PARSIPPANY-TROY HILLS, NJ (Morris County) – Parsippany recently became the 50th municipality to attain Highlands Council approval for planning and conformance to the water, land use, and resource management requirements of the 2004 Highlands Water Protection and Planning Act, Parsippany-Troy Hills Mayor Michael Soriano said
The Highlands Council is a public regional planning agency that works in partnership with local governments in the Highlands Region towards protecting and enhancing the natural resources we all benefit from. Highlands acceptance opens up funding opportunities that Parsippany did not previously have access to, Soriano said.
“I’ve always believed that it was a mistake to withdraw from the Highlands Council several years ago, which is why my administration has worked from Day 1 to achieve Highlands Act conformance,” Soriano said. “The acceptance of our petition is a recognition of the township’s work towards water quality protection, sustainable land use, and environmental defense.”
A key component of Highlands Council approval was the adoption of Parsippany’s new Master Plan earlier this year. The first Master Plan commissioned for the township since 1976, the 2020 Master Plan was created with input from several public meetings to guide Parsippany’s land use management in the 21st century.
In particular, the Highlands Council recognized, “…preservation of community character, mitigation of transportation problems, enhancement of parks and open spaces, protection of environmental features, utilization of sustainable development practices, wise management of water and sewer services, protection of cultural and historic resources, and support for regional growth management planning,” in its recognition of Parsippany’s efforts.
“Parsippany is the largest town by population in the Highlands Region, and it’s important that this community lead by example. I have confidence that our work towards Highlands conformance will be a model for those towns in the region that have yet to pursue Highlands membership,” Soriano said.
Mayor Soriano has directed the township’s grant writer to immediately begin pursuing funding opportunities stemming from this critical step forward in Parsippany’s progress.