The Environmental Commission has the authority to conduct research into the use, and possible use, of land within the municipality, and may coordinate the activities of unofficial bodies organized for similar purposes. It may also prepare, print and distribute books, maps, charts, plans and pamphlets, and may recommend to the planning board and governing body plans and programs for inclusion in the master plan for development and land use.
By law, the Environmental Commission shall keep a list of all open areas, publicly or privately owned, including wetlands, in order to ensure the proper use of such lands. In South Orange, the index of open lands is kept both as part of the Recreation and Open Space Index (ROSI) provided by the Village to the State Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for all of its Green Acres grants, and by the Village Planner as part of the Master Plan. The environmental commission has advocated to the planning board and the governing body that the open space and public use zoning designation in the zoning ordinance be amended to more specifically reflect the use of our open lands.
James McGowan, Chairman
Siobhan Noland, Member
Patricia Canning, Member
Robert Orgera, Member
Richard Bell, Member
Neil Chambers, Planning Board Representative
David Kraiker, Secretary
Ritu Bachhawat, Alternate #1
John Calhoon, Alternate #2
Trustee Walter Clarke, Trustee Liaison
Meetings: Generally held on the 3rd Thursday of each month in the Municipal Offices, 76 South Orange Avenue, South Orange, NJ 07079 in Conference Room 1 at 7:30 p.m. All meetings are open to the public in accordance with the requirements of the “Open Public Meetings Act” (Sunshine Law).