Month: August 2012

Proposed Sexual Abuse Law Could Lead to Liability for New Jersey Municipalities

Legislation is currently pending in both houses of the New Jersey Legislature that would eliminate the statute of limitations on civil actions for sexual abuse. While we certainly do not question the intent of these bills, New Jersey municipalities should be aware of the potential legal consequences. The current statute

Does A Public Record Have to be Readable to be Subject to Release under OPRA?

The New Jersey Open Records Act (OPRA) continues to pose challenges for municipalities. In a recent decision, Superior Court Judge Yolanda Ciccone ruled that data does not need to be readable to qualify as a public record.   The Facts of the Case The New Jersey OPRA lawsuit was filed

Should New Jersey Schools Reconsider 24/7 Conduct Policies?

The courts have struck down New Jersey schools conduct policy as ultra vires, raising the question of whether any policy that regulates out of school or after hours conduct will survive judicial scrutiny. The decision is significant given that at least 54 schools are currently using these policies. In the

COAH Fight Rages on in New Jersey As Appellate Court Blocks Seizure

New Jersey municipalities have now received their letters from the New Jersey Council on Affordable Housing (COAH) regarding the seizure of unused affordable housing trust funding. However, they are refusing to go down without a fight. The most recent challenge, brought by the Fair Share Housing Center, argued that Gov.

New Jersey Judges Looking for Post-Retirement Employment Will Have to Comply With New Rules

Against the backdrop of a ballot question to force judges to pay more for their benefits, the New Jersey Supreme Court has approved amendments to the Rules Governing the Courts of the State of New Jersey, which impose new ethics obligations on those New Jersey judges who begin to look

New Jersey Appeals Court Strikes Down 24/7 School Conduct Policies

New Jersey school districts may need to go back to the drawing board when it comes to disciplining students for illicit activities that not take place on school grounds or during school hours. The Appellate Division recently held that many of these 24/7 school conduct policies go too far by

Should New Jersey Municipalities Amend Open Meeting Rules to Reflect New Technology?

While new technology like e-mail and social media makes it easier for government officials to communicate with colleagues, it can also lead to inadvertent violations of the New Jersey’s Open Public Meetings Act (OPMA). As a result, many municipalities are amending their public meeting rules to specifically address electronic communications.