In Case You Missed It: This week, the Legislature met to pass a wide array of initiatives to address the COVID-19 public health emergency. These proposals range from protections for homeowners and renters to relief for businesses. I was proud to sponsor a number of these initiatives (those that I sponsored are in bold below). For more information on these proposals please visit www.njleg.state.nj.us.
RELIEF FOR HOMEOWNERS AND TENANTS:
- S2332: Establishes “2020 New Jersey Emergency Rental Assistance Program”; appropriates $100 million.
- S2340: Authorizes Governor to permit mortgage forbearance and rent payment responsibility reduction for certain emergency-impacted residential property owners and tenants during emergency circumstances.
- S2341: Authorizes Governor to restrict rent increases on certain commercial tenants during emergency circumstances; enhances similar existing authority over rent increases on residential tenants
RELIEF FOR WORKERS & CONSUMERS:
- S2329: Revises requirements for cash assistance benefits under Work First New Jersey program
- S2345: Requires refund or credit for transient space reservations when a public health emergency or state of emergency is in effect.
- S2374 Concerns Family Leave benefits during epidemic related emergencies.
- SR64: Urges financial institutions to waive and suspend certain fees and payments during coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic.
RELIEF FOR BUSINESSES:
- S2338: “COVID-19 Fiscal Mitigation Act”; Clarifies filing and payment deadline extension for CBT and GIT taxpayers, modifies duration of State Fiscal Years 2020 and 2021, requires certain updates and presentation for State Fiscal Years 2020 and 2021
- S2347: Establishes Employment and Business-Related Tax Deferral Assistance Program in EDA to allow small businesses to defer the payment and remittance of certain employment and business-related taxes during COVID-19 public health emergency.
- S2348: Allows CBT and GIT tax credits to certain employers that retain employees during COVID-19 pandemic.
- S2353: Excludes from severance requirements under “Millville Dallas Airmotive Plant Job Loss Notification Act” mass layoffs resulting from coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic.
- S2363 Authorizes Governor to permit emergency rent suspension for certain small business tenants during COVID-19 pandemic.
- SR65: Urges creation of federal COVID-19 Business and Employee Continuity and Recovery Fund.
ENSURING CONTINUITY OF SERVICES AND ELECTIONS:
- S2336: Allows remote notarial acts, and other acts executing and verifying certain documents, by notaries public and other authorized officials during public health emergency and State of Emergency declared by Governor in Executive Order 103 of 2020.
- S2342: Permits nonprofit corporations to allow members to participate in meetings by way of remote communication, and permits nonprofit corporations to hold meetings in part or solely by means of remote communication during state of emergency.
- S2349: Changes the date of the 2020 primary election from June 2 to July 7.
- S2355: Delays mandatory retirement in SPRS when it would occur during period of State of emergency.
PROTECTIONS FOR HEALTHCARE WORKERS:
- S2333: Provides immunity from civil liability for certain medical malpractice claims alleging injury or death incurred during public health emergency and state of emergency declared by Governor's Executive Order 103 of 2020.
- S2351: Affords employment protection to certain emergency medical responders.
ENSURING ACCESS TO BENEFITS, PRESCRIPTIONS, REPORTING DATA:
- S2331: Assists inmates released from incarceration in obtaining necessary reentry benefits.
- S2344: Requires Medicaid and health insurance coverage for certain refills of prescription drugs during state of emergency.
- S2354: Prohibits cancellation or nonrenewal of insurance during public health emergency or state of emergency and for 60 days thereafter and requires insurers to take certain actions to avoid cancellation and nonrenewal.
- S2357: Requires hospitals to report COVID-19 demographic data.
EDUCATION/ PROFESSIONAL LICENSING MODIFICATIONS:
- S2334: Permits professional and occupational licensing boards to reactivate licensure of certain individuals during state of emergency or public health emergency.
- S2337: Permits use of virtual or remote instruction to meet minimum 180-day school year requirement under certain circumstances.
- S2356: Provides relief to students receiving State financial aid to address special circumstances due to 2020 public health state of emergency.