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3rd Circuit Rules that Citizens Have The Right to Film Law Enforcement Officers

Posted in Uncategorized
As reported in the New Jersey Law Journal, in the case entitled Fields v. City of Philadelphia, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit recently joined five other circuits in ruling that the First Amendment protects individuals’ rights to film police officers performing their official duties. The Third Circuit decision involved two civil rights… Continue Reading

New Jersey State Senate Approves Bill by 31-0 Margin to Pay State Workers Frozen Out of Their Jobs During Governmental Shutdown

Posted in Uncategorized
As reported in the NJ Observer, public employees frozen out of their jobs during the three-day government shutdown would receive back pay under a bill that passed the state Senate in a 31-0 vote Thursday. Gov. Chris Christie has said he would sign the back-pay legislation, should it pass the Assembly. The bill was introduced in… Continue Reading

New Jersey State Senate to Vote on Supplemental Appropriations Bill to Pay Public Employees That Were Involuntarily Furloughed

Posted in Uncategorized
On Thursday, July 13, 2017, The New Jersey State Senate will vote on a supplemental appropriations bill to pay workers who were unable to work during the State governmental shutdown that was imposed over the last July 4th weekend.  This bill would amend the 2018 budget appropriations bill to ensure that those workers that were involuntarily furloughed be paid for… Continue Reading

Intelligence Sharing Agreement Between Obama and Cuba Fails to Include the Return of Convicted NJ Fugitive that Murdered a NJ State Trooper

Posted in Uncategorized
As reported in NJ.COM, The head of the New Jersey State Police, Colonel Rick Fuentes, renounced an agreement struck between the Obama administration and Cuba to share information on international criminal activity because it did not require the return of convicted cop killer Joanne Chesimard. Some Republicans also renounced the deal partly because of objections to… Continue Reading

USDOT States that Painting a “Thin Blue Line” in between a Double Yellow Highway Dividing Line is Illegal

Posted in Uncategorized
As reported in NJ.Com, the U.S. Department of Transportation has opined that painting blue lines in between double yellow highway dividing lines is an unsafe practice and must therefore be removed.  In October, many New Jersey towns painted blue lines in the middle of downtown roads to show support for law enforcement.  The support at… Continue Reading

Christie’s Attempt to Dismantle the NJ Civil Service System through the Initiation of “Job Banding” is Illegal

Posted in Uncategorized
As reported in NJ.Com, a New Jersey appeals court Thursday struck down controversial changes Governor Christie’s administration unilaterally made to the state’s civil service system.  The Appellate Division on the New Jersey Superior Court stated in its decision that the state’s Civil Service Commission was wrong to push forward with the “job-banding” changes over the objections of the state… Continue Reading

Blue Justice Podcast #01 (Negotiating Collective Bargaining Agreements)

Posted in Contract Negotiations, Interest Arbitration, Public Employment Labor Law, Uncategorized
Time for some negotiation-education! In our very first episode of the Blue Justice Podcast, Frank Crivelli explains why experience is so important when it comes to collective bargaining and negotiating a union’s contract. We plan on posting a new podcast on a regular basis, every other week or so, so please check back periodically for… Continue Reading

Bill Limiting Solitary Confinement in New Jersey State Prisons is Another Bad Idea

Posted in Uncategorized
As reported in NJ.Com, a bill strictly limiting the use of solitary confinement in New Jersey’s prisons is headed to Governor Chris Christie’s desk after being passed by the State Assembly.  The bill requires prisons and jails to use solitary confinement only as a last resort, restricting its use to 15 consecutive days or 20 days… Continue Reading

Troopers Start Wearing Body Cams

Posted in Uncategorized
As reported by NJ.com, troopers at three State Police stations began patrolling with body-worn cameras this weekend as the Division prepares to outfit every officer on the road with the technology. Uniformed troopers assigned to Bordentown, Bellmawr, and Red Lion stations turned on their cameras on Saturday as part of an “initial deployment program,” according… Continue Reading

Bill to Require AG Investigations of Deaths in Police Custody Advances

Posted in Uncategorized
As reported by Observer.com, a bill that would have the New Jersey state Attorney General’s office investigate all civilian deaths at the hands of police advanced in a legislative committee Monday. Against misgivings from a representative of the Attorney General’s office, the Assembly Judiciary Committee released the bill following a 4-2 vote. Currently, civilian deaths… Continue Reading

New Jersey Senate Passes Bill Placing Armed, Retired Police Officers in Schools

Posted in Pay and Overtime, Uncategorized
As reported by N.J.com, a bill creating a new class of police officer — and stationing armed, retired cops inside New Jersey schools — passed the New Jersey State Senate on Thursday after lawmakers adopted an amendment recommended by Governor Christie. The measure (S2983), which was unanimously approved, establishes “Class Three” special police officers designated… Continue Reading

NJ Republican Seeks to Reduce Government Health Care Costs in Exchange for Constitutional Amendment “Obligating” State Pension Payment

Posted in Uncategorized
While Chapter 78 increased the average healthcare contributions required of public employees based upon a sliding percentage of the cost of coverage, if Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon’s proposal is implemented, public workers can expect to pay higher out-of-pocket costs toward coverage provided under a lower-level plan. In exchange, the Assemblyman’s plan provides for a constitutional amendment obligating the… Continue Reading

To Move or Not To Move…That is the Question. A Practical Examination of the Decisions that Must be Made by a Law Enforcement Union Following the Expiration of a Collective Bargaining Agreement

Posted in Uncategorized
Most recently, our office has received numerous inquiries from various law enforcement unions throughout the state regarding the effect of the Appellate Division’s decision in two (2) seminal cases upon contractually mandated step movement on a salary guide once a collective negotiations agreement expires. The two cases that are at issue are entitled In the… Continue Reading

The Costs of Chapter 78, P.L., 2011 on New Jersey Retirees’ Healthcare Contributions

Posted in Public Employment Labor Law, Retiree Benefits, Uncategorized
Chapter 78, P.L., 2011 (hereinafter referred to as “Chapter 78”) went into effect on June 28, 2011, and has increased the average healthcare contributions required of public employees substantially. However, not all employees and retirees are equally effected. This article will briefly outline the effect Chapter 78 will have on newly and prospective retirees. Chapter… Continue Reading

Investigation Concludes that Brick Police Officers were Justified in Using Deadly Force in 2015 Shooting

Posted in Uncategorized
As reported by the Brick Patch online, the shooting of a 21-year-old Brick Township man in August 2015 during a confrontation with police has been ruled a justifiable use of deadly force, Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph Coronato announced Thursday. In a statement released Thursday morning, Coronato said the investigation into the Aug. 23 shooting that… Continue Reading

Trenton First Responders to Receive Bulletproof Vests & Raises

Posted in Contract Negotiations, Public Employment Labor Law, Uncategorized
As reported by Trentonian.com, Trenton firefighters will receive bulletproof vests and raises as part of a labor contract approved by city council on Dec. 17. “Our firefighters — they go inside houses — sometimes in situations where they don’t really know what the circumstances are,” Qareeb Bashir, the city’s fire & emergency services director, rationalized… Continue Reading

A.G. Deems Counter-Terrorism Seminar “Not Appropriate”

Posted in Uncategorized
The New Jersey Attorney General’s Office will issue new guidelines on police training after the “Know Your Enemy” counter-terrorism seminar for law enforcement was conducted in Ocean County last week. “The private training program that took place in Ocean County last week clearly was not appropriate training and is not the type of training we want our police officers… Continue Reading

Hamilton Police Department Receives State Accreditation

Posted in Uncategorized
 As reported by NJ.com, the Hamilton Township Police Department has received accreditation from the New Jersey State Association of Chiefs of Police.  The Chiefs of Police’s accreditation is a voluntary program in which departments conduct a self-analysis for meeting over 100 standards of operations and best practices.  Trained, independent assessors then review and verify the… Continue Reading

Police Fight Health Cost Hike for Retirees in Berkeley Twp

Posted in Uncategorized
As reported by APP.com, police officers sent a message to Mayor Carmen F. Amato Jr. and Township Council members Monday: Don’t touch our retiree’s health insurance. “This is way past midstream,” said Don Rowley, a Berkeley officer who is president of Local 237 of the Policemen’s Benevolent Association. “I have members that have been retired… Continue Reading

Moody’s Warns of Teacher Pension Risk to N.J. School Districts under Christie Plan

Posted in Uncategorized
  As reported by NJ.com, a new report from a Wall Street rating agency warns that Gov. Chris Christie’s seemingly dormant plan to overhaul government worker pension and health benefits to save the State billions of dollars could come at a risk to school districts if Christie’s proposed reforms don’t play out as envisioned. Moody’s also… Continue Reading

More Employee Misconduct at Bo Robinson Private Halfway House

Posted in Uncategorized
As reported by The Trentonian.com, an employee at private halfway house Albert “Bo” Robinson Assessment and Treatment Center, better known simply as Bo Robinson, is again being accused of having inappropriate sexual relations with an inmate. This is the second time since June a Bo Robinson worker was terminated for allegedly engaging in sexual relations with an… Continue Reading

NJ Pledges Millions To Equip Officers With Body Cams

Posted in Uncategorized
As reported by NJ.com, New Jersey has pledged $4 million to equip every New Jersey State Trooper and thousands more local police officers with body cameras as demand for the technology rises in the wake of several high-profile police-involved shootings in the United States. Body cameras, though increasingly ubiquitous in policing, are not yet standard gear for… Continue Reading
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