STATE OF NEW JERSEY
PRE-FILED FOR INTRODUCTION IN THE 2020 SESSION
Senator SAMUEL D. THOMPSON
District 12 (Burlington, Middlesex, Monmouth and Ocean)
Prohibits the use of county and municipal vehicles by part-time elected local government officers.
CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT
Introduced Pending Technical Review by Legislative Counsel.
An Act prohibiting the use of county and municipal vehicles by part-time elected local government officers, and amending P.L.1991, c.29.
Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. Section 5 of P.L.1991, c.29 (C.40A:9-22.5) is amended to read as follows:
5. Local government officers or employees under the jurisdiction of the Local Finance Board shall comply with the following provisions:
a. No local government officer or employee or member of his immediate family shall have an interest in a business organization or engage in any business, transaction, or professional activity, which is in substantial conflict with the proper discharge of his duties in the public interest;
b. No independent local authority shall, for a period of one year next subsequent to the termination of office of a member of that authority:
(1) award any contract which is not publicly bid to a former member of that authority;
(2) allow a former member of that authority to represent, appear for or negotiate on behalf of any other party before that authority; or
(3) employ for compensation, except pursuant to open competitive examination in accordance with Title 11A of the New Jersey Statutes and the rules and regulations promulgated pursuant thereto, any former member of that authority.
The restrictions contained in this subsection shall also apply to any business organization in which the former authority member holds an interest.
c. No local government officer or employee shall use or attempt to use his official position to secure unwarranted privileges or advantages for himself or others;
d. No local government officer or employee shall act in his official capacity in any matter where he, a member of his immediate family, or a business organization in which he has an interest, has a direct or indirect financial or personal involvement that might reasonably be expected to impair his objectivity or independence of judgment;
e. No local government officer or employee shall undertake any employment or service, whether compensated or not, which might reasonably be expected to prejudice his independence of judgment in the exercise of his official duties;
f. No local government officer or employee, member of his immediate family, or business organization in which he has an interest, shall solicit or accept any gift, favor, loan, political contribution, service, promise of future employment, or other thing of value based upon an understanding that the gift, favor, loan, contribution, service, promise, or other thing of value was given or offered for the purpose of influencing him, directly or indirectly, in the discharge of his official duties. This provision shall not apply to the solicitation or acceptance of contributions to the campaign of an announced candidate for elective public office, if the local government officer has no knowledge or reason to believe that the campaign contribution, if accepted, was given with the intent to influence the local government officer in the discharge of his official duties;
g. No local government officer or employee shall use, or allow to be used, his public office or employment, or any information, not generally available to the members of the public, which he receives or acquires in the course of and by reason of his office or employment, for the purpose of securing financial gain for himself, any member of his immediate family, or any business organization with which he is associated;
h. No local government officer or employee or business organization in which he has an interest shall represent any person or party other than the local government in connection with any cause, proceeding, application or other matter pending before any agency in the local government in which he serves. This provision shall not be deemed to prohibit one local government employee from representing another local government employee where the local government agency is the employer and the representation is within the context of official labor union or similar representational responsibilities;
i. No local government officer shall be deemed in conflict with these provisions if, by reason of his participation in the enactment of any ordinance, resolution or other matter required to be voted upon or which is subject to executive approval or veto, no material or monetary gain accrues to him as a member of any business, profession, occupation or group, to any greater extent than any gain could reasonably be expected to accrue to any other member of such business, profession, occupation or group;
j. No elected local government officer shall be prohibited from making an inquiry for information on behalf of a constituent, if no fee, reward or other thing of value is promised to, given to or accepted by the officer or a member of his immediate family, whether directly or indirectly, in return therefor; [and]
k. Nothing shall prohibit
any local government officer or employee, or members of his immediate family,
from representing himself, or themselves, in negotiations or proceedings
concerning his, or their, own interests; and
l. No elected, part-time local government officer shall accept the assignment or use of any passenger vehicle purchased with funds appropriated by a municipality, county, or local government agency.
(cf: P.L.1991, c.29, s.5)
2. This act shall take effect immediately.
This bill amends the "Local Government Ethics Law," P.L.1991, c.29 (C.40A:9-22.1 et seq.) to provide that no elected, part-time local government officer shall accept the assignment or use of any passenger vehicle purchased with funds appropriated by a municipality, county, or local government agency.
This bill is intended to address problems of unnecessary municipal spending, highlighted by a situation in Atlantic City concerning the purchase of vehicles for the use of elected, part-time council members.