New Laws in New Jersey: 15 Bills Become Law


New Laws Spanning Healthcare, Energy, and Business Reform Signal Progressive Changes in New Jersey.

In a significant move, Governor Phil Murphy at the end of the 2023 year, signed a series of bills that mark a progressive shift in various sectors across New Jersey. The legislation, ranging from small business support to healthcare reforms, represents a comprehensive approach to addressing some of the state's most pressing issues.

Small Business Internet Presence and Health Care Reforms Take Center Stage

Among the key bills signed is A-4752wGR/S-3210, aimed at bolstering the internet presence of small businesses, crucial in today's digital age. This move acknowledges the vital role of small businesses in the state's economy and provides them with tools to thrive in a competitive online marketplace.

In healthcare, A-5225wGR/S-3729 stands out, offering community-based palliative care benefits under Medicaid. This bill addresses the growing need for accessible healthcare services, particularly for those with serious illnesses, ensuring that more New Jersey residents receive the care they need at the community level.

Enhancing Safety and Environmental Initiatives

The "Fire Life Safety Damper and Smoke Control System Inspection Verification Act" (A-5179wGR/SCS for S-3516) mandates routine maintenance and testing of crucial safety systems in certain buildings. This act is a proactive measure to enhance safety standards and prevent fire-related accidents.

In an environmental push, S-3044wGR/A-4716 allocates $15 million for the Electric School Bus Program, demonstrating New Jersey's commitment to reducing carbon emissions and fostering a cleaner environment.

Criminal Justice and Health Insurance Reforms

SCS for S-524wGR/ACS for A-1700 introduces the Mental Health Diversion Program, a significant reform in criminal justice. This program aims to divert eligible individuals away from the criminal justice system and into appropriate mental health services, addressing the root causes of certain criminal behaviors.

Further, S-3480wGR/A-5137, known as “The Small Business Health Insurance Affordability Act”, revises requirements for individual and small employer health benefits plans, making healthcare more accessible and affordable for small businesses and their employees.

Laws to know:

SCS for S-524wGR/ACS for A-1700 (Ruiz, Cunningham/Quijano, Mukherji, Atkins) - Creates Mental Health Diversion Program to divert eligible persons away from criminal justice system and into appropriate case management and mental health services

S-2818wGR/A-4394 (Turner/Kennedy) - Establishes "Working Group to Study Pricing of Motor Fuels by Retail Dealers"

SCS for S-2848wGR/A-4328 (Smith, Greenstein/DeAngelo, Karabinchak) - Revises criteria for remote net metering program established by BPU

S-3011/A-4800 (Scutari/Murphy, McKeon, Mukherji) - Concerns use of ignition interlock devices for drunk driving offenses

S-3044wGR/A-4716 (Diegnan, Greenstein/Stanley, Benson, Mukherji) - Makes supplemental appropriation of $15 million to DEP for implementation of Electric School Bus Program

S-3153wGR/A-4548 (Codey/Kennedy, Haider, Stanley) - Authorizes schools to receive certain food waste from other schools, and provides exemption to such receiving schools from certain DEP permits, under certain conditions

S-3480wGR/A-5137 (Vitale, Pou/McKeon, Park, Murphy) – “The Small Business Health Insurance Affordability Act”; revises certain requirements for individual and small employer health benefits plans

SCS for -3756wGR/ACS for A-5363 (Scutari, Sarlo/Schaer, Wimberly) - Permits SHBP and SEHBP to award contracts for more claims administrators for each program plan; requires claims data and trend reports to be provided to certain persons

S-3839wGR/A-4061 (Greenstein, Steinhardt/Mukherji, Wirths, Space) - Requires Commissioner of Corrections to institute 10-minute shift overlap in State correctional facilities; appropriates $13 million

S-4011wGR/A-5650 (Ruiz/Coughlin, Pintor Marin, Wimberly) - Modifies New Jersey Community-Anchored Development Program

A-5549/S-3960 (Lopez, Benson, McKnight/Vitale) - Extends eligibility for certain individuals for emergency assistance

ACS for A-5757/S-4127 (Conaway, Speight, Sumter/Gopal) - Extends certain pay parity regarding telemedicine and telehealth for one year

A-4752wGR/S-3210 (Tully, Benson, Chaparro/Gopal, Pou) - Promotes small business Internet presence

A-5179wGR/SCS for S-3516 (Verrelli, Murphy, Benson/Cruz-Perez, Turner) - "Fire Life Safety Damper and Smoke Control System Inspection Verification Act"; Requires routine maintenance and periodic testing of smoke dampers, fire dampers, and smoke control systems in certain buildings by qualified personnel

A-5225wGR/S-3729 (McKnight, Speight, Murphy/Codey, Pou)
- Provides for coverage of community-based palliative care benefits under Medicaid

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