Senate passes bills on posting gasoline prices, school bus safety, more

TRENTON – Here are bills passed by the state Senate in its Monday session.

S847 requires all gas stations to post prices per gallon, for both cash and credit card choices on their roadway signs. The penalties include $1,500 for a first offense and $3,000 for a second offense, the bill states. It passed 34-1.

S219, which passed unanimously, requires all security guards at colleges and universities that don’t have their own police departments to report campus crimes to local police departments.  If the college town lacks a police force, the security guard must notify State Police, according to the bill.

S508, passed 21-12,  establishes a grant program in the Department of Community Affair to provide funds for youth mentoring programs. The Office of Legislative Services could not immediately determine what the fiscal impact of such a program would be, but did say it could result in “indeterminate increase in state costs.”

S2388, passed 32-2, would prevent employers from posting job listings which state that the unemployed need not apply. The original Assembly bill would have fined first-time offenders $5,000 and $10,000 for any subsequent offense. Because of those high penalties, the bill was vetoed. Jeff Chisea, counsel for Gov. Chris Christie, suggested the fines be reduced to $1,000 for first-time offenders and $5,000 for employers who committed the offense a second time. The changes, he argued, would help in toning down New Jersey’s reputation as being unfriendly, if not “punitive,” toward the business community.

S2244, requiring all school buses to use flashing lights when transporting disabled kids, passed unanimously. Fines would be issued to drivers who pass a school bus unsafely or fail to yield, ranging between $100 and $250 and up to two weeks of imprisonment, according to the bill.

S2609, which passed 26—0, would adjust the taxes a worker pays into the State disabilities benefits funds. Since 1994, the lack of adjustments to the taxes resulted in some $773 million more than the fund was expected to take in, resulting in “excessive accumulations” that were later diverted for other state budget purposes. The bill is intended to prevent such accumulations.

S2285, which would require medical oxygen providers to notify fire departments whenever they stop delivering oxygen to a local home, passed unanimously.

S2756, which would let voters request mail-in ballots for all future general elections, passed 23-13.  The measure now goes to the Assembly. 

S1643 passed 32-3, requiring sterilization of all cats and dogs released for adoption from various facilities and also updates the law concerning impoundment.

S1856 would authorize the Ocean County and municipal planning boards to take measures to control storm water runoff and non point source pollution in Barnegat Bay watershed, and it passed 21-15.

S1730, which passed 29-6, requires all public employees hired in the future to establish residency in the state. They will have one year to do so if they do not already live in New Jersey when they are hired.

SCR136, which passed 36-0, will set up a review panel to oversee psychiatric hospitals and disability care centers.

S972, which prevents rape victims from being billed for forensic evidence collection, passed and now goes to the Assembly.

S2443, which “establishes a three-year Medicaid Accountable Care Organization Demonstration Project in the Department of Human Services,” was approved 21-12.

Senate passes bills on posting gasoline prices, school bus safety, more