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

Capitol Report

August 17, 2009

By Tamika Wilson

This is a status report on recently passed and pending legislation and regulations, gubernatorial nominations and appointments of interest to lawyers. It is compiled by the legislative department of the New Jersey State Bar Association. Following each bill is the number, sponsor's name, the NJSBA position, if any, bill description and status.

On the Governor's Desk

SCHOOL LAW

A-930 (Scalera) (Under review by the NJSBA) Directs the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association to establish adapted athletic programs. On June 18, the bill substituted for S-655, passed in the Senate (39-0), and was sent to the governor.

A-1943 (Schaer) (Under review by the NJSBA) Establishes a pilot program in the Department of Education to provide instruction in personal finance to high school seniors. On June 18, the bill substituted for S-2211, passed in the Senate (35-1), and was sent to the governor.

A-2655 (Burzichelli) (Under review by the NJSBA) Requires a law enforcement agency to inform a school principal of certain crimes committed by students. On June 25, the bill passed in the Assembly (79-0) and was sent to the governor.

TAXATION

S-562 (Sweeney) (Under review by the NJSBA) Provides triggers for reductions of employer unemployment insurance taxes. On June 18, the bill substituted for A-1503, passed in the Assembly (77-0), and was sent to the governor.

S-661 (Madden) (Under review by the NJSBA) Revises the criteria for eligibility to receive a senior and disabled homestead property tax reimbursement. On June 25, the bill passed in the Senate (38-0) and in the Assembly (77-2), and was sent to the governor.

S-2372 (Sarlo) (Under review by the NJSBA) Permits revenue received by a municipality as payments in lieu of taxes to increase the cap base upon which permissible increases to final appropriations are calculated under local cap law. On June 25, the bill substituted for A-3464, passed in the Assembly (54-25), and the Senate (27-10), and was sent to the governor.

S-2356 (Sweeney) (Under review by the NJSBA) Establishes a pilot program in Gloucester County, transferring the municipal tax assessment function to the county through the appointment of a county assessor and deputy county assessors. On June 25, the bill substituted for A-3722, passed in the Senate (25-7), in the Assembly (55-23-1), and was sent to the governor.

A-2623 (McKeon) (Under review by the NJSBA) Extends program eligibility to areas located in municipalities contiguous to those currently qualified to participate in the Neighborhood Revitalization Tax Credit Program. On June 25, the bill passed in the Senate (26-12), and was sent to the governor.

Executive Orders

Executive Order No. 145 Establishes a task force to review, evaluate and make recommendations regarding New Jersey's statutory and regulatory schemes and programmatic initiatives to curb the illegal possession, use, and trafficking of firearms and, more specifically, the anticipated passage of 'one-handgun-per-month' legislation.

Executive Order No. 148 Orders and directs each department or other state entity to take appropriate action to immediately suspend any approval or application for any development project or other related undertaking located in any municipality where a mayor charged with a public corruption crime remains in public office.

Reorganization Plans

Reorganization Plan No. 002-2009 On June 25, 2009, the governor issued a reorganization plan, transferring certain specified functions, powers and duties of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey as are necessary to establish, organize, operate and maintain a four-year allopathic medical school in the city of Camden at Rowan University.

Reorganization Plan No. 003-2009 On June 25, 2009, the governor issued a reorganization plan to transfer the responsibility for the promulgation of standard statements regarding implied consent to chemical breath test statutes from the chief administrator of the Motor Vehicle Commission to the attorney general.

Regulatory Matters

Below please find proposed regulations with a deadline for comment of September 18, unless otherwise noted:

CRIMINAL LAW

N.J.A.C. 13:96 Provides changes to Juvenile Justice Commission rules regarding juvenile parole and transition services.

N.J.A.C. 13:101-4.1 and 6.17 Provides changes to Juvenile Justice Commission rules regarding juvenile discipline.

ENVIRONMENTAL LAW

N.J.A.C. 7:1I Provides changes to Department of Environmental Protection rules regarding processing damage claims pursuant to the Sanitary Landfill Closure and Contingency Fund Act.

INSURANCE LAW

N.J.A.C. 11:22-1.6 Provides changes to Department of Banking and Insurance, Division of Insurance, rules regarding health benefit plans and prompt payment of claims.

LABOR AND EMPLOYMENT LAW

N.J.A.C. 12:66 Provides changes to Department of Labor and Workforce Development rules regarding prevailing wages and safety training for construction work on public utilities.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT LAW

N.J.A.C. 5:15 Provides changes to Department of Community Affairs, Division of Codes and Standards, rules regarding emergency shelters for the homeless.

REAL PROPERTY TRUST AND ESTATE LAW

N.J.A.C. 5:93 Provides changes to substantive rules of the New Jersey Council on Affordable Housing for the period beginning on June 6, 1994.

WOMEN IN THE PROFESSION

N.J.A.C. 5:60 Provides changes to Department of Community Affairs, Division of Women, rules regarding displaced homemaker programs.

WORKERS' COMPENSATION

N.J.A.C. 12:235-4.1, 4.2, 4.4, 4.5, 4.6, 4.8 through 4.13, 4.15, 4.16 and 4.17; 12:235-4.3, 4.7 and 4.14 Provides changes to Division of Workers' Compensation rules regarding informal processes.

The following rules were recently adopted:

BANKING LAW

N.J.A.C. 3:32; 3:32-1.1 Provides changes to Department of Banking and Insurance, Division of Banking, rules regarding conversions of associations.

TAXATION

N.J.A.C. 18:7-20.1 Adopts amendments to Division of Taxation rules regarding corporate business tax for S corporations.

Public Notices

ENVIRONMENTAL LAW

Take notice that the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection published a list of vehicles that qualify as zero emission vehicles (ZEV), advanced technology partial zero emission vehicles (AT-PZEV), or partial zero emission vehicles (PZEV) for 2008-09. For an updated list go to http://www.state.nj.us/dep/cleanvehicles/ or call 609-530-4035.

CRIMINAL LAW

Take notice that the New Jersey State Board of Parole announced the availability of state funds for the Specialized Reentry Program for Women (SRPW) for fiscal year 2010 to provide specialized supportive reentry services to address the multi-dimensional problems and unique needs of adult female offenders under the supervision of the New Jersey State Parole Board. For more information, call 609-777-0181. Written proposals must be submitted by 3 p.m. on August 21.

Take notice that the Division of Criminal Justice announced the availability of funds for the Megan's Law and Local Law Enforcement Assistance program, which offers formula grants to each county prosecutor's office to assist in the implementation of Megan's Law to pay for salaries, overtime, training, supplies, or equipment to fulfill law enforcement needs. Applications will be mailed to each county prosecutor's office. For more information, or additional applications, call 609-292-5939. Applications must be completed and filed within 60 days from the date listed on the notification letter.

Note: "Under review by the NJSBA" means that the bill is currently being examined by NJSBA sections, committees and/or Board of Trustees and a final position has not yet been reached on the measure.