December 21, 2010
Re: Legislative Recap
- COAH bill Held
- Redevelopment bill held
- Reserve for Uncollected Taxes
- S-2405, concerning liability claims, Amended
- Other Legislative Action
Here is a summary of legislative developments from the Senate voting session yesterday.
I. COAH bill Held
S-1/A-3447, which abolishes COAH and makes other changes to the State’s affordable housing laws, was held and not voted on by the full Senate. Our thanks to Senate President Sweeney and Senator Ray Lesniak for agreeing to hold the bill and those who reached out to their Senators to express the concerns we outlined in both our December 17 Dear Mayor letter and our December 15 Dear Mayor letter.
The Senate meets next on January 6, 2011, and we expect that at that time amendments to S-1/A-3447 will be moved. We are hopeful that the amendments address the shortcomings of the current bill and the concerns of local governments.
More on this can be read in today’s Philadelphia Inquirer story.
II. Redevelopment bill held
S-1451, which would revise the laws concerning local redevelopment, relocation assistance and eminent domain, was also held from a vote yesterday. The bill was brought to the floor and debated, but after a motion to amend the bill on the floor, it was pulled from discussion.
The League opposed this legislation because it will have a negative impact on redevelopment and hinder local governments’ tools to promote economic growth. It is not known when or if this bill will be brought back for a vote.
For more on this bill, please see our December 8 Dear Mayor letter.
III. Reserve for Uncollected Taxes
Senator Sarlo has introduced the companion to Assemblymen McKeon and Burzichelli’s bill to permit a municipality to exclude the Reserved for Uncollected Taxes in excess of 2% from the cap calculation.
We urge you to adopt the sample resolution (WORD or PDF) calling on the State Legislature and Governor to exempt the Reserve for Uncollected Taxes from the 2% cap.
For more on this bill, please see our December 14 Dear Mayor letter.
IV. S-2405, concerning liability claims, Amended
S-2405 was reported out of the Senate Judiciary Committee with amendments. The amendments addressed our concerns; in particular, it removed a new section that would strip of the protection of the New Jersey Tort Claim Act for municipalities in cases where an employee sexually abuses a minor. Therefore, we have removed our objections.
For more on this bill, please see our December 7 Dear Mayor letter.
V. Other Legislative Action
The Senate approved the following bills, which the League supported:
- A-3094/S-2180, which permit the Department of Transportation to contract with a county or municipality for certain work oh highways to prevent public hazards. This bill now goes back to the Assembly, which previously approved the bill, for concurrence before headed to the Governor.
- S-1446, which authorizes the display of flashing amber warning lights on sanitation vehicles. This bill now heads to the Governor’s desk.
- S-1877, which authorizes hiring preferences for veterans in non-civil service jurisdictions. This bill now heads to the Assembly for consideration.
Questions on the above bills can be directed to Mike Cerra at firstname.lastname@example.org or (609) 695-3481 x120 or Lori Buckelew at email@example.com or (609) 695-3481 x112.
Very Truly Yours,
William G. Dressel,