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(TRENTON) – Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats John J. Burzichelli, Annette Quijano, Wayne DeAngelo and Celeste Riley to ease the bureacracy hurting New Jersey businesses was approved 37-0 by the Senate on Monday, giving it final legislative approval.
The bill is part of ongoing Assembly Democratic efforts to cut the bureacracy impairing New Jersey’s business environment.
“This is a sensible bill that will go along way toward making our state more business friendly,” said Burzichelli (D-Gloucester/Cumberland/Salem), chair of the Assembly Regulatory Oversight and Gaming Committee that initially released the bill.
The bill was approved 78-0 by the Assembly on Jan. 10
The bill (A-2849) requires the Board of Public Utilities to issue every order in written form and post them on the Internet.
“We’ve heard time and again from our businesses on how it would be helpful to them to get clearer guidelines from the state, and a written order should help provide the clarity needed to ensure everyone is on the same page,” said Quijano (D-Union).
“Commonsense legislation like this that helps improve our business environment and create jobs is clearly the right direction for our state and for hard-working New Jersey families who benefit from a strong business environment,” said DeAngelo (D-Mercer/Middlesex).
“BPU orders can be among the most important yet complex directives for our businesses, and it’s important to make sure they’re clear so our businesses can spend more time creating jobs and less time cutting through red tape,” said Riley (D-Cumberland/Gloucester/Salem).
The bill allows a written order to be issued within 14 days of an oral order where a matter is an emergency that affects public health and safety if the written order doesn’t differ substantively from the oral order.
Any board order issued orally may be made effective immediately, but if such order is not issued in written form within 14 calendar days thereafter, it shall be void and of no effect.
The bill is among many advanced by the Assembly this session to cut red tape:
· Remove licensing requirements for recreational bingo games (A-1169), sponsored by Assemblywoman Connie Wagner (D-Bergen). It was approved by the Assembly in May;
· Require the state to consider the economic impact of new regulations (A-2129), sponsored by Assemblyman Upendra Chivukula (D-Somerset/Middlesex) and Burzichelli. It was approved by the Assembly in September;
· Require all state agency rules be published in the state register and prohibit the use of regulatory guidance documents (A-2464), sponsored by Burzichelli and Quijano. It was approved by the Assembly in March and recently advanced by a Senate panel.
· Prohibit the adoption of new rules that exceed federal standards (A-2486), sponsored by Burzichelli. It was released by committee in March;
· Establish new procedures for agency rulemaking (A-2720), sponsored by Burzichelli, Quijano and Ralph Caputo (D-Essex). It was signed into law March 1.
· Amend current law concerning state agency rule-making by changing the chapter expiration dates of rules from five years to seven years and establishing a new procedure for the re-adoption of rules without substantive changes (A-2721), sponsored by Burzichelli, Quijano and Caputo. It received final legislative approval on Feb. 17;
· Modify the process for contested case hearings by the Office of Administrative Law with regard to telephone and video conferences, delegation of final decision authority, oral decisions, checklist decisions, electronic filings and settlements. (A-2722) sponsored by Burzichelli, Quijano and Caputo. It was approved by the Assembly on Feb. 17 and was recently released by a Senate committee.
· Eliminate numerous inactive boards and commission (A-2851), sponsored by Burzichelli, Quijano, Caputo and DeAngelo. It was signed into law in November; and
· Streamline permit approval for economic development projects (A-2853), sponsored by Burzichelli, Matthew J. Milam, Nelson T. Albano (both D-Atlantic/Cape May/Cumberland), Paul Moriarty (D-Gloucester/Camden) and Thomas P. Giblin (D-Essex/Passaic). It was signed into law on March 1.