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

Capitol Report

January 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.

 

NJSBA Action in Trenton

S-1 (PDF) (Weinberg) (NJSBA supports) Enacts the Marriage Equality and Religious Exemption Act. On Jan. 24, Richard H. Steen, NJSBA immediate past president, and Thomas J. Snyder, of Einhorn Harris Ascher Barbarito & Frost PC, testified at a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee in support of this legislation, which was introduced on Jan. 10.

 

Pending Legislation

 

CRIMINAL LAW

S-1045 (Connors) (NJSBA opposes) Imposes mandatory minimum terms of incarceration on juveniles who use guns to commit acts that, if committed by adults, would constitute serious crimes. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Law and Public Safety Committee.

 

S-1146 (PDF) (Turner) (NJSBA opposes) Authorizes the court to issue restraining orders, as a condition of release on bail, to defendants charged with a crime. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

S-1150 (PDF) (Weinberg) (NJSBA supports) Establishes a civil cause of action for gender-motivated violence. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

ELDER AND DISABILITY LAW

S-1034 (Allen) (NJSBA supports) Requires the Division of Developmental Disabilities to study the need for placement trusts for persons with developmental disabilities. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee.

 

FAMILY LAW

S-1029 (PDF) (Greenstein) (Under review by the NJSBA) Establishes the Domestic Violence Victim Protection Pilot Program. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

S-1031 (PDF) (Greenstein) (NJSBA opposes) Creates the offense of impairing communications, which would constitute domestic violence in certain circumstances. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

S-1144 (Turner) (NJSBA opposes) Clarifies the intent of the Legislature that the attempt or conspiracy to commit certain offenses may constitute acts of domestic violence. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

S-1151 (PDF) (Weinberg) (NJSBA opposes) Establishes Monica's Law, concerning the Domestic Violence Risk Assessment Pilot Program. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

S-1152 (PDF) (Weinberg) (NJSBA supports) Directs the Division on Women to conduct an audit of the coordination of community responses to domestic violence. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Community and Urban Affairs Committee.

 

S-1153 (PDF) (Weinberg) (NJSBA supports) Establishes the Domestic Violence Health Care Response Act. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

S-1157 (PDF) (Weinberg) (NJSBA takes no position) Authorizes certified celebrants to solemnize marriages. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

S-1168 (PDF) (Weinberg) (NJSBA supports w/ amendments) Allows adoptees access to nonidentifying family medical history information. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee.

 

JUDICIAL ADMINISTRATION

S-1145 (PDF) (Turner) (NJSBA opposes) Bars the disclosure of personal identifying information of grand jury witnesses, except for their names; creates a fourth-degree offense for attorney disclosure. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

SJR-26 (PDF) (Allen) Provides for a forfeiture by wrongdoing exception to the hearsay rule by amending the Rules of Evidence. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

LAND USE

SCR-51 (PDF) (Allen) Proposes a constitutional amendment to limit exercise of eminent domain to acquisition of land for essential public purposes. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Community and Urban Affairs Committee.

 

LOCAL GOVERNMENT LAW

S-1206 (PDF) (Gill) (NJSBA supports) Provides for state assumption of the costs of the county prosecutors' offices. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

MILITARY LAW AND VETERAN’S AFFAIRS

S-1051 (Connors) (NJSBA supports) Concerns custody and parenting time for military parents. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

MUNICIPAL COURT PRACTICE

S-1064 (PDF) (Connors) (NJSBA opposes) Criminalizes fifth or subsequent drunk-driving offenses. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Law and Public Safety Committee.

 

S-1069 (PDF) (Connors) (NJSBA opposes) Increases prison time for certain persons convicted of a motor vehicle offense when a license has been suspended for driving under the influence. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Law and Public Safety Committee.

 

S-1128 (PDF) (Turner) (NJSBA supports) Establishes a conditional intervention program in municipal court for certain first-time offenders. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

S-1207 (PDF) (Gill) (NJSBA takes no position) Establishes a pilot program in the Department of Law and Public Safety requiring the electronic recording of certain police interrogations. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

 

S-1174 (PDF) (Weinberg) (NJSBA opposes) Provides enhanced penalties for drunk drivers with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.17 percent or greater. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Law and Public Safety Committee.

 

REAL PROPERTY TRUST AND ESTATE LAW

S-1105 (PDF) (Gill) (NJSBA takes no position) Creates the New Jersey Homeowners' Equity Protection Act. On Jan. 23, the bill was introduced and referred to the Senate Commerce Committee.