There is hereby established, pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40:55D-1 et seq., in the City of East Orange a Planning Board of nine members, consisting of the following four classes:
Class I: the Mayor or the Mayor's designee in the absence of the Mayor. The Mayor may appoint a designee in writing that is filed with the City Clerk and Secretary of the Planning Board prior to the meeting(s) in which the designee is to participate. The Mayor's designee shall be a citizen of the municipality, sit as a Class I member acting only on behalf of the Mayor in the absence of the Mayor. The designee is precluded from participating or voting on any matter that precludes the participation or voting of the Mayor.
Class II: one of the officials of the municipality, other than a member of the governing body, to be appointed by the Mayor. If an Environmental Commission is established, the member of the Environmental Commission who is also a member of the Planning Board as required by N.J.S.A. 40:56A-1 shall be deemed to be the Class II Planning Board member if there is both a member of the Zoning Board of Adjustment and a member of the Board of Education among the Class IV or alternate members.
Class III: a member of the governing body, to be appointed by it.
Class IV: six other citizens of the municipality, to be appointed by the Mayor. The members of Class IV shall hold no other municipal office, except that one member may be a member of the Zoning Board of Adjustment or Historic Preservation Commission and one may be a member of the Board of Education. A member of the Environmental Commission who is also a member of the Planning Board as required by N.J.S.A. 40:56A-1 shall be a Class IV Planning Board member unless there is among the Class IV members of the Planning Board both a member of the Zoning Board of Adjustment and a member of the Board of Education, in which case the member of the Environmental Commission (if established) shall be deemed to be the Class II member of the Planning Board. Membership on a municipal board or commission whose function is advisory in nature, and the establishment of which is discretionary and not required by statute, shall not be considered the holding of a municipal office.
Two alternate members shall be appointed by the Mayor, who shall be municipal residents who meet the qualifications of Class IV members. Alternate members shall be designated at the time of appointment by the Mayor as "Alternate No. 1" and "Alternate No. 2." The terms of the alternate members shall be for two years, except that the terms of the alternate members shall be such that the term of not more than one alternate member shall expire in any one year; provided, however, that in no instance shall the terms of the alternate members first appointed exceed two years. A vacancy occurring otherwise than by expiration of term shall be filled by the appointing authority for the unexpired term only.
No alternate member shall be permitted to act on any matter in which he has either directly or indirectly any personal or financial interest. An alternate member may, after public hearing if he requests one, be removed by the governing body for cause.
Alternate members may participate in all matters but may not vote except in the absence or disqualification of a regular member of any class. Participation of alternate members shall not be deemed to increase the size of the Planning Board. A vote shall not be delayed in order that a regular member may vote instead of an alternate member. In the event that a choice must be made as to which alternate member is to vote, Alternate No. 1 shall vote.
If the Planning Board lacks a quorum because any of its regular or alternate members are prohibited by N.J.S.A. 40:55D-23 or 40:55D-23.1 from acting on a matter due to the member's personal or financial interests therein, regular members of the Board of Adjustment shall be called upon to serve, for that matter only, as temporary members of the Planning Board in order of seniority of continuous service to the Board of Adjustment until there are the minimum number of members necessary to constitute a quorum to act upon the matter without any personal or financial interest therein, whether direct or indirect. If a choice has to be made between regular members of equal seniority, the Chair of the Board of Adjustment shall make the choice.
The term of the Mayor composing Class I membership shall correspond with his official tenure, excepting that the Mayor's designee in the absence of the Mayor shall serve at his pleasure during the Mayor's official tenure. The terms of the members composing Class II and Class III shall be for one year or terminate at the completion of their respective terms of office, whichever occurs first, except for a Class II member who is also a member of the Environmental Commission. The term of a Class II or a Class IV member who is also a member of the Environmental Commission shall be for three years or terminate at the completion of his term of office as a member of the Environmental Commission, whichever comes first.
The term of a Class IV member who is also a member of the Board of Adjustment or the Board of Education shall terminate whenever he is no longer a member of such other body or at the completion of his Class IV term, whichever occurs first.
The terms of all Class IV members first appointed pursuant to this chapter shall be so determined that, to the greatest practicable extent possible, the expiration of such terms shall be evenly distributed over the first four years after their appointment; provided, however, that no term of any member shall exceed four years, and further provided that nothing herein shall affect the term of any present member of the Planning Board, all of whom shall continue in office until the completion of the term for which they were appointed. Thereafter, all Class IV members shall be appointed for terms of four years, except as otherwise herein provided. All terms shall run from January 1 of the year in which the appointment is made, unless an appointment is made to fill an unexpired term.
Any member other than a Class I member, after a public hearing if he requests one, may be removed by the governing body for cause.
If a vacancy of any class shall occur otherwise than by expiration of term, it shall be filled by appointment as delineated above for the unexpired term.
The Planning Board shall elect a Chairman and Vice Chairman from the members of Class IV and select a Secretary, who may be either a member of the Planning Board, alternate member or a municipal employee designated by it. An alternate member shall not be eligible to serve as Chairman or Vice Chairman of the Planning Board.
The Planning Board may also employ or contract for the services of experts and other staff and services as it may deem necessary pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40:55D-24. The Board shall not, however, exceed the amount appropriated by the governing body for its use.
The Planning Board is authorized to adopt bylaws governing its procedural operation. It shall have the following powers and duties:
To prepare and, after a public hearing, may adopt and from time to time amend a Master Plan for the physical and social development and policy of the City, including any areas outside its boundaries which, in the Board's judgment, bear essential relation to the planning of the City, in accordance with the provisions of N.J.S.A. 40:55D-28.
To administer the provisions of subdivision control and site plan review in accordance with the provisions of this chapter and the Municipal Land Use Law, N.J.S.A. 40:55D-37 et seq.
To approve conditional uses in accordance with the provisions of this chapter pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40:55D-70.
To participate in the preparation and review of programs or plans required by state or federal law or regulations, including preparation of grant proposals and evaluation thereof.
To assemble data on a continuing basis as part of a continuous planning process.
To annually prepare a program of municipal capital improvement projects projected over a term of six years and amendments thereto and recommend the same to the governing body. A committee consisting of the Director of Public Works, Planning Director, Director of Finance, Community Development Agency Director, and Health Officer shall be established to assist the Planning Board in the preparation of the capital improvements program.
To consider and make a report to the governing body within 35 days after referral as to any proposed development regulation submitted to it pursuant to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 40:55D-26a and also pass upon other matters specifically referred to the Planning Board by the governing body pursuant to the provision of N.J.S.A. 40:55D-26b.
Variances and building permits.
When reviewing applications for approval of subdivision plats, site plans or conditional uses, to grant, to the same extent and subject to the same restrictions as the Zoning Board of Adjustment:
Variances, pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40:55D-70c.
Direction, pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40:55D-34, for issuance of a permit for a building or structure in the bed of a mapped street or public drainageway, flood control basin or public area reserved on the Official Map pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40:55D-32.
Whenever relief is requested pursuant to this subsection, notice of a hearing on the application for development shall include reference to the request for a variance or direction for issuance of a permit, as the case may be.
To perform such other advisory duties as are assigned to it by ordinance or resolution of the governing body for the aid and assistance of the governing body or other agencies or officers.
Whenever the Planning Board shall have adopted any portion of the Master Plan, the governing body or other public agency having jurisdiction over a capital project, before taking action necessitating the expenditure of any public funds incidental to the location, character or extent of such capital project shall refer the action involving such specific project to the Planning Board for review and recommendation in conjunction with such Master Plan and shall not act thereon without such recommendation or until 45 days have elapsed after such referral without receiving such recommendation. This requirement shall apply to action by a housing, parking, highway, special district or other authority, redevelopment agency, school board or other similar public agency, either state, county or municipal, consistent with N.J.S.A. 40:55D-31.
The Planning Board may investigate, study and survey substandard areas within the City and recommend to the Mayor and City Council such action as it deems advisable for the rehabilitation and preservation of such areas pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:12A-6.
The Planning Board may study and make recommendations to the governing body on an Official Map prepared pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40:55D-32 et seq.
The Planning Board shall review and issue findings concerning any long-range facilities plan submitted to the Board pursuant to the Educational Facilities Construction and Financing Act, P.L. 2000, c. 72 (N.J.S.A. 18A:7G-1 et seq.). The purpose of review is to determine the extent to which the long-range facilities plan is informed by, and consistent with, at least the land use plan element and the housing element contained within the Municipal Master Plan adopted pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40:55D-28 and such other elements of the Municipal Master Plan as the Planning Board deems necessary, and to determine whether the prospective sites for school facilities contained in the long-range facilities plan promote more effective and efficient coordination of school construction with the development efforts of the municipality. The Planning Board shall devote at least one full meeting of the Board to presentation and review of the long-range facilities plan prior to adoption of a resolution setting forth the Board's findings.
The Mayor may appoint one or more persons as a citizens advisory committee to assist or collaborate with the Planning Board in its duties, but such person or persons shall have no power to vote or take other action required of the Board. Such person or persons shall serve at the pleasure of the Mayor.
The Mayor may appoint a Subdivision and Site Plan Review Advisory Committee for the purpose of reviewing complex subdivision and site plan applications and making recommendations to the Planning Board in regard thereto. Members of the Subdivision and Site Plan Review Advisory Committee may include but need not be limited to the Mayor, Council liaison to the Planning Board, another member of the Council appointed by the Council, the Director of Public Works, Planning Director, Chief Building Inspector, Traffic Engineer, Fire Chief and the Health Officer. This committee may meet from time to time as deemed necessary based on the complexity of the site plan and/or subdivision application. The Planning Director or a designee thereof shall call this committee when an application of necessary complexity is received.
The Planning Board Chairman shall appoint a Minor Subdivision and Site Plan Subcommittee for the purpose of reviewing and acting on minor subdivision and minor site plan applications to ensure that they conform to the requirements as detailed in this chapter. Members shall include the following four Planning Board members: Council liaison to the Planning Board (Class III member), municipal official (Class II member), and two Class IV members from the public.
The Board shall adopt such rules and regulations as may be necessary to carry into effect the provisions and purposes of this article.
In the issuance of subpoenas, administration of oaths and taking of testimony, the provisions of the County and Municipal Investigations Law of 1953 (N.J.S.A. 2A:67A-1 et seq.) shall apply.