TRENTON – Julia Somers, Board Chair of the New Jersey League of Conservation Voters, has been appointed by Governor Philip Murphy, to the New Jersey Planning Commission.


The New Jersey State Planning Commission consists of 17 members representing state government, local government and the public. Local government and public members are appointed by the Governor and approved by the Legislature for three year terms. Members coordinate planning activities and establish statewide planning objectives in the following areas: land use, housing, economic development, transportation, natural resource conservation, agriculture and farmland retention, recreation, urban and suburban redevelopment, historic preservation, public facilities and services, and intergovernmental coordination.


“I recently attended my first meeting and I am extremely excited to join the commission and work on the issues I am passionate about such as natural resource conservation, land use, and historic preservation,” said Julia Somers, Board Chair, New Jersey LCV. “I also want to thank Governor Murphy and his administration for appointing me to the planning commission and trusting me with this important work.”


In addition to chairing the New Jersey LCV board, Somers is also Executive Director of the New Jersey Highlands Coalition, which represents a diverse network of organizations—small and large, local, regional, and statewide—and individuals. Its mission is to represent their common goal to protect, enhance and restore the resources of the New Jersey Highlands and to preserve the quality and quantity of drinking water both for the 850,000 people who live in the Highlands as well as the more than four million people living elsewhere in the state who depend on Highlands water.


“We congratulate Julia for her important role on the State Planning Commission and we know she will lend her experience and knowledge about the direct connection of land use to drinking water quality,” said Ed Potosnak, Executive Director, New Jersey LCV. “Much appreciation to Governor Murphy, Senator Oroho, and the New Jersey Senate for their support of Julia to serve her community on the Commission.”


“For as long as I can remember I’ve always had a passion for nature and I am blessed that the work I am doing with New Jersey LCV, Highlands Coalition, and now the New Jersey Planning Commission, allows me to engage this passion and specifically help to preserve our natural resources so that all New Jerseyans can benefit,” added Somers. “With the threats from climate change and increasing development pressures the work of the New Jersey Planning Commission is even more urgent. I’m pleased to be a part of the team finding solutions.”


The New Jersey League of Conservation Voters is a non-partisan organization whose mission is to elect environmental champions, hold public officials accountable, and support laws which protect our environment and improve the quality of people’s lives.

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