Anthony T. Drollas Jr.
Mr. Drollas has almost thirty (30) years of experience in the representation of private and public sector clients in all aspects of federal and state civil litigation matters, and in administrative proceedings before the executive branch of state government. Tony has focused his practice on environmental and land use matters, including a breadth of issues in federal and state environmental law, as well as issues that are unique to New Jersey government, including the regulation of solid waste disposal pursuant to the Solid Waste Management Act, development within regulated freshwater wetlands, flood plains, and in coastal zones, permitting and enforcement matters pursuant to the state’s air pollution and hazardous waste disposal laws, and land development matters before the New Jersey Pinelands Commission and on behalf of the New Jersey Schools Development Authority. Mr. Drollas also has extensive experience in land acquisition matters on behalf of government and private sector clients, and in eminent domain litigation matters, and has nearly two decades of experience in representing municipal utilities authorities in all aspects of the management of public water supplies and wastewater disposal systems. Tony also has over a decade of experience in the representation of municipal governing bodies as Township Attorney, and as Board attorney for local land use regulatory agencies, including planning and zoning boards, and as general counsel to a County planning board.
Relevant experience on behalf of public sector clients
- Nearly twenty (20) years of experience serving as general counsel to municipal utilities authorities.
- Represent a municipality before NJDEP over regulatory compliance issues and over upgrades to municipal water supply system.
- Experienced in handling redevelopment efforts, in the preparation of developer’s agreements for selected redevelopers, and with developer’s construction cost sharing and reimbursement agreements associated with related upgrades and expansions of sewer facilities.
- Represented municipal water and wastewater utilities in all aspects of the their operations, including water supply and regulatory issues involving the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, as well as construction contract and real estate issues involving the authorities on a regular basis.
- Represent municipal governing bodies and elected officials over wide variety of municipal government issues, Faulkner Act and OPRA compliance, enforcement of municipal zoning and construction codes, defense and prosecution of municipal ordinances, master plan and zoning enforcement ordinance development.
- Represented a county improvement authority before NJDEP to resolve Green Acres funding issues in order to facilitate the redevelopment of public property, and represented another county improvement authority before NJDEP in order to resolve land use and water supply issues to facilitate the development of a planned expansion of a corrections facility.
- Represented county government before the New Jersey Pinelands Commission for approvals related to the sale of a public hospital.
- Represented a municipal utilities authority to resolve township-wide water supply permitting issues with NJDEP in order to facilitate ongoing commercial and residential development projects in the Township, and to resolve NJPDES permit renewal issues associated with a wastewater treatment facility, and to resolve disputes over developers’ construction cost sharing and reimbursement agreements.
- Represented municipal government in New Jersey Superior Court over costs for construction of municipal convention center and compliance with FEMA, FHACA, Coastal Zone, and UCC regulations.
- Serve as general counsel to a County Planning Board. Experienced in reviewing development applications pursuant to the County Planning Act. Served as special counsel on a litigation and regulatory matter involving the proposed development of a residential and commercial project bordering on two municipalities, as well as the County’s efforts to enforce a Developer’s Agreement requiring the construction of required off-tract road improvements.
- Represented County government in the defense and dismissal of land title claims filed in federal court by Native Americans seeking tribal status and related benefits.
- Served as co-counsel in the defense of an enforcement action filed by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection under the state’s Freshwater Wetlands Protection Act, which the Department at the time described as the largest wetlands enforcement action in state history. The matter was resolved by the execution of an administrative consent order with the Department, and the client’s simultaneous sale of approximately 10,000 acres of land to a conservation organization.
- Represented a public entity client in the resolution of land acquisition and contaminated site cleanup and cost recovery issues with NJDEP in order to assemble properties for school construction projects, consistent with strict construction schedules.
- Represented a school district to resolve land use and environmental permitting issues with the New Jersey Pinelands Commission and NJDEP, in order to facilitate the construction of a regional high school on approximately 400 acres of land in Burlington County.
- Represented a municipality to resolve waterfront development, freshwater wetlands, contaminated site, and Safe Drinking Water Act issues with NJDEP to facilitate a mixed-use residential, commercial, and recreational project along the Delaware River.
- Represent a county government to resolve NJPDES permit issues associated with a planned re-start of a landfill leachate treatment plant, consistent with the county’s construction and operations schedule.
- Handled the sale and/or retirement of Pinelands Development Credits, the transferable development rights established by the Pinelands Commission for certain properties within the Pinelands National Reserve.
- Mr. Drollas served as a Deputy Attorney General of New Jersey from 1988 to 1996, including over three years of service in the Transportation Section in the Division of Law handling condemnation matters on behalf of the New Jersey Department of Transportation, as well as over five years of service in the Environmental Protection Section handling land use and contaminated site litigation on behalf of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and administrative matters involving the New Jersey Pinelands Commission.
- Mr. Drollas has served as Special Counsel to the New Jersey Schools Construction Corporation beginning in 2003 with respect to land acquisition for school projects in Trenton (Roebling School), Paterson (Paterson International High School) and Camden (Cooper’s Poynt Elementary School). Mr. Drollas has also served as counsel to the New Jersey Turnpike Authority on condemnation matters, including representing the Turnpike Authority on land acquisitions related to the Route 92 project in Middlesex County, as well as the planned Secaucus Interchange in Hudson County.
- Serve as general counsel to County Bridge Commission and County Agricultural Development Board.
- Mr. Drollas served as the New Jersey Governor’s Representative to the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission in 2001-02.
Experience on behalf of private sector clients
- Represented a landowner over the negotiation of an administrative consent order with NJDEP for contaminated site issues on property in Camden in order to facilitate a sale of the property, addressing both the scope and the timing of the required remediation work.
- Represented a landowner in Bergen County to resolve permitting and enforcement issues associated with the development of waterfront property that is governed by NJDEP’s Hudson River Walkway regulations.
- Served as co-counsel to a private religious organization in their efforts to develop oceanfront property, including the negotiation of a developer’s agreement with a selected developer, and obtaining required regulatory approvals for the proposed development.
- Represented developers in Middlesex County over freshwater wetlands and associated historic site preservation issues with NJDEP in order to facilitate the construction of residential and commercial properties.
- Represented a quarry operation in Passaic County to resolve air quality issues with NJDEP in order to facilitate the installation of advanced diesel generators.
- Represented a family of landowners in efforts to sell approximately 1600 acres of land in Burlington County to the NJDEP Green Acres program.
- Represented a metals recycler in tort litigation filed by city residents in state and federal courts involving nuisance claims associated with alleged air and noise pollution in the surrounding neighborhood.
- Represented a septic waste hauler in cost recovery litigation filed by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection involving the cleanup of the BEMS landfill in southern Burlington County.
- Represented a large cranberry grower to resolve complex freshwater wetlands permitting and enforcement issues with NJDEP in order to facilitate the sale of approximately 10,000 acres of farmland and watershed to a non-profit land conservation organization, consistent with strict time deadlines.
- Represented a developer of multi-family residential and commercial properties in Burlington County before NJDEP to resolve freshwater wetlands and stream encroachment issues, in order to comply with conditions of local development approvals and to facilitate the sale of those properties.
- Represented a developer of single-family residential property in Burlington County to resolve water supply issues before NJDEP, in order to comply with conditions of local development approvals.
- Represented the owner of waterfront property in Monmouth County in negotiations with a developer over the lease and planned redevelopment of vacant waterfront property in order to facilitate the construction of residential, commercial, and recreational development consistent with coastal development regulations administered by NJDEP and FEMA.
- Mr. Drollas has appeared before land development boards on behalf of residential and commercial land developers in a number of municipalities in Bordentown Township, Burlington Township, the Townships of Cinnaminson, Delran, Evesham, Lumberton, Mount Holly, Mount Laurel, North Hanover, and Westampton. Mr. Drollas has also appeared before the Planning Board of the City of Paterson, Passaic County, the land development board of the City of Bridgeton, Cumberland County, and the land development board in Stafford Township, Ocean County.
- Mr. Drollas has also represented several municipalities in ongoing affordable housing litigation matters, and has advised them on COAH compliance issues as they arise. In re COAH, 221 N.J. 1 (2015).
Illustrative litigation matters
- United States v. Rohm & Haas Co., 939 F. Supp. 1142 (D.N.J. 1996). Mr. Drollas represented DEP in contaminated site cost recovery and natural resource damage litigation matters in state and federal courts in New Jersey, including the Department’s efforts to recover ‘off-site’ contamination associated with the Lipari Landfill Superfund site.
- Toll Brothers, Inc. v. Burlington County Board of Chosen Freeholders, et al., 194 N.J. 223 (2008), 388 N.J. Super. 103 (App. Div. 2006). Represented County government before the New Jersey Superior Court, Law and Appellate Divisions, and the New Jersey Supreme Court over the validity and enforcement of a developer’s agreement over a developer’s obligations to provide off-tract road improvements for a residential and commercial development.
- Hess Corporation v. Burlington County Planning Board, 195 N.J. 616 (2008). Represented the Burlington County Planning Board before the New Jersey Superior Court, Law and Appellate Divisions, and before the New Jersey Supreme Court in litigation over a commercial developer’s entitlement to automatic approval of a development application before the Planning Board.
- Florence Township v. County of Burlington, Docket No. L-1362-01 (Law Div., Mercer County, 2005). Represented Burlington County in litigation filed by a municipality in the New Jersey Superior Court seeking enhanced ‘host community benefits’ related to construction activity at the Burlington County Resource Recovery Complex.
- Patzau v. New Jersey Department of Transportation, et al., 271 N.J. Super. 294 (App. Div. 1994), certif. den. 138 N.J. 268 (1994). Successful defense of the constitutionality of Air Safety and Hazardous Zoning Act before the New Jersey Superior Court, Law and Appellate Divisions, and the New Jersey Supreme Court.
- Walker v. Burlington County Board of Chosen Freeholders, Docket No. A-2296-12T4 (App. Div. 2015). Defense of County decision to exclude solid waste recycling facility from County Solid Waste Management Plan, before the Superior Court, Law and Appellate Divisions.
- New Jersey Natural Gas Co. v. Burlington County, Docket No. L-332-16 (Law Div. 2016). Defense and enforcement of County Road Occupancy Permit regulations before Superior Court, Law Division, related to the planned expansion of a regional natural gas pipeline through portions of Burlington County.
- Certain Underwriters at Lloyds London v. Burlington County Bridge Commission, Docket No. L-498-07 (Law Div. 2009). Defense of insurance policy coverage litigation over $24 mil in costs of required repairs to damage to fender pier at the Tacony-Palmyra Bridge.
- GLP Architects v. County of Burlington, Docket No. L-490-13 (Law Div. 2014). Defense of claims for payment of costs related to construction of public library, before the Superior Court, Law Division.
- Altchem Environmental Services v. County of Burlington, Case No. 1:07-cv-00800 (U.S. District Court, D.N.J. 2009). Defense of claims for payment of costs related to construction of public library, before U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey.
- Mr. Drollas also represented the NJDEP in a substantial number of administrative appeal matters (plenary hearings) before the New Jersey Office of Administrative Law over permitting and enforcement matters under the New Jersey Air Pollution Control Act, the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, the Freshwater Wetlands Protection Act, the Coastal Area Facility Review Act, and the Flood Hazard Area Control Act.
- The New Jersey Statewide Mandatory Source Separation and Recycling Act: The Nation’s First Comprehensive Statewide Mandatory Recycling Program, 12 Seton Hall Legis. J. 271 (1989)
Honors and Awards
- Recognized as one of South Jersey’s “Top Attorneys” as published by SJ Magazine
- Recognized as one of South Jersey’s Awesome Attorneys as published by South Jersey Magazine
Professional Associations and Memberships
- American Bar Association, Member (Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources; Section of Real Property, Trust, and Estate Law), 1988 – Present
- New Jersey State Bar Association, Member (Sections on Environmental Law and Public Contracts Law)
- New Jersey Association of Environmental Authorities
- National Association of Clean Water Agencies