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

Capitol Report

January 2, 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

The following is a list of laws that were signed by the governor during the 2010-2011 legislative session.

ADMINISTRATIVE LAW

P.L.2011, c.33 (PDF) (Burzichelli) Establishes a new procedure in the Administrative Procedure Act to allow substantial changes to agency rule-making upon adoption. On March 1, 2011, A-2720 was signed by the governor.

ANIMAL LAW

P.L.2011, c.77 (PDF) (Madden) Enhances the penalty for killing a police dog or dog engaged in search and rescue efforts. On June 21, 2011, S-2541 was signed by the governor.

BUSINESS LAW

P.L.2010, c.15 (PDF) (Gill) (NJSBA supports) Eliminates the 10-day advance notification of a proposed effective date of certain shareholder action. On May 6, 2010, S-895 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.27 (PDF) (Gill) (NJSBA-DRAFTED) (NJSBA supports) 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 March 1, 2011, S-914 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.30 (PDF) (Ruiz) Concerns creation of benefit corporations. On March 1, 2011, S-2170 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.31 (Sarlo) (PDF) Maintains the right of corporate directors and officers to indemnification under certain circumstances. On March 1, 2011, S-2493 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.36 (PDF) (Diegnan) Provides a corporation with the right to renounce the corporate opportunity doctrine. On March 1, 2011, A-3253 was signed by the governor.

CIVIL TRIAL BAR

P.L.2010, c.88 (PDF) (Carroll) Includes midwives within definition of "licensed person" for purposes of affidavits of merit in certain actions filed on or after the effective date. On Nov. 12, 2010, A-1392 was signed by the governor.

CRIMINAL LAW

P.L.2010, c.110 (PDF) (Rice) (NJSBA takes no position) Clarifies that a gang-related incident offense report is to be forwarded to the superintendent of the State Police for inclusion in the Uniform Crime Report. On Jan 21, 2011, S-1537 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.67 (PDF) (Sarlo) (NJSBA opposes) Removes certain required parole board reviews of parole eligibility dates; repeals the early release law. On May 9, 2011, S-2308 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.104 (PDF) (Sacco) Expands the DNA database to include samples from certain violent arrestees. On Aug. 18, 2011, S-737 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.128 (PDF) (Lampitt) Permits a diversionary program for juveniles who are criminally charged for "sexting" or posting sexual images. On Sept. 16, 2011, A-1561 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.138 (PDF) (Riley) Imposes certain bail restrictions on persons charged with violating domestic violence restraining orders. On Nov. 7, 2011, A-1491 was signed by the governor.

ELDER AND DISABILITY LAW

P.L.2010, c.5 (PDF) (Sweeney) (NJSBA supports) Establishes a registry of offenders of individuals with developmental disabilities in the Department of Human Services. On April 30, 2010, S-825 was signed by the governor.

FAMILY LAW

P.L.2010, c.67 (PDF) (Greenwald) Requires the Department of Children and Families to provide information on home visitation resources and shaken baby syndrome to parents of newborn infants. On Sept. 9, 2010, A-1654 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.129 (PDF) (Watson Coleman) (NJSBA supports) Expands the membership of the Domestic Violence Fatality and Near Fatality Review Board. On Sept. 16, 2011, A-1748 was signed by the governor.

GOVERNMENT AND PUBLIC SECTOR

P.L.2010, c.75 (PDF) (Cryan) (NJSBA supports) Decreases certain public document copy fees; establishes the amount of the fee is dependent upon whether a document is letter-sized or legal-sized. On Sept. 10, 2010, A-559 was signed by the governor.

HEALTH AND HOSPITAL LAW

P.L.2010, c.109 (PDF) (Girgenti) (NJSBA takes no position) Upgrades penalties for assaulting certain healthcare professionals and workers at healthcare facilities and human services and veterans' facilities. On Jan 21, 2011, S-911 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.42 (PDF) (Vitale) Permits certain patient data to be reported to the Department of Health and Senior Services under the Health Care Facility-Associated Infection Reporting and Prevention Act. On April 6, 2011, S-817 was signed by the governor.

INSURANCE LAW

P.L.2010, c.120 (PDF) (Rodriguez) Establishes the Interstate Insurance Product Regulation Compact. On Jan. 5, 2011, A-483 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.25 (PDF) (Schaer) Regulates captive insurers. On Feb. 21, 2011, A-2360 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.11 (PDF) (Scutari) Concerns priority of claims against certain insured tortfeasors as between an insurer paying personal injury protection (PIP) benefits and an injured party. On Jan. 28, 2011, S-191 was signed by the governor.

LABOR AND EMPLOYMENT LAW

P.L.2011, c.40 (Barnes) (PDF) Prohibits the practice of excluding unemployed individuals in advertisements for job vacancies. On March 29, 2011, A-3359 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.118 (PDF) (Sweeney) Concerns employee leasing companies. On Aug. 19, 2011, S-2164 was signed by the governor.

LAND USE

P.L.2010, c.9 (PDF) (Rice) (NJSBA supports) Modifies the development application process under the Municipal Land Use Law. On May 5, 2010, S-82 was signed by the governor.

MUNICPAL COURT PRACTICE

P.L.2011, c.5 (PDF) (Diegnan) Prohibits the use of wireless telephones or electronic communication devices by operators of public transit vehicles in certain situations. On Jan. 25, 2011, A-407 was signed by the governor.

PUBLIC UTILITIES

P.L.2010, c.90 (PDF) (Chivukula) (NJSBA takes no position) Authorizes companies under the Board of Public Utilities’ jurisdiction to bill customers electronically upon customers' request. On Nov. 30, 2010, A-909 was signed by the governor.

RENEWABLE ENERGY, CLEANTECH AND CLIMATE CHANGE

P.L.2010, c.101 (PDF) (Quijano) Requires state entities to purchase biofuels in place of fossil fuels when reasonable, prudent and cost-effective. On Dec. 8, 2010, A-1052 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.9 (PDF) (Smith, B.) Establishes a long-term capacity agreement pilot program to promote construction of qualified electric-generation facilities. On Jan. 28, 2011, S-2381 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.126 (PDF) (Chivukula) (NJSBA takes no position) Provides for equal opportunity for businesses that pay societal benefits charges to apply for certain energy-related incentives and funding. On Sept. 16, 2011, A-906 was signed by the governor.

SCHOOL LAW

P.L.2010, c.122 (Vainieri Huttle) (NJSBA supports) Establishes the Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act. On Jan. 5, 2011, A-3466 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.64 (PDF) (Wolfe) Directs the Department of Education to develop a school district dating violence policy, and requires school districts to provide dating violence education in the health curriculum. On May 4, 2011, A-2920 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.132 (PDF) (Wagner) Allows the parent of a public school pupil eligible for transportation services to waive the pupil's right to those services for the school year. On Sept. 16, 2011, A-3399 was signed by the governor.

WOMEN IN THE PROFESSION

P.L.2010, c.107 (PDF) (Rice) Requires state entities to examine the opportunity of minority and women-owned financial institutions to serve as senior managing underwriters; imposes reporting requirements; and enables establishment of aspirational levels of utilization and relative compensation, supplementing Chapter 32 of Title 52 of the Revised Statutes. On Jan. 21, 2011, S-104 was signed by the governor.

P.L.2011, c.115 (PDF) (Weinberg) (NJSBA supports) Repeals obsolete statutes concerning the status of women. On Aug. 18, 2011, S-2665 was signed by the governor.

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.