared in 1994 and includes portions of Burlington, Camden, Gloucester, Atlantic, Cumberland, Salem, Monmouth, and Ocean counties. Water allocations from the Potomac-Raritan-Magothy aquifer system were reduced an average of 22 percent within this region by the state.
  • Notice of Application Received (NAR) - The commission issues a public Notice of Application Received (NAR) upon receipt of an application. The notice is issued prior to a detailed review by the WRMB. Because projects may be modified as a result of commission review, the project description in an NAR does not always perfectly match the project description in the corresponding docket approval, when issued.
  • Projects are defined as withdrawals, discharges, or diversions as follows:
    • GW = ground water withdrawal
    • SW = surface water withdrawal
    • Spring = spring water withdrawal
    • STP = sewage treatment plant
    • IWTP = industrial waste treatment plant
    • WTP = water treatment plant
    • WWTP = wastewater treatment plant
    • Import = diversion or transfer of water/wastewater into the Delaware River Basin
    • Export = diversion or transfer of water/wastewater from the Delaware River Basin
Project Categories

For purposes of efficiency at public hearings, dockets are assigned one of three general categories, as follows:

  • Renewals with no substantive changes (no change in allocation or treatment process). A new or replacement well may be included in the application with no change in allocation.
  • Renewals with substantive changes (increases/decreases in ground/surface water allocation, wastewater discharge, treatment process, etc.).
  • New Projects. A project for which no docket or GWPA permit has been issued previously or an expired docket that has not been administratively continued is considered "new."
Most Recent Project Application Status Information and Listing of AA Projects

Application Status Information:

Please note: If you do not have Microsoft Excel software on your computer, you can download the free Excel Viewer 2003 from the Microsoft web site.

The excel file contains information for all four basin states and can be sorted and/or filtered for specific information, but no other changes can be made.

Most Recent Listing of Administrative Agreement (AA) Projects:

Contacts

General questions should be addressed to Victoria Lawson, Project Review Section Secretary, at victoria.lawson@drbc.state.nj.us or 609-883-9500 ext. 216.

Questions regarding a specific project application should be addressed to the WRMB staff lead who is identified in the excel matrix. Email addresses and telephone numbers for WRMB staff members are provided below.

Project Lead

Phone
609-883-9500

Email

RD Bob Damiani
Ext. 303
Bob.Damiani@drbc.state.nj.us
EE Eric Engle
Ext. 229
Eric.Engle@drbc.state.nj.us
DK David Kovach
Ext. 264
David.Kovach@drbc.state.nj.us
SM Shane McAleer
Ext. 293
Shane.McAleer@drbc.state.nj.us

BM

William J. Muszynski

Ext. 221

William.Muszynski@drbc.state.nj.us

SW Steve Walsh
Ext. 251
Steve.Walsh@drbc.state.nj.us

Any questions regarding the status of a permit issued by the state should be directed to the appropriate state agency.