NEW JERSEY (CBSNewYork) — The New Jersey Senate has voted to override proposed environmental rules, which opponents say would hurt water quality and increase flooding risks.

As WCBS 880’s Kelly Waldron reported, environmental officials are defending the rules, claiming they were designed to streamline a regulatory process that developers find confusing.

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But Jeff Tittel, of the New Jersey Sierra Club, said the rules are actually a major rollback of protections for clean water and against flooding.

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“Under these rules, you would be able to build more development closer to streams and in flood hazard areas,” he said. “Those are areas that flood fairly frequently.”

Tittel said the biggest concern would be the elimination of stream buffers.

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He’s hopeful the Assembly follows the Senate’s lead when it resumes sessions next month.