SENATE, No. 2258







By Senators SCOTT, McNAMARA, Kosco and Cardinale



An Act concerning certain maintenance costs for mentally ill and developmentally disabled patients in State institutions.


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


    1. If a county of the first class with a population greater than 800,000 according to the 1990 federal decennial census, has taken credits on charges to the county from the State for maintenance costs for mentally ill patients and developmentally disabled federal Medicaid and Medicare recipients in State institutions, pursuant to court orders, the State shall waive any outstanding repayment by the county for those credits and shall reimburse that county for prior payments.


    2. This act shall take effect immediately.





    This bill requires the State to waive Bergen county's repayment to the State of the remaining funds owed the State as a result of the court decisions in County of Essex v. Waldman, 244 N.J. Super. 647 (App. Div.1990) (hereafter Essex I) and County of Essex v. Com'r DHS, 252 N.J. Super. 1 (App. Div. 1991) (hereafter Essex II). The bill also requires the State to reimburse the county for prior payments which Bergen county made to the State in connection with these court decisions. The total amount for repayment and reimbursement to Bergen county equals $6,111,166.

    In Essex I, the Appellate Court affirmed the lower court's decision that the State's practice of retaining 50% of maintenance payments received in the form of Social Security benefits on behalf of indigent patients in State institutions violated the provisions of N.J.S.A. 30:4-60. However, the Appellate Court did not affirm the lower court's decision to make the ruling retroactive to January 1, 1980. Similarly, in Essex II, the Appellate Court affirmed the lower court's decision that the State had wrongfully charged counties for maintenance costs for developmentally disabled persons in State institutions and facilities in cases where the State had received federal Medicaid and Medicare benefits, in violation of N.J.S.A.30:4-68.1.




Waives repayment and reimburses certain county for maintenance costs for developmentally disabled and mentally ill persons in State institutions.