New Jersey State Bar Association - The voluntary Bar Association of New Jersey, serving members since 1899.

Capitol Report

April 30, 2012

 

This is a status report on recently passed and pending legislation, regulations, gubernatorial nominations and/or appointments of interest to lawyers. The report may also include information about appearances of NJSBA representatives before legislative committees, and the involvement of the NJSBA as amicus in appellate court matters. The government affairs department of the association compiles the report. Following each bill number is the sponsor’s name, the NJSBA position, if any, bill description and status. Full and previous versions of the Capitol Report with links to related text are available online at www.njsba.com.

 

Special Edition

 

This special edition of the Capitol Report is the first in a series of updates on NJSBA priority legislation.

 

As with all high-priority bills, the Government Relations Department communicates the NJSBA’s position on priority legislation with letters to the sponsors of the bill, members of any legislative committees to which the bill has been referred for a hearing, members of the Senate or Assembly when the bill is scheduled for a vote before either body, and the Governor. In addition, when these priority bills are scheduled for committee review in the legislature, the NJSBA will prepare and coordinate written and/or oral testimony before legislative committees, testify before legislative committees where appropriate if experts from NJSBA sections and committees are not available, and coordinate meetings with legislators, interest groups and the Governor’s Office to advance the NJSBA’s position.

 

Pending Legislation


JUDICIAL ADMINISTRATION

S-1128 (Turner)/A-1461 (Gusciora) (NJSBA supports) This measure would establish conditional intervention program in municipal court for certain first-time offenders. This legislation is currently pending review in the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee and Assembly Judiciary Committees, respectively.

S-1145 (Turner)/A-1424 (Watson Coleman) (NJSBA opposes) Qua-Daishia's Law: bars disclosure of personal identifying information contained in grand jury materials; creates fourth-degree offense for unauthorized disclosure. This legislation is currently pending review in the Senate and Assembly Judiciary committees.

S-1621 (Bucco) (NJSBA opposes) Establishes process by which a fiduciary is discharged. This legislation is currently pending review in the Senate Judiciary Committee.

S-1863 (Van Drew)/A-1566 (Wisniewski) (NJSBA supports) Provides for the appointment of certain municipal court judges at the local or county level. This legislation is currently pending review in the Assembly Judiciary Committee.

 

A-763 (Barnes) (NJSBA opposes) Authorizes the Judiciary to revise and supplement court filing fees and other statutory fees to fund a statewide digital e-court information system, to fund Legal Services of New Jersey, and to fund other justice-related programs. This legislation is currently pending review in the Senate Judiciary Committee. In March, NJSBA President Susan A. Feeney testified in opposition to this legislation before the Assembly Judiciary Committee and the Assembly Appropriations Committee.

 

LAND USE

A-1645 (Coutinho) (NJSBA opposes) Allows for modifications to land use approvals because of changed economics. This legislation is currently pending review in the Assembly Housing and Local Government Committee.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT LAW

A-1442 (Gusciora) (NJSBA opposes) Authorizes assessment of development impact fees by municipalities. This legislation is currently pending review in the Assembly Housing and Local Government Committee.

A-1521 (Burzichelli) (NJSBA supports) Modifies process for contested case hearings by OAL with regard to telephone and video conferences, delegation of final decision authority, oral decisions, checklist decision, electronic filings, and settlements. This legislation is pending review by the Assembly Regulatory Oversight and Gaming Committee.

 

MEDICAL MALPRACTICE

S-474 (Thompson) (NJSBA opposes) Eliminates the discovery rule for medical malpractice liability actions. This legislation is currently pending review in the Senate Commerce Committee.

 

S-1221 (Vitale)/A-1817 (Conaway) (NJSBA opposes) Extends Medical Malpractice Liability Insurance Premium Assistance Fund and collection of annual surcharges for five years. This legislation is currently pending review in the Senate Commerce Committee and the Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee.

A-1689 (Russo) (NJSBA opposes) Establishes a Special Medical Malpractice part in the Superior Court. This legislation is currently pending review in the Assembly Judiciary Committee.

A-1806 (Conaway) (NJSBA opposes) Concerns liability, standards of care, and insurance coverage for medical malpractice actions. This legislation is pending