Sources: ‘Single object’ challenge to pension and health reform will fail

Sources have told PolitickerNJ that a push to derail the pension and benefits reform bill on the grounds that it violates the state constitution’s “single object” clause will not succeed because state attorneys have already blessed it.

According to sources, some Democratic lawmakers as well as union members opposed to the reform legislation have planned to challenge the bill because it reforms both pension and health benefits.  But the state Office of Legislative Services has provided an opinion that the bill does not violate the clause that requires legislation to have just one purpose.

One attorney told PolitickerNJ that challenges based on the single object clause are difficult at best and with the blessing of OLS, next to impossible.

Union members and some of their Democratic allies have pushed for the legislation to be split into two bills, but leadership – as well as the governor who said the bills must be joined – have resisted.

Bill sponsor Senate President Steve Sweeney said last week that there is strong support for the pension reform but resistance to reforming health benefits, which has led to the push to split the bill.

“They want the sweet, without the bitter,” Sweeney said

Sources: ‘Single object’ challenge to pension and health reform will fail