Archive for the ‘Press Releases’ Category

Long Marmero appointed to Bridgeton Zoning Board

Friday, August 13th, 2010

August 12, 2010

The firm of Long Marmero & Associates has been appointed as counsel to the Bridgeton Zoning Board.

Bridgeton is a city in Cumberland County, New Jersey, on the Cohansey River, near Delaware Bay. As of the United States 2000 Census, the city population was 22,771. Bridgeton has a rich history and is a hub for agricultural production in the Garden State. The city has the largest historic district of any incorporated town in New Jersey; it is dominated by large Victorian houses and a downtown area constructed in the 1920s.

Long Marmero is one of the most recognized names in municipal government and land use law in southern New Jersey with experience assisting a diverse group of municipalities and entities throughout the region.

In the News: Dr. Maz leads Health Care Reform Panel

Monday, April 19th, 2010

Long, Marmero associate Dr. Anthony Mazzarelli is a leading expert on the effects of the recently passed health-care reform law. Below is a recent article about a panel he convened for the professionals serving at Cooper University Hospital. If you have questions about how the new reforms will impact your municipality, institution, business or organization call Long, Marmero & Associates to discuss specific strategies.

Cooper told of health-care law
Friday, April 16, 2010 – Gloucester County Times
By Christina Paciolla

Several health-care professionals at Cooper University Hospital in Camden learned a little more about what the health-care reform law means to them.

A panel of experts Ð led by Anthony Mazzarelli, medical director of emergency medicine at Cooper Ð were at the hospital on Thursday afternoon to explain the bill’s specifics and what can be expected at a hospital level.

“Our goal was to give you experts to help educate you on this bill,” Mazzarelli said.

The experts on hand were Sanford M. Barth, of the Graduate School of Population Health at Thomas Jefferson University; Roland D. McDevitt, director of health-care research at Towers Watson’s Research & Innovation Center in Arlington, Va.; Pete Parvis, health-care attorney for Venable LLP; and Marcus Rayner, executive director of the New Jersey Lawsuit Reform Alliance.

After President Barack Obama signed the nearly $1 trillion health-care overhaul bill recently, health-care attorneys like Parvis have been breaking down the bill so parts can be understood easier.

Mazzarelli said that he and other officials have been closely scrutinizing Massachusetts. There, a 2006 health care reform law mandated that nearly every resident get a state-government-regulated minimum level of coverage for health care.

“Emergency room visits increased 7 to 10 percent,” said Mazzarelli. “I am presuming we will see an increase similar to that.”

With so many millions more people able to obtain coverage over the next few years under the health-care bill, Mazzarelli said that hospital officials are studying trends now to better prepare them for a possible increase.

Right now, the changes to health care haven’t been felt too much on the hospital’s end, Mazzarelli said, but understanding the bill and knowing which parts will be implemented when is important.

Thursday’s panel discussion was recorded and will be made available soon so every health-care professional at Cooper can benefit.

“Our goal would be to provide the best possible care we can,” said Mazzarelli. “That’s why we want to understand this bill.”

In the News – Municipal Tax Appeals Impacting Towns and Taxpayers

Monday, March 15th, 2010

Ratables not offering relief to Gloucester County towns
Sunday, March 14, 2010
Gloucester County Times
By Pete McCarthy

Municipal officials are always looking for growth in an effort to reduce the burden on property taxpayers.

In this economy, it’s not coming soon enough which leaves homeowners facing the burden.

Even if towns are seeing growth, it is coming in the form of residential development. That only creates more issues, according to officials, because of the need to increase services.

“I think you see some of the municipalities were getting a great deal of ratable growth over the last several years,” said Ed Burek, the assessor and tax administrator for Gloucester County. “They have kind of fallen off. … This is the first year that there’s been a downward turn. It just represents everything happening in the economic marketplace.”

The only way to react, Burek said, is to “make adjustments downward because the dollars aren’t there.”

That means local municipalities must find ways to cut without hurting the residents, said East Greenwich Mayor Fred Grant.

Grant’s town has seen plenty of growth, but it has mostly been residential development.

“It does help,” said Grant, “but at the same time, it’s still creating an impact of more work for the town in terms of services.”

With state cuts looming, many communities have to learn to do more with existing resources or even less.

“It’s tough in this economy,” said Grant. “We’ve cut our budget.”

Other towns are dealing with a unique kind of issue, specifically, tax appeals. In some cases, these towns have to dole out millions of dollars because they have been collecting too much in terms of taxes from large corporations.

Paulsboro saw this happen with two refineries being granted these appeals.

It “directly goes” toward the residential side of ratable growth, which ends up canceling out most of the progress, according to Burzichelli.

“When they (the industries) pay less taxes, the residential taxpayers pay more,” Burzichelli said of the commercial appeals. “The plants didn’t double in value, so the ratio has to be paid equally.”

There are two options to deal with this problem for towns like Paulsboro, which is only two square miles in size and has limited housing growth.

“You cut expenses or you have to ask the taxpayers for more money,” said Burzichelli. “It’s a delicate balance of what you can cut and what is the minimal amount you can ask for when residents are not getting more services.”

Some towns will have to start looking at ways to lessen the blow of these tax appeals, according to Al Marmero, a Woodbury attorney who represents many municipalities in these matters.

Last month, Marmero spoke to the Gloucester County Mayor’s Association about this specific topic. During his keynote address, he warned towns to be wary of settling on tax appeals without putting up a fight.

To effectively weather the current economic situation, he said, towns must challenge tax appeals.

He said there are ways to reach a compromise that does not force a municipality or other governing body to dole out massive amounts of cash in one shot.

“Each time you settle one of these cases, it hurts a municipality more and more,” Marmero said last week.

In order to file a tax appeal, a company or homeowner must pay all outstanding taxes. If they win, the governing body has to write a check for the amount found to be in excess.

“We’re trying to get them to be more creative in how they settle the case,” said Marmero. “You give them a lower assessment in the future so you don’t lose any revenue from the prior years.”

Tax appeals are filed for a number of reasons. Residential appeals are filed because the homeowner realizes their property is not worth its assessed value. Commercial properties file because they are losing business either with fewer patrons or if it’s a large shopping center tenants have vacated.

“You have to look at these things seriously, and if it’s worth fighting you might want to fight it right away,” said Marmero.

New Jersey is no worse off than other states, according to the county’s tax expert. Some are deeper in the recession with exorbitant foreclosure rates, said Burek.

“It looks like we’re flat and stabilized, and waiting for the next surge,” said Burek. “It’s the economy. It’s what is happening.”

In the News – Cumberland County Improvement Authority

Monday, March 15th, 2010

CCIA trashes big landfill expansion
Saturday, March 13, 2010
By Matt Dunn
The News of Cumberland County

MILLVILLE – Nothing stands in the way of the Cumberland County Improvement Authority moving forward with a scaled-down version of what originally was a costly landfill expansion project, according to CCIA officials.

Doug Long, CCIA counsel, said Friday that the CCIA board of directors voted Feb. 2 to reject all bids for a proposed $15 million addition to the Cumberland County Solid Waste Complex, after previously awarding a contract for the project last November to R.E. Pierson Construction Co., Inc.

The decision to reject all bids came after concern about the CCIA’s financial state was voiced earlier this year by CCIA management consultant Don Rainear.

The landfill expansion was expected to double the CCIA’s debt within the next four years.

At the same time, the CCIA expects to experience a sharp drop in revenue as a result of a recent decision by the Atlantic County Utilities Authority to no longer send trash to Cumberland County’s landfill.

Although there is pending litigation involving Pierson and CETCO Contracting Services – the second lowest bidder on the landfill expansion – Long said that litigation is separate from the fact that the CCIA has rejected all bids.

CETCO filed a complaint in Superior Court in January claiming that Pierson should be disqualified from working on the landfill expansion because one of the company’s subcontractors allegedly pleaded guilty to tax evasion in the late 1990s, and hid this fact from the CCIA.

Pierson filed a motion in response, claiming that if they are disqualified, the CCIA has breached its contract with them.

Their position is that the CCIA was aware of the subcontractor’s felony conviction.

Regardless of how the litigation is resolved, Long said the worst case scenario for the CCIA is that the authority will be forced to pay a “nominal” penalty to Pierson.

Meanwhile, the CCIA’s Feb. 2 decision to reject all bids will stand, no matter what.

“Nothing is going to stop the CCIA from moving forward with modifying the scope of work and producing a much smaller project,” Long said after a hearing Friday in Superior Court in Cumberland County regarding the CETCO motion.

At the hearing, Superior Court Judge Michael Brooke Fisher denied a number of motions to focus in on the key question of whether Pierson should have been disqualified from the landfill project.

Rainear, who is currently handling the responsibilities of CCIA executive director, said Friday that the CCIA’s professional staff is currently doing an estimate on how much life is left in the county landfill.

The original $15 million landfill expansion would have immediately added 30 acres to the landfill.

“It was estimated to take us to 2034,” Rainear said.

The question now is whether the CCIA has the ability to do a phased-in expansion.

“At some point, we’re going to have to expand this landfill,” he said.

As for the bond which was issued last year that the CCIA planned to use to pay for the landfill expansion, Rainear said the money received from the bond could be used to pay off the bond’s debt service.

Rainear said that “very little” interest has accumulated on the bond, which brought the CCIA’s outstanding debt to $46.3 million last year, an increase of about $24 million.

“That’s a fixed cost, no matter how much the price of the project goes down,” he said.

Al Marmero presents to Glouco Mayors on Tax Appeals

Thursday, March 4th, 2010

        On Tuesday, February 23, 2010 Long, Marmero partner Al Marmero gave the keynote address at a meeting of the Gloucester County Mayor’s Association.  The presentation topic was the rise of tax appeals and its straining effect on municipalities. To effectively weather the current economic storm, municipalities must focus on properly defending tax appeals.  Improper representation in tax appeals can lead to budgetary disasters for a municipality in an already uncertain climate.  The key takeaways for participants were the effective use of litigation, negotiated settlement and drafting of settlement agreements to mitigate a sharp loss of revenue brought on by the numerical rise of claims.

        If you or your municipality are facing significant exposure to tax appeals, contact Al Marmero to discuss how we can help you effectively plan to lead your municipality and stabilize your tax base for growth going forward.

Dr. Maz heading to Haiti as leader of Cooper University Hospital Team

Thursday, January 14th, 2010

Cooper University Hospital will send a relief medical team to Haiti. The mission will be headed by Anthony Mazzarelli, M.D., the Director of Emergency Medicine at Cooper. Dr. Maz is also an attorney practicing with Long Marmero & Associates.

Two Cooper nurses have already been deployed as part of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) operation. The rest of the medical team will go to Haiti within the next few days.

“Haiti already had a significant need of medical resources before the earthquake hit,” said Mazzarelli. “The earthquake has now increased that need exponentially. We are in contact with the rescue teams on the ground who are assessing the specific medical needs and safety concerns for relief personnel trying to deploy.”

Solar Energy Seminar at Long Marmero

Monday, December 14th, 2009

On Monday, December 7, 2009, the founding partners of Long, Marmero, & Associates, LLP, Douglas Long and Albert Marmero, conducted a seminar regarding newly enacted New Jersey Senate Bill S1303. Among attendees were Long, Marmero clients including Provident Development, Millenium Land Development, Solular Energy, and other individual property owners with an interest in pursuing solar energy.

On November 20, 2009, Governor Jon Corzine signed New Jersey Senate Bill S1303, which now goes into effect immediately and acts as an amendment to New Jersey’s Municipal Land Use Law, also known as the “MLUL.” This amendment finally defines the term “inherently beneficial,” which had previously been only a common law term that was derived from years of New Jersey case law. In New Jersey, in order to receive a use variance, an applicant must make statutory proofs which are known as the positive criteria and the negative criteria. Pursuant to New Jersey case law, uses that were classified as “inherently beneficial” were deemed to automatically fit the positive criteria, meaning an applicant would only have to prove the negative criteria. Essentially, a use classified as “inherently beneficial” only faced half the battle as other uses, making it much easier for an applicant to receive a use variance.

        Now, for the first time, the concept of “inherently beneficial” uses is now codified as law, through Senate Bill S1303. According to managing partner Douglas Long, “of particular importance to our clients is that “inherently beneficial” is now defined to include solar energy, as the definition specifically includes “a wind, solar or photovoltaic energy facility or structure.” In other words, it is now much easier for an applicant to receive a use variance for the use of solar energy. Unless the municipality can show that the solar use is somehow detrimental to the surrounding area, the applicant will be entitled to a use variance.”

If you, your company or your municipality are considering a green energy project this will certainly help streamline the process. Call the attorneys at Long, Marmero to discuss your project and how to move the project through the pipeline.

Dr. Mazz invited to American Swiss Foundation Young Leaders Conference

Wednesday, November 25th, 2009

Dr. Anthony Mazzarelli was nominated to and participated in the 2009 American Swiss Foundation Young Leaders Conference. The event was held near Bern, Switzerland from November 7 – 14. Dr. Mazz was one of twenty-five Americans who participated in seminars, panel discussions and cultural exchange events.

The American Swiss Foundation was created in 1945, the Foundation seeks to preserve and strengthen the historic friendship between the United States and Switzerland on a person-to-person basis. The Young Leaders Conference engages participants in social, economic and political issues affecting Switzerland and the United States.

Doug Long commented on the honor, “Dr. Mazz is a unique thinker who I am sure brought a fresh, analytical perspective to the sessions in Switzerland. Anyone who has met Anthony or listened to his radio program can attest to his ability to engage the issues of the day with intelligence and passion. We are proud of his accomplishment and representation of our country at the conference.”

Anthony Mazzarelli, MD, JD, MBE is a physician, attorney, and bioethicist. He received his medical degree from Robert Wood Johnson Medical School-Camden in 2002, his law degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School in 2003, and his masters in bioethics from the University of Pennsylvania Center for Bioethics in 2003. “Mazz” is a practicing emergency medicine physician with Cooper University Hospital, a talk show host on The Big Talker 1210 AM and an active attorney with Long, Marmero, and Associates. His practice focuses on health law with an emphasis on contract law, regulatory matters, health policy, and physician / patient advocacy.

Upper Deerfield Fire Company Fundraiser

Thursday, November 19th, 2009

On Saturday December 5th Doug and Krystal Long will host a fundraiser for the Upper Deerfield Fire Department. The event will include live music, a D.J., great food and a fantastic auction.

“The holidays always call people back to their roots of helping others in need, especially in these tough times”, Doug Long commented, “Our volunteer firefighters spend every day of the year helping those in need and we are excited to be part of an opportunity to serve them.”

Auction items for the event include a night at Chef Vola Restaurant in Atlantic City, an autographed Donovan McNabb jersey, throwback Marshall Faulk and Deion Sanders jerseys with an opportunity to have them personally signed as the winning bidder chooses, Deshawn Jackson autographed football, a specially commissioned piece by abstract artist Rob Kocis, a wine refrigerator and tool set from Home Depot.

Those interested in participating in the event or donating to support the work of Upper Deerfield Fire Department may call the office at (856) 848-6440.

Three From Long, Marmero Win Top Lawyer Award

Wednesday, November 11th, 2009

South Jersey Magazine announced their South Jersey’s Awesome Attorneys of the Year Awards in their November issue and three from Long, Marmero & Associated were recognized.  Founding partners Doug Long and Al Marmero were tabbed as top Land Use Attorneys and Kevin Bright was identified for his work in the practice area of Municipal Court Law.

Long was one of a handful of attorneys chosen for the pictorial centerpiece of the article.  “It is always exciting to be recognized by your clients and peers for expertise in your profession,” said Long, “We have worked hard to build a responsive firm in a tough economic climate and it is gratifying when people appreciate your efforts to serve them.”

Long Marmero & Associates was founded in 2003, specializing in the areas of Land Use, Municipal Law and Government Relations.