December 12, 2014
RE: Weekly Policy Update
Here is a brief update on legislative and policy issues of interest to municipalities.
I. Transportation Trust Fund TTF
The League, along with the New Jersey Association of Counties (NJAC) and the American Automobile Association (AAA) of NJ participated in Senate President Sweeney’s press conference highlighting his efforts to double the local funding for transportation infrastructure funding. For more, please see the December 11 Dear Mayor letter at: http://www.njslom.org/letters/2014-1211-Transportation-Aid.html.
Contact: Jon Moran, firstname.lastname@example.org, 609-695-3481 x121
II. Paid Sick Leave
On Monday, the Assembly Budget Committee will consider A-2354, which would require each employer to provide paid sick leave to its employees. The League, along with the New Jersey Association of Counties and the New Jersey School Boards Association, have requested that A-2354 be amended to exempt local governments. Specifically, the League’s previous testimony highlighted that the 194 municipalities in Civil Service are required to provide sick leave. Further, the League noted that for other municipalities, sick leave is the subject of collective negotiations and that these sick leave provisions are extended to non-union and at-will employees. Municipal employees already receive sick leave and the League noted that the municipalities which have passed local sick leave ordinances exempted public employers and employees from the requirements for these same reasons. Please contact your Assembly representatives and ask that A-2354 be amended to exempt local governments. Contact: Mike Cerra, email@example.com or 609-695-3481, ext. 120.
III. Police Body Cameras
The Senate Law and Public Safety Committee released S-2649, which would establish a Task Force to study and ultimately make recommendations regarding the use of police body cameras. Originally, the Committee was to consider a bill which would have required police body cameras, but instead pulled that bill from the agenda and considered a bill to refer the issue to a Task Force. Based on the League’s testimony, the Committee then amended the bill to add two Mayors to the Task Force, which will be appointed by the League President. S-2649 now heads to the Senate floor. An Assembly companion has not yet been introduced.
Contact: Mike Cerra, firstname.lastname@example.org or 609-695-3481, ext. 120.
IV. Buy American
S-1811/A-3059 which requires the use of goods made in the United States for public contracts and requires businesses that receive public contracts or development assistance to disclose job exportation information, was amended and approved by the Assembly Budget Committee on Thursday.
This legislation would significantly amend the “Buy American” provision of the Local Public Contracts law by expanding the definition and requiring a waiver process, modeled after the federal law, to purchase goods, manufactured products and services not made in America. The League expressed a number of practical concerns with the legislation in its testimony. (For a summary of concerns raised by the League on this bill, please see the Dear Mayor letter of June 12 (http://www.njslom.org/letters/2014-0612-Buy-American.html).
The League is currently reviewing the amendments to the bill, which were extensive, and will update you in the upcoming days. Contact: Lori Buckelew, email@example.com, 609-695-3481 x112.
We hope you find this helpful.
Very truly yours,
William G. Dressel, Jr.