Bill Text: NJ A4181 | 2018-2019 | Regular Session | Introduced


Bill Title: Clarifies that employees of renaissance school projects are in State administered retirement systems.*

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 3-0)

Status: (Enrolled) 2018-08-27 - 2nd Reading in the Assembly on Concur. w/Gov.'s Recommend. [A4181 Detail]

Download: New_Jersey-2018-A4181-Introduced.html

ASSEMBLY, No. 4181

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

218th LEGISLATURE

 

INTRODUCED JUNE 14, 2018

 


 

Sponsored by:

Assemblywoman  PATRICIA EGAN JONES

District 5 (Camden and Gloucester)

Assemblyman  ARTHUR BARCLAY

District 5 (Camden and Gloucester)

Assemblywoman  CAROL A. MURPHY

District 7 (Burlington)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Requires establishment of common enrollment system in renaissance school district; expands definition of urban campus area; clarifies that employees of renaissance school projects are in State-administered retirement systems.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As introduced.

  


An Act concerning renaissance school districts, supplementing chapter 36C of Title 18A of the New Jersey Statutes, and revising various parts of the statutory law.

 

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

 

     1.    (New section) a. The superintendent, or State superintendent, as may be applicable, of a renaissance school district that has established one or more renaissance school projects shall establish and operate, or enter into a contract with a separate entity to operate, a common enrollment system. All district schools, charter schools, and renaissance school projects in the renaissance school district shall be required to participate in the common enrollment system.  The common enrollment system shall include measures to ensure that each school is equitably serving students with disabilities, English language learners, and all other students.  The common enrollment system may grant enrollment priority to a student who has been impacted by a school closure.

     b.    As used in this section, "common enrollment system" means an enrollment procedure under which students shall apply to enroll in any district school, charter school, or renaissance school project located in the renaissance school district through a streamlined application process that requires the completion of one application for multiple schools, and which includes measures to ensure that each school is equitably serving students with disabilities, English language learners, and all other students.

 

     2.    Section 3 of P.L.2011, c.176 (C.18A:36C-3) is amended to read as follows:

     3.    As used in this act:

     "Commissioner" means the Commissioner of Education.

     "Failing district" means:  in accordance with data from the Statewide assessment reports issued by the Department of Education (1) in the case of a school district located in a city of the first class, a school district in which at least 40% of the students scored in the partially proficient range in the language arts and mathematics sections of each State assessment administered in the 2009-2010 school year; and (2) in the case of a school district located in a city of the second class, a school district in which at least 45% of the students scored in the partially proficient range in the language arts and mathematics sections of each State assessment administered in the 2009-2010 school year.

     "Per pupil expenditure" means the sum of the budget year equalization aid per pupil, budget year adjustment aid per pupil, and the prebudget year general fund tax levy per pupil inflated by the CPI rate most recent to the calculation.

     "School facility" means and includes any structure, building, or facility used wholly or in part for educational purposes by the students of a school district.

     "Renaissance school district" is a failing district in which renaissance school projects shall be established.

     "Renaissance school project" means a newly-constructed school, or group of schools in an urban campus area, that provides an educational program for students enrolled in grades pre-K through 12 or in a grade range less than pre-K through 12, that is agreed to by the school district, and is operated and managed by a nonprofit entity in a renaissance school district.  A school or group of schools may include existing facilities that have undergone substantial reconstruction by the renaissance school project applicant.  A substantial reconstruction shall: meet all applicable building codes; comply with the Uniform Construction Code enhancements where the health and safety of the building occupants are affected; comply with all "Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990" regulations outlined in the New Jersey Barrier Free Subcode at N.J.A.C.5:23-7 et seq.; and comply with the Uniform Construction Code and other applicable State and federal laws for radon, lead, asbestos, and other contaminants and be subject to the enforcement of such standards by the applicable State or federal agency.  The first facility of a renaissance school project shall be a newly-constructed school facility which is designed to house, upon completion, at least 20 percent of the total number of students to be enrolled in the renaissance school project.  A renaissance school project may include a dormitory and related facilities as permitted pursuant to section 5 of P.L.2011, c.176 (C.18A:36C-5). 

     "Urban campus area" means the area within a 1.5-mile radius of the site of [the initial] a school of a renaissance school project which has been designated by the nonprofit entity that operates the renaissance school project, except that a high school building which is part of the renaissance school project may be located within a two-mile radius of the site of [the initial] a school of a renaissance school project.

(cf: P.L.2014, c.61, s.1)

 

     3.    N.J.S.18A:66-2 is amended to read as follows:

     18A:66-2.  As used in this article:

     a.     "Accumulated deductions" means the sum of all the amounts, deducted from the compensation of a member or contributed by or in behalf of the member, including interest credited to January 1, 1956, standing to the credit of the member's individual account in the annuity savings fund.

     b.    "Annuity" means payments for life derived from the accumulated deductions of a member as provided in this article.

     c.     "Beneficiary" means any person receiving a retirement allowance or other benefit as provided in this article.

     d.    (1) "Compensation" means the contractual salary, for services as a teacher as defined in this article, which is in accordance with established salary policies of the member's employer for all employees in the same position but shall not include individual salary adjustments which are granted primarily in anticipation of the member's retirement or additional remuneration for performing temporary or extracurricular duties beyond the regular school day or the regular school year.

     (2)   In the case of a person who becomes a member of the retirement system on or after July 1, 2007, "compensation" means the amount of the contractual salary equivalent to the annual maximum wage contribution base for Social Security, pursuant to the Federal Insurance Contributions Act, for services as a teacher as defined in this article, which is in accordance with established salary policies of the member's employer for all employees in the same position but shall not include individual salary adjustments which are granted primarily in anticipation of the member's retirement or additional remuneration for performing temporary or extracurricular duties beyond the regular school day or the regular school year. This paragraph shall not apply to a person who at the time of enrollment in the retirement system on or after July 1, 2007 transfers service credit from another State-administered retirement system pursuant to N.J.S.18A:66-15.1, but shall apply to a former member of the retirement system who has been granted a retirement allowance and is reenrolled in the retirement system on or after July 1, 2007 pursuant to N.J.S.18A:66-53.2 after becoming employed again in a position that makes the person eligible to be a member of the retirement system.

     For the period of July 1, 2009 through June 30, 2011, "contractual salary" for State employees shall include wage increases under a collective negotiations agreement notwithstanding that, by amendment to that collective negotiations agreement, the effective date of the contractual increase has been deferred.  For the purpose of this paragraph, "State employee" means an employee in the Executive Branch of State government of New Jersey.

     e.     "Employer" means the State, the board of education or any educational institution or agency of or within the State by which a teacher is paid.

     f.     (1) "Final compensation" means the average annual compensation for which contributions are made for the three years of creditable service in New Jersey immediately preceding the member's retirement or death, or it shall mean the average annual compensation for New Jersey service for which contributions are made during any three fiscal years of his or her membership providing the largest possible benefit to the member or the member's beneficiary.

     (2)   In the case of a person who becomes a member of the retirement system on or after the effective date of P.L.2010, c.1, "final compensation" means the average annual compensation for which contributions are made for the five years of creditable service in New Jersey immediately preceding the member's retirement or death, or it shall mean the average annual compensation for New Jersey service for which contributions are made during any five fiscal years of his or her membership providing the largest possible benefit to the member or the member's beneficiary.

     g.    "Fiscal year" means any year commencing with July 1, and ending with June 30, next following.

     h.    "Pension" means payments for life derived from appropriations made by the State or employers to the Teachers' Pension and Annuity Fund.

     i.     "Annuity reserve" means the present value of all payments to be made on account of any annuity or benefit in lieu of an annuity, granted under the provisions of this article, computed on the basis of such mortality tables recommended by the actuary as the board of trustees adopts, with regular interest.

     j.     "Pension reserve" means the present value of all payments to be made on account of any pension or benefit in lieu of a pension granted to a member from the Teachers' Pension and Annuity Fund, computed on the basis of such mortality tables recommended by the actuary as the board of trustees adopts, with regular interest.

     k.    "Present-entrant" means any member of the Teachers' Pension and Annuity Fund who had established status as a "present-entrant member" of said fund prior to January 1, 1956.

     l.     "Rate of contribution initially certified" means the rate of contribution certified by the retirement system in accordance with N.J.S.18A:66-29.

     m.   "Regular interest" shall mean interest as determined by the State Treasurer, after consultation with the Directors of the Divisions of Investment and Pensions, the board of trustees and the actuary. It shall bear a reasonable relationship to the percentage rate of earnings on investments based on the market value of assets but shall not exceed the assumed percentage rate of increase applied to salaries plus 3%, provided however that the board of trustees shall not set the average percentage rate of increase applied to salaries below 6%.

     n.    "Retirement allowance" means the pension plus the annuity.

     o.    "School service" means any service as a "teacher" as defined in this section.

     p.    "Teacher" means any regular teacher, special teacher, helping teacher, teacher clerk, principal, vice-principal, supervisor, supervising principal, director, superintendent, city superintendent, assistant city superintendent, county superintendent, State Commissioner or Assistant Commissioner of Education, members of the State Department of Education who are certificated, unclassified professional staff and other members of the teaching or professional staff of any class, public school, renaissance school project established pursuant to P.L.2011, c.176 (C.18A:36C-1 et seq.) upon commencement of employment, high school, normal school, model school, training school, vocational school, truant reformatory school, or parental school, and of any and all classes or schools within the State conducted under the order and superintendence, and wholly or partly at the expense of the State Board of Education, of a duly elected or appointed board of education, board of school directors, or board of trustees of the State or of any school district or normal school district thereof, and any persons under contract or engagement to perform one or more of these functions. It shall also mean any person who serves, while on an approved leave of absence from regular duties as a teacher, as an officer of a local, county or State labor organization which represents, or is affiliated with an organization which represents, teachers as defined in this subsection. No person shall be deemed a teacher within the meaning of this article who is a substitute teacher. In all cases of doubt the board of trustees shall determine whether any person is a teacher as defined in this article.

     q.    "Teachers' Pension and Annuity Fund," hereinafter referred to as the "retirement system" or "system," is the corporate name of the arrangement for the payment of retirement allowances and other benefits under the provisions of this article, including the several funds placed under said system. By that name all its business shall be transacted, its funds invested, warrants for money drawn, and payments made and all of its cash and securities and other property held.

     r.     "Veteran" means any honorably discharged officer, soldier, sailor, airman, marine or nurse who served in any Army, Air Force or Navy of the Allies of the United States in World War I between July 14, 1914, and November 11, 1918, or who served in any Army, Air Force or Navy of the Allies of the United States in World War II, between September 1, 1939, and September 2, 1945, and who was inducted into such service through voluntary enlistment, and was a citizen of the United States at the time of such enlistment, and who did not, during or by reason of such service, renounce or lose United States citizenship, and any officer, soldier, sailor, marine, airman, nurse or army field clerk who has served in the active military or naval service of the United States and has or shall be discharged or released therefrom under conditions other than dishonorable, in any of the following wars, uprisings, insurrections, expeditions or emergencies, and who has presented to the retirement system evidence of such record of service in form and content satisfactory to said retirement system:

     (1)   The Indian wars and uprisings during any of the periods recognized by the War Department of the United States as periods of active hostility;

     (2)   The Spanish-American War between April 20, 1898, and April 11, 1899;

     (3)   The Philippine insurrections and expeditions during the periods recognized by the War Department of the United States as of active hostility from February 4, 1899, to the end of 1913;

     (4)   The Peking relief expedition between June 20, 1900, and May 27, 1902;

     (5)   The army of Cuban occupation between July 18, 1898, and May 20, 1902;

     (6)   The army of Cuban pacification between October 6, 1906, and April 1, 1909;

     (7)   The Mexican punitive expedition between March 14, 1916, and February 7, 1917;

     (8)   The Mexican border patrol, having actually participated in engagements against Mexicans between April 12, 1911, and June 16, 1919;

     (9)   World War I, between April 6, 1917, and November 11, 1918;

     (10) World War II, between September 16, 1940, and December 31, 1946, who shall have served at least 90 days in such active service, exclusive of any period of assignment (1) for a course of education or training under the Army Specialized Training Program or the Navy College Training Program, which course was a continuation of a civilian course and was pursued to completion, or (2) as a cadet or midshipman at one of the service academies, any part of which 90 days was served between said dates; provided that any person receiving an actual service-incurred injury or disability shall be classed as a veteran, whether or not that person has completed the 90-day service as herein provided;

     (11) Korean conflict on or after June 23, 1950, and on or prior to January 31, 1955, who shall have served at least 90 days in such active service, exclusive of any period of assignment (1) for a course of education or training under the Army Specialized Training Program or the Navy College Training Program, which course was a continuation of a civilian course and was pursued to completion, or (2) as a cadet or midshipman at one of the service academies, any part of which 90 days was served between said dates; provided that any person receiving an actual service-incurred injury or disability shall be classed as a veteran, whether or not that person has completed the 90-day service as herein provided; and provided further that any member classed as a veteran pursuant to this subsection prior to August 1, 1966, shall continue to be classed as a veteran, whether or not that person completed the 90-day service between said dates as herein provided;

     (12) Lebanon crisis, on or after July 1, 1958, who has served in Lebanon or on board any ship actively engaged in patrolling the territorial waters of that nation for a period, continuous or in the aggregate, of at least 14 days commencing on or before November 1, 1958 or the date of termination of that conflict, as proclaimed by the President of the United States or Congress, whichever date of termination is the latest, in such active service; provided, that any person receiving an actual service-incurred injury or disability shall be classed as a veteran whether or not that person has completed the 14 days' service as herein provided;

     (13) Vietnam conflict, on or after December 31, 1960, and on or prior to May 7, 1975, who shall have served at least 90 days in such active service, exclusive of any period of assignment (1) for a course of education or training under the Army Specialized Training Program or the Navy College Training Program, which course was a continuation of a civilian course and was pursued to completion, or (2) as a cadet or midshipman at one of the service academies, any part of which 90 days was served between said dates; and exclusive of any service performed pursuant to the provisions of section 511(d) of Title 10, United States Code, pursuant to an enlistment in the Army National Guard or as a reserve for service in the Army Reserve, Naval Reserve, Air Force Reserve, Marine Corps Reserve, or Coast Guard Reserve; provided that any person receiving an actual service-incurred injury or disability shall be classed as a veteran, whether or not that person has completed the 90-day service as herein provided;

     (14) Lebanon peacekeeping mission, on or after September 26, 1982, who has served in Lebanon or on board any ship actively engaged in patrolling the territorial waters of that nation for a period, continuous or in the aggregate, of at least 14 days commencing on or before December 1, 1987 or the date of termination of that mission, as proclaimed by the President of the United States or Congress, whichever date of termination is the latest, in such active service; provided, that any person receiving an actual service-incurred injury or disability shall be classed as a veteran whether or not that person has completed the 14 days' service as herein provided;

     (15) Grenada peacekeeping mission, on or after October 23, 1983, who has served in Grenada or on board any ship actively engaged in patrolling the territorial waters of that nation for a period, continuous or in the aggregate, of at least 14 days commencing on or before November 21, 1983 or the date of termination of that mission, as proclaimed by the President of the United States or Congress, whichever date of termination is the latest, in such active service; provided, that any person receiving an actual service-incurred injury or disability shall be classed as a veteran whether or not that person has completed the 14 days' service as herein provided;

     (16) Panama peacekeeping mission, on or after December 20, 1989 or the date of inception of that mission, as proclaimed by the President of the United States or Congress, whichever date of inception is earliest, who has served in Panama or on board any ship actively engaged in patrolling the territorial waters of that nation for a period, continuous or in the aggregate, of at least 14 days commencing on or before January 31, 1990 or the date of termination of that mission, as proclaimed by the President of the United States or Congress, whichever date of termination is the latest, in such active service; provided, that any person receiving an actual service-incurred injury or disability shall be classed as a veteran whether or not that person has completed the 14 days' service as herein provided;

     (17) Operation "Desert Shield/Desert Storm" mission in the Arabian peninsula and the Persian Gulf, on or after August 2, 1990 or the date of inception of that operation, as proclaimed by the President of the United States or Congress, whichever date of inception is earliest, who has served in the Arabian peninsula or on board any ship actively engaged in patrolling the Persian Gulf for a period, continuous or in the aggregate, of at least 14 days commencing on or before the date of termination of that mission, as proclaimed by the President of the United States or Congress, whichever date of termination is the latest, in such active service; provided, that any person receiving an actual service-incurred injury or disability shall be classed as a veteran whether or not that person has completed the 14 days' service as herein provided;

     (18) Operation Northern Watch and Operation Southern Watch, on or after August 27, 1992, or the date of inception of that operation, as proclaimed by the President of the United States, Congress or United States Secretary of Defense, whichever date of inception is earliest, who served in the theater of operation, including in the Arabian peninsula and the Persian Gulf, and in direct support of that operation for a period, continuously or in the aggregate, of at least 14 days in such active service, commencing on or before the date of termination of the operation, as proclaimed by the President of the United States, Congress or United States Secretary of Defense, whichever date of termination is latest; provided, that any person receiving an actual service-incurred injury or disability while engaged in such service shall be classed as a veteran whether or not that person has completed the 14 days' service as herein provided;

     (19) Operation "Restore Hope" in Somalia, on or after December 5, 1992, or the date of inception of that operation as proclaimed by the President of the United States or Congress, whichever date is earliest, who has served in Somalia or on board any ship actively engaged in patrolling the territorial waters of that nation for a period, continuously or in the aggregate, of at least 14 days in such active service commencing on or before March 31, 1994; provided that any person receiving an actual service-incurred injury or disability shall be classed as a veteran whether or not that person has completed the 14-day service as herein provided;

     (20) Operations "Joint Endeavor" and "Joint Guard" in the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, on or after November 20, 1995, who served in such active service in direct support of one or both of the operations for at least 14 days, continuously or in the aggregate, commencing on or before June 20, 1998, and (1) was deployed in that nation or in another area in the region, or (2) was on board a United States naval vessel operating in the Adriatic Sea, or (3) operated in airspace above the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina; provided that any person receiving an actual service-incurred injury or disability shall be classed as a veteran whether or not that person completed the 14-day service requirement;

     (21) Operation "Enduring Freedom", on or after September 11, 2001, who served in a theater of operation and in direct support of that operation for a period, continuously or in the aggregate, of at least 14 days in such active service commencing on or before the date the President of the United States or the United States Secretary of Defense designates as the termination date of that operation; provided, that any person receiving an actual service-incurred injury or disability while engaged in such service shall be classed as a veteran whether or not that person has completed the 14 days' service as herein provided; and

     (22) Operation "Iraqi Freedom", on or after the date the President of the United States or the United States Secretary of Defense designates as the inception date of that operation, who served in Iraq or in another area in the region in direct support of that operation for a period, continuously or in the aggregate, of at least 14 days in such active service commencing on or before the date the President of the United States or the United States Secretary of Defense designates as the termination date of that operation; provided, that any person receiving an actual service-incurred injury or disability while engaged in such service shall be classed as a veteran whether or not that person has completed the 14 days' service as herein provided.

     "Veteran" also means any honorably discharged member of the American Merchant Marine who served during World War II and is declared by the United States Department of Defense to be eligible for federal veterans' benefits.

     s.     "Child" means a deceased member's unmarried child either (a) under the age of 18 or (b) of any age who, at the time of the member's death, is disabled because of mental retardation or physical incapacity, is unable to do any substantial, gainful work because of the impairment and the impairment has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months, as affirmed by the medical board.

     t.     (1)  "Widower," for employees of the State, means the man to whom a member was married, or a domestic partner as defined in section 3 of P.L.2003, c.246 (C.26:8A-3), at least five years before the date of her death and to whom she continued to be married or a domestic partner until the date of her death and who was receiving at least one-half of his support from the member in the 12-month period immediately preceding the member's death or the accident which was the direct cause of the member's death. The dependency of such a widower will be considered terminated by marriage of, or establishment of a domestic partnership by, the widower subsequent to the death of the member. In the event of the payment of an accidental death benefit, the five-year qualification shall be waived.

     (2)   Subject to the provisions of paragraph (3) of this subsection, "widower," for employees of public employers other than the State, means the man to whom a member was married at least five years before the date of her death and to whom she continued to be married until the date of her death and who was receiving at least one-half of his support from the member in the 12-month period immediately preceding the member's death or the accident which was the direct cause of the member's death. The dependency of such a widower shall be considered terminated by marriage of the widower subsequent to the death of the member. In the event of the payment of an accidental death benefit, the five-year qualification shall be waived.

     (3)   A public employer other than the State may adopt a resolution providing that the term "widower" as defined in paragraph (2) of this subsection shall include domestic partners as provided in paragraph (1) of this subsection.

     u.    (1) "Widow," for employees of the State, means the woman to whom a member was married, or a domestic partner as defined in section 3 of P.L.2003, c.246 (C.26:8A-3), at least five years before the date of his death and to whom he continued to be married or a domestic partner until the date of his death and who was receiving at least one-half of her support from the member in the 12-month period immediately preceding the member's death or the accident which was the direct cause of the member's death. The dependency of such a widow will be considered terminated by the marriage of, or establishment of a domestic partnership by, the widow subsequent to the member's death. In the event of the payment of an accidental death benefit, the five-year qualification shall be waived.

     (2)   Subject to the provisions of paragraph (3) of this subsection, "widow," for employees of public employers other than the State, means the woman to whom a member was married at least five years before the date of his death and to whom he continued to be married until the date of his death and who was receiving at least one-half of her support from the member in the 12-month period immediately preceding the member's death or the accident which was the direct cause of the member's death. The dependency of such a widow shall be considered terminated by the marriage of the widow subsequent to the member's death. In the event of the payment of an accidental death benefit, the five-year qualification shall be waived.

     (3)   A public employer other than the State may adopt a resolution providing that the term "widower" as defined in paragraph (2) of this subsection shall include domestic partners as provided in paragraph (1) of this subsection.

     v.    "Parent" means the parent of a member who was receiving at least one-half of the parent's support from the member in the 12-month period immediately preceding the member's death or the accident which was the direct cause of the member's death. The dependency of such a parent will be considered terminated by marriage of the parent subsequent to the death of the member.

     w.   "Medical board" means the board of physicians provided for in N.J.S.18A:66-56.

     x.    (1)  "Spouse," for employees of the State, means the husband or wife, or domestic partner as defined in section 3 of P.L.2003, c.246 (C.26:8A-3), of a member.

     (2)   Subject to the provisions of paragraph (1) of this subsection, "spouse," for employees of public employers other than the State, means the husband or wife of a member.

     (3)   A public employer other than the State may adopt a resolution providing that the term "spouse" as defined in paragraph (2) of this subsection shall include domestic partners as provided in paragraph (1) of this subsection.

(cf: P.L.2010, c.1, s.20)

 

     4.    Section 7 of P.L.1954, c.84 (C.43:15A-7) is amended to read as follows:

     7.    There is hereby established the Public Employees' Retirement System of New Jersey in the Division of Pensions and Benefits of the Department of the Treasury. The membership of the retirement system shall include:

     a.     The members of the former "State Employees' Retirement System of New Jersey" enrolled as such as of December 30, 1954, who shall not have claimed for refund their accumulated deductions in said system as provided in this section;

     b.    Any person becoming an employee of the State or other employer after January 2, 1955 and every veteran, other than a retired member who returns to service pursuant to subsection b. of section 27 of P.L.1966, c.217 (C.43:15A-57.2) and other than those whose appointments are seasonal, becoming an employee of the State or other employer after such date, including a temporary employee with at least one year's continuous service.  The membership of the retirement system shall not include those persons appointed to serve as described in paragraphs (2) and (3) of subsection a. of section 2 of P.L.2007, c.92 (C.43:15C-2), except a person who was a member of the retirement system prior to the effective date of sections 1 through 19 of P.L.2007, c.92 (C.43:15C-1 through C.43:15C-15, C.43:3C-9, C.43:15A-7, C.43:15A-75 and C.43:15A-135) and continuously thereafter; and

     c.     Every employee veteran in the employ of the State or other employer on January 2, 1955, who is not a member of any retirement system supported wholly or partly by the State.

     d.    Membership in the retirement system shall be optional for elected officials other than veterans, and for school crossing guards, who having become eligible for benefits under other pension systems are so employed on a part-time basis.  Elected officials commencing service on or after the effective date of sections 1 through 19 of P.L.2007, c.92 (C.43:15C-1 through C.43:15C-15, C.43:3C-9, C.43:15A-7, C.43:15A-75 and C.43:15A-135) shall not be eligible for membership in the retirement system based on service in the elective public office, except that an elected official enrolled in the retirement system as of that effective date who continues to hold that elective public office or, for an elected official specified in section 5 of P.L.2017, c.344 (C.43:15A-7.5), another elective public office, without a break in service shall be eligible to continue membership in the retirement system under the terms and conditions of enrollment.  Service in the Legislature shall be considered a single elective public office.  Any part-time school crossing guard who is eligible for benefits under any other pension system and who was hired as a part-time school crossing guard prior to March 4, 1976, may at any time terminate his membership in the retirement system by making an application in writing to the board of trustees of the retirement system.  Upon receiving such application, the board of trustees shall terminate his enrollment in the system and direct the employer to cease accepting contributions from the member or deducting from the compensation paid to the member. State employees who become members of any other retirement system supported wholly or partly by the State as a condition of employment shall not be eligible for membership in this retirement system.  Notwithstanding any other law to the contrary, all other persons accepting employment in the service of the State shall be required to enroll in the retirement system as a condition of their employment, regardless of age.

     (1)   Before or on November 1, 2008, no person in employment, office or position, for which the annual salary or remuneration is fixed at less than $1,500.00, shall be eligible to become a member of the retirement system.

     (2)   After November 1, 2008, a person who was a member of the retirement system on that date and continuously thereafter shall be eligible to be a member of the retirement system in employment, office or position, for which the annual salary or remuneration is fixed at $1,500 or more.

     (3)   After November 1, 2008 and before or on the effective date of P.L.2010, c.1, a person who was not a member of the retirement system on November 1, 2008, or who was a member of the retirement system on that date but not continuously thereafter, and who is in employment, office or position, for which the annual salary or remuneration is certified by the applicable public entity at $7,500 or more, shall be eligible to become a member of the retirement system.  The $7,500 minimum annual salary or remuneration amount shall be adjusted annually by the Director of the Division of Pensions and Benefits, by regulation, in accordance with changes in the Consumer Price Index but by no more than 4 percent.  "Consumer Price Index" means the average of the annual increase, expressed as a percentage, in the consumer price index for all urban consumers in the New York City and Philadelphia metropolitan statistical areas during the preceding calendar year as reported by the United States Department of Labor.

     (4)   After the effective date of P.L.2010, c.1, no person in an employment, office or position of the State, or an agency, board, commission, authority or instrumentality of the State, for which the hours of work are fixed at fewer than 35 per week shall be eligible to become a member of the retirement system; and no person in employment, office or position with a political subdivision of the State, or an agency, board, commission, authority or instrumentality of a political subdivision of the State, for which the hours of work are fixed by an ordinance or resolution of the political subdivision, or agency, board, commission, authority or instrumentality thereof, at fewer than 32 per week shall be eligible to become a member of the retirement system.  Any hour or part thereof, during which the person does not work due to the person's participation in a voluntary or mandatory furlough program shall not be deducted in determining if a person's hours of work are fixed at fewer than 35 or 32 per week, as appropriate, for the purpose of eligibility.

     e.     Membership of any person in the retirement system shall cease if he shall discontinue his service for more than two consecutive years.

     f.     The accumulated deductions of the members of the former "State Employees' Retirement System" which have been set aside in a trust fund designated as Fund A as provided in section 5 of this act and which have not been claimed for refund prior to February 1, 1955 shall be transferred from said Fund A to the Annuity Savings Fund of the Retirement System, provided for in section 25 of this act.  Each member whose accumulated deductions are so transferred shall receive the same prior service credit, pension credit, and membership credit in the retirement system as he previously had in the former "State Employees' Retirement System" and shall have such accumulated deductions credited to his individual account in the Annuity Savings Fund.  Any outstanding obligations of such member shall be continued.

     g.    Any school crossing guard electing to terminate his membership in the retirement system pursuant to subsection d. of this section shall, upon his request, receive a refund of his accumulated deductions as of the date of his appointment to the position of school crossing guard.  Such refund of contributions shall serve as a waiver of all benefits payable to the employee, to his dependent or dependents, or to any of his beneficiaries under the retirement system.

     h.    A temporary employee who is employed under the federal Workforce Investment Act shall not be eligible for membership in the system.  Membership for temporary employees employed under the federal Job Training Partnership Act, Pub.L.97-300 (29 U.S.C.s.1501) who are in the system on September 19, 1986 shall be terminated, and affected employees shall receive a refund of their accumulated deductions as of the date of commencement of employment in a federal Job Training Partnership Act program. Such refund of contributions shall serve as a waiver of all benefits payable to the employee, to his dependent or dependents, or to any of his beneficiaries under the retirement system.

     i.     Membership in the retirement system shall be optional for a special service employee who is employed under the federal Older American Community Service Employment Act, Pub.L.94-135 (42 U.S.C.s.3056).  Any special service employee employed under the federal Older American Community Service Employment Act, Pub.L.94-135 (42 U.S.C.s.3056), who is in the retirement system on the effective date of P.L.1996, c.139 may terminate membership in the retirement system by making an application in writing to the board of trustees of the retirement system.  Upon receiving the application, the board shall terminate enrollment in the system and the member shall receive a refund of accumulated deductions as of the date of commencement of employment in a federal Older American Community Service Employment Act program.  This refund of contributions shall serve as a waiver of all benefits payable to the employee, to any dependent or dependents, or to any beneficiary under the retirement system.

     j.     An employee of the South Jersey Port Corporation who was employed by the South Jersey Port Corporation as of the effective date of P.L.1997, c.150 (C.34:1B-144 et al.) and who shall be re-employed within 365 days of such effective date by a subsidiary corporation or other corporation, which has been established by the Delaware River Port Authority pursuant to subdivision (m) of Article I of the compact creating the Delaware River Port Authority (R.S.32:3-2), as defined in section 3 of P.L.1997, c.150 (C.34:1B-146), shall be eligible to continue membership while an employee of such subsidiary or other corporation.

     k.    An employee of a renaissance school project established pursuant to P.L.2011, c.176 (C.18A:36C-1 et seq.) upon commencement of employment.

(cf: P.L.2017, c.344, s.1)

 

     5.    This act shall take effect immediately.

STATEMENT

 

     P.L.2011, c.176 (C.18A:36C-1 et seq.) provided for the creation of renaissance school districts, districts with a history of poor performance on Statewide assessments that elect to enter into an agreement with a nonprofit entity for the construction and operation of new public schools in that district.  These schools are known as renaissance school projects.  The Camden City School District is the only district that has entered into such an agreement and is the only district affected by the bill's provisions.  The bill makes three changes that would affect the district.

     First, the bill requires that the superintendent or State superintendent, as applicable, of a renaissance school district establish a common enrollment system, a system under which students are required to apply to public schools located in the district through a single application.  All public schools located in the district, including schools operated by the district, charter schools, and renaissance school projects would be required to participate.

     Second, the bill modifies the definition of an urban campus area.  A renaissance school project must be in an urban campus area.  Currently, an urban campus area is defined to mean the area within a 1.5-mile radius of the site of the initial school of a renaissance school project, except in the case of a high school building which may be located within a two-mile radius of the initial school of a renaissance school project.  This bill provides that the 1.5-mile or 2-mile radius would apply to any building of the renaissance school designated by the nonprofit entity that operates the renaissance school project, not to the initial building of the renaissance school project.  This provision is intended to permit more students in the renaissance school district to have access to a school of a renaissance school project, and is also more community-oriented.

     Third, the bill also clarifies that individuals employed by renaissance school projects are members of the State-administered retirement systems.  Charter school employees are members of the State-administered retirement systems, and it has always been the intent that the same would apply to employees of renaissance school projects.

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