SENATE, No. 2662

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

217th LEGISLATURE

 

INTRODUCED OCTOBER 7, 2016

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator  DIANE B. ALLEN

District 7 (Burlington)

Senator  STEPHEN M. SWEENEY

District 3 (Cumberland, Gloucester and Salem)

 

Co-Sponsored by:

Senators A.R.Bucco, Beck and Pou

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     “Charlie’s Law”; Establishes civil penalties for persons who interfere with or deny persons with disabilities accompanied by service or guide dogs access to places of public accommodation.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As introduced.

  


An Act concerning the Law Against Discrimination and supplementing Title 10 of the Revised Statutes.

 

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

     1.    a.   Any person who interferes with or denies a person with a disability accompanied by a service or guide dog access to a place of public accommodation in violation of P.L.1971, c.130 (C.10:5-29 et seq.), section 3 of P.L.1977, c.456 (C.10:5-29.1), and the “Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990,” (42 U.S.C. s.12101 et seq.) shall, in addition to any other relief or affirmative action provided by law, be liable to a civil penalty of not less than:

     (1)   $250 for the first violation;

     (2)   $500 for the second violation; and

     (3)   $1,000 for the third and each subsequent violation.

     b.    The penalty shall be collected pursuant to the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999," P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.), in a summary proceeding before the municipal court having jurisdiction. A law enforcement officer having enforcement authority in that municipality shall issue a summons for a violation of the provisions of subsection a. of this section, and shall serve and execute all process with respect to the enforcement of this section consistent with the Rules of Court.

     c.     The penalties assessed under this section shall be payable to the State Treasurer and shall be appropriated to the Department of Law and Public Safety to fund educational programs for law enforcement officers on the right of a person with a disability to have a service or guide dog in a place of public accommodation.

     d.    The Attorney General  shall establish a public awareness campaign to inform the public about the provisions of this act. 

 

     2.    This act shall take effect on the 60th day following enactment.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

     This bill establishes a civil penalty for interfering with or denying a person with a disability accompanied by a service or guide dog access to a place of public accommodation in violation of  P.L.1971, c.130 (C.10:5-29 et seq.), section 3 of P.L.1977, c.456 (C.10:5-29.1), and the “Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990,” (42 U.S.C. s.12101 et seq.).

     A person who violates the provisions of the bill, in addition to any other relief or affirmative action provided by law, would be liable to a civil penalty of no less than: $250 for the first violation; $500 for the second violation; and  $1,000 for the third and each subsequent violation.

      The penalty would be collected pursuant to the "Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999," P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.), in a summary proceeding before the municipal court having jurisdiction. A law enforcement officer having enforcement authority in the municipality where the violation took place would issue a summons and serve and execute all process with respect to enforcement of the provisions of the bill consistent with the Rules of Court.

     The penalty assessed would be appropriated to the Department of Law and Public Safety to fund educational programs for law enforcement officers on the right of a person with a disability to have a service or guide dog in a place of public accommodation.

     The bill also requires the Attorney General to establish a public awareness campaign to inform the public about the provisions of the bill.