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July 2, 2012

Re:      Legislative Recap
I.          A-2921/S-1900 Energy Receipt Taxes
II.         S-2011/A-2950 COAH Trust Funds
III.       S-743/A-1338 Permit Extension
IV.       S-1566/A-2168 Foreclosure Transformation Act
V.        S-533 “Common Sense Shared Service Act”
VI.       S-1534 Special Status for Private Colleges and Universities

Dear Mayor:

I.          A-2921/S-1900 Energy Receipt Taxes

Governor Christie vetoed A-2921/S-1900, bills which would have restored vital property tax relief to municipal budgets. The bills, which had garnered bipartisan support in both Houses, would have moved the State closer to compliance with the letter and spirit of the 1999 law governing distribution of funds deposited in the Energy Tax Receipts Property Tax Relief (ETR) account and the Consolidated Municipal Property Tax Relief Aid (CMPTRA) program.  This year, as in the past, these dollars will again be used to support State spending.  For more on this issue please our June 30 Dear Mayor letter.

II.        S-2011/A-2950 COAH Trust Funds

On Friday the Governor vetoed S-2011/A-2950, which would have provided municipalities a two-year extension for the commitment of their housing trust fund dollars.     In addition, budget language which would have defined “committed,” offering necessary and previously lacking guidance to municipalities, was also vetoed.   For more on this issue please see our June 30 Dear Mayor letter.

III.       S-743/A-1338 Permit Extension

The Assembly and Senate have passed S-743/A-1338, which extends the expiration date of certain permits pursuant to the “Permit Extension Act of 2008” and the bill head now heads to the Governor’s desk.  The League opposes the bill as it expands the Permit Extension Act beyond the original 2008 legislation and overrides local discretion.  The references to and reliance upon planning area in the State Plan is inconsistent with the proposed State Strategic Plain, in which the planning areas are being phased-out.

IV.       S-1566/A-2168 Foreclosure Transformation Act

Governor Christie vetoed S-1566/A-2168, the “New Jersey Residential Foreclosure Transformation Act”.  The bill would have established a statewide program to transition foreclosed property into affordable housing.  For more on this issue please see our February 17 Dear Mayor letter.

V.        S-533 “Common Sense Shared Service Act”

The Senate passed the amended S-533, the “Common Sense Shared Service Act”; concerns shared services agreements for certain local personnel under “Uniformed Shared Services and Consolidation Act” by a vote of 35-2.  The amendments, which were made on the Senate floor, would require the lead municipality to select as their employee one of the employees of the municipality that are party to the agreement who was employed in that same capacity prior to the agreement; requires the agreement to contain the estimate of the cost savings anticipated to be achieved by the municipalities and requires the same be with the agreement filed with the Division of Local Government Services; requires that the agreement be available for public inspection at least 2 weeks prior to the adoption; and no agreement can be adopted until copies of the agreement are provided to all affected employees at least 2 weeks before the public hearing, which shall provide an overview of the terms and agreement and the estimated cost savings,  and adoption of the resolution.  The companion bill, A-1401, now awaits consideration before the Assembly Housing and Local Government Committee.   For more on this issue please see our February 28 Dear Mayor letter.

VI. S-1534 Special Status for Private Colleges and Universities Advances in Senate

The State Senate approved, by a vote of 26-8, with 6 abstentions, S-1534, which would exempt certain private colleges and universities from local zoning and planning jurisdiction.   The League opposes this legislation and a letter was also submitted on behalf of the Mayors of the majority of the municipalities directly impacted by the bill expressing their opposition.   This bill will now join its Assembly companion and is assigned to the Assembly Higher Education Committee.  

If you have any questions on the legislation above please contact Jon Moran at, Mike Cerra at or Lori Buckelew at

Very truly yours,


William G. Dressel, Jr.
Executive Director




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