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

Capitol Report

January 17, 2011

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. It is compiled by the government affairs department of the New Jersey State Bar Association. 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.

On the Governor's Desk

S-1 (Lesniak) Reforms the procedures concerning provision of affordable housing; abolishes the Council on Affordable Housing. On Jan. 10, the bill passed in the Assembly (45-32) and was sent to the governor.

S-914 (Gill) (NJSBA supports) (NJSBA drafted) Allows a professional corporation to use or register an alternate name; allows use of certain abbreviations in certain business names; updates references for certain state business filings. On Jan. 10, the bill passed in the Assembly (78-0) and was sent to the governor.

S-1248 (Rice) Requires a local unit or authority to provide the director of the Division of Local Government Services with a report concerning lawsuits to which it is a party before the budget is approved. On Jan. 10, the Senate voted (39-0) to concur with the governor's recommendations.

S-2126 (Whelan) Permits development of solar and wind facilities and structures on landfills and resource extraction operations under certain circumstances. On Jan. 10, the bill passed in both the Senate (32-1) and the Assembly (72-3-3) and was sent to the governor.

S-2170 (Ruiz) Concerns the creation of benefit corporations. On Jan. 10, the bill passed in both the Senate (38-0) and the Assembly (77-0) and was sent to the governor.

S-2381 (Smith) Establishes a long-term capacity agreement pilot program to promote construction of qualified electric generation facilities. On Jan. 10, the bill passed in both the Senate (21-6) and the Assembly (57-15-5) and was sent to the governor.

A-2215 (McKeon) Permits a developer to qualify for a low-interest loan from the New Jersey Economic Development Authority when building a high-performance green building. On Jan. 10, the bill passed in both the Senate (37-0) and the Assembly (74-2-1) and was sent to the governor.

A-2529 (Chivukula) Concerns energy efficiency and renewable energy requirements. On Jan. 10, the bill passed in both the Senate (25-12) and the Assembly 54-21-1) and was sent to the governor.

A-2720 (Burzichelli) Establishes new a procedure in the Administrative Procedure Act to allow substantial changes to agency rule-making upon adoption. On Jan. 10, the bill passed in both the Senate (24-8) and the Assembly (78-0) and was sent to the governor.

Pending Legislation

Family Law

 

S-2586/A-3672 (Lesniak/Quigley) (NJSBA supports) Provides for access to an adoptee's original birth certificate under certain circumstances. On Dec. 30, S-2586 was introduced and referred to the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee. A-3672 was introduced on Jan. 6 and referred to the Assembly Human Services Committee.

A-3350 (Spencer) Allows licensing authorities to grant a license to certain child support obligors under certain circumstances. On Jan. 10, the bill passed in the Assembly (78-0)

Judicial Administration

 

S-2628 (Scutari) (Under review by the NJSBA) Authorizes an exception to the hearsay rule for certain out-of-court statements by witnesses in cases involving a crime. On Jan. 10, the bill was released from the Senate Judiciary Committee and is awaiting Senate vote.

Real Property Trust and Estate Law

 

S-2234 (Kyrillos) (Under review by the NJSBA) Establishes a real property assessment demonstration program in Monmouth County. On Jan. 10, the bill passed in the Senate (39-0) and was referred to the Assembly Housing and Local Government Committee.

Nominations

The following nominations were reported by the Senate Judiciary Committee on Jan. 10:

GOVERNOR'S COUNCIL ON ALCOHOLISM AND DRUG ABUSE
Barbara Sprechman, of Jackson

KEAN UNIVERSITY-BOARD OF TRUSTEES
Helyn Payne Baltimore, of East Orange

MONTCLAIR STATE UNIVERSITY-BOARD OF TRUSTEES
Thomas Maguire, of Long Valley
John L. McGoldrick, of Princeton, NJSBA member

NEW JERSEY CITY UNIVERSITY-BOARD OF TRUSTEES
Cynthia Maner Campbell, of Jersey City
Owen M. Ryan, of Basking Ridge
Edward A. Whittaker, of Hoboken

NEW JERSEY INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY UNIVERSITY-
BOARD OF TRUSTEES

Elizabeth Garcia, of North Bergen
Anthony J. Knapp, of North Branch
Anthony R. Slimowicz, of Long Hill Township, NJSBA member
Kathleen Wielkopolski, of Chester

NEW JERSEY SCHOOLS DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY
Edward S. Walsh, of Basking Ridge, NJSBA member

NEW JERSEY TURNPIKE AUTHORITY
Ronald Gravino, of Edison

RAMAPO COLLEGE OF NEW JERSEY-BOARD OF TRUSTEES
Thomas Zelante, of Morristown, NJSBA member

RICHARD STOCKTON STATE COLLEGE-BOARD OF TRUSTEES
Leo B. Schoffer, of Margate, NJSBA member

VICTIMS OF CRIME COMPENSATION REVIEW BOARD
Edward Beck, of South Dennis

Public Notices

The New Jersey Law Revision Commission will meet on Jan. 20 to discuss the following agenda:

  1. Elective Spousal Share—Consideration of a draft tentative report proposing revisions to N.J.S. 2A:34-23h. and N.J.S. 3B:8-1, addressing problems that arise when a litigant dies in the midst of a divorce proceeding.
  2. Uniform Partition of Heirs Property Act—Consideration of a memorandum regarding this uniform law.
  3. New Jersey Debt-Management Services Act—Distribution of a document submitted to Assemblyman Connors' office for use in revising bill A-1949. This is for information only, so the commission has the latest draft of this project.
  4. Title 39-Driving While Intoxicated—Consideration of a memorandum proposing a revision to the statute sections pertaining to driving while intoxicated to include expanded use of the ignition interlock devices as recommended by recent studies.
  5. Pejorative Terms—Staff will provide an update on the status of the new pejorative terms project.
  6. Consideration of new projects.
  7. Approve proposed meeting dates for 2011.

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.