Ethics panel dismisses complaints against Conaway, Turner

TRENTON – The Joint Committee on Ethical Standards dismissed complaints Tuesday brought against two legislators by the same person.

The panel dismissed for reasons of timeliness complaints lodged against Assemblyman Herb Conaway, (D-7), Delran, and Sen. Shirley Turner, (D-15), Trenton, by Gregory Smith.

In Conaway’s case, Smith alleged that Conaway’s district office did not respond when he had concerns about enforcement of regulations at a nursing home where his father resided. Conaway was vice chairman of the committee on human services at the time of the incident, around 2005, the committee was told.

In Turner’s case, Smith alleged that her district office did not respond when he had complaints about abuse allegedly suffered by his mother when she was being transported to a hospital.

But in each case, the committee was told the complaint was filed beyond the two-year time period for filing.

In another case, the committee had been asked to render an opinion by Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli, (R-16), Somerville, regarding a lease.

Ciattarelli sought an advisory opinion from the committee.  He is sole owner of JMC Real Estate Holding, and a property on Main Street in Somerville is 75 percent occupied by a publishing concern he co-owns.  The remainder is leased to Collaborative Support Programs of New Jeresey, a private, not-for-profit provider of mental health services, the committee was told.

The lease arrangement was worked out before Ciattarelli took office in 2012, the committee was told.

James Wilson of the Office of Legislative Services told the committee that CSP is not a state agency so the provision of contracts law is not triggered, and he is not contracting with a state agency himself.

Ethics panel dismisses complaints against Conaway, Turner