Bill Text: NJ A4837 | 2018-2019 | Regular Session | Amended


Bill Title: Revises and updates membership and purpose of Advisory Council on the Deaf and Hard of Hearing in DHS.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 2-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2019-05-16 - Reported out of Assembly Comm. with Amendments, 2nd Reading [A4837 Detail]

Download: New_Jersey-2018-A4837-Amended.html

[First Reprint]

ASSEMBLY, No. 4837

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

218th LEGISLATURE

 

INTRODUCED JANUARY 15, 2019

 


 

Sponsored by:

Assemblywoman  VALERIE VAINIERI HUTTLE

District 37 (Bergen)

Assemblyman  NICHOLAS CHIARAVALLOTI

District 31 (Hudson)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Revises and updates membership and purpose of Advisory Council on the Deaf and Hard of Hearing in DHS.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As reported by the Assembly Human Services Committee on May 16, 2019, with amendments.

 


An Act concerning the Advisory Council on the Deaf and Hard of Hearing and amending P.L.1977, c.166.

 

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

 

     1.    Section 8 of P.L.1977, c.166 (C.34:1-69.1a.) is amended to read as follows: 

     8.    a.  There shall be, within the Division of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing in the Department of Human Services, an Advisory Council on the Deaf and Hard of Hearing [which].

     b.    The advisory council shall consist of 1[18] 231 members.  [One representative from each of the following shall be ex-officio members:] Seven members, or their designees, shall serve ex officio, as follows:  the Director of the Office of Special Education Policy and Procedure in the Department of Education[,]; the Director of the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Program in the Department of Health[,]; the Director of the Division of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing in the Department of Human Services[,]; the Director of the Division of Aging Services in the Department of Human Services; the Director of the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services in the Department of Labor[,] and Workforce Development; the 1[Executive Director of the Commission on] Secretary of1 Higher Education; and the Superintendent of the Marie Katzenbach School for the Deaf.  [Twelve]

     1[Eleven] Sixteen public1 members shall be appointed 1[by the Governor]1, as followsone shall be a licensed audiologist; 1one shall be a licensed speech-language pathologist who has experience in working with the deaf and hard of hearing populations; one shall be an instructor of American Sign Language (ASL);1 one shall be an educational provider who represents an educational center that uses an auditory-oral approach; one shall be a business person who shall be selected from a list of candidates supplied by the New Jersey State Chamber of Commerce[,]; one shall be a lay citizen born of deaf parents[, five]; one shall be a parent of a child who is deaf or hard of hearing; 1[three] one shall be a citizen who is deaf-blind; four1 shall be citizens who are deaf, two of whom shall be [chosen from the professions and three to be lay persons,] selected from a list of candidates supplied by the New Jersey Association of the Deaf; and [five] 1[three] four1 shall be citizens who are hard of hearing, two of whom shall be selected from a list of candidates supplied by the Hearing Loss Association of 1[America] New Jersey1[In considering the appointment of the five citizens who are deaf the Governor shall give appropriate consideration to persons recommended by profoundly deaf adults represented by the New Jersey Association of the Deaf, Incorporated.  In considering the appointment of the five citizens who are hard of hearing, the Governor shall give appropriate consideration to persons recommended by hard of hearing adults represented by the organization, Self Help for Hard of Hearing People, Inc.] 

     1Of the public members appointed pursuant to this subsection, six shall be appointed by the Governor, five shall be appointed by the President of the Senate, and five shall be appointed by the Speaker of the General Assembly.1

     c.     Each [appointive] appointed member of the advisory council shall serve for a term of three years, and until [his] a successor is appointed and [qualifies] qualified, except that, of the members first appointed 1upon the enactment of P.L.1977, c.166 (C.34:1-69.1a et al.)1 , [the Governor shall designate the appointee's terms so that two] 1[three] the Governor shall designate the appointee's terms so that two1 shall be appointed for terms of one year, [two] 1[four shall be appointed] two1 for terms of two years, and [three] 1[four shall be appointed] three1 for terms of three years.  1[Each member shall hold office for the term of appointment, and until their successor is appointed and qualified.]1  Appointed members of the council may be removed by the Governor, at any time, for cause.  Any vacancy on the council shall be filled for the unexpired term, in the same manner provided for the original appointment.  Members shall be eligible for reappointment to the advisory council.

     d.    The purpose of the advisory council shall be to support New Jersey's deaf and hard of hearing community by safeguarding the rights of persons who are deaf or hard of hearing, 1[consolidating pertinent research and data,]1 providing guidance on legislative policy, and ensuring the efficient delivery of government services to the deaf and hard of hearing populations in the State.  In effectuating these purposes, the advisory council shall: 

     (1)   1[partner with State agencies to centralize pertinent data on outcomes and available government services for New Jersey residents who are deaf and hard of hearing;

     (2)] make recommendations to the Commissioner of Human Services for cost-effective provision, coordination, and improvement of services for individuals who are deaf, deaf-blind, and hard of hearing;

     (2)   increase public awareness of the specific needs and abilities of individuals who are deaf, deaf-blind, or hard of hearing, and consider the need for new State programs concerning these populations;

     (3)   undertake active efforts to recognize and include the viewpoints and experiences of individuals from diverse backgrounds who are deaf, deaf-blind, or hard of hearing;

     (4)1  work with relevant educational providers, the Department of Education, and other relevant organizations and agencies 1to make recommendations as to how1 to improve and expand postsecondary education options for 1[the] individuals who are1 deaf 1, deaf-blind,1 and hard of hearing;

     1[(3)] (5)1  work with relevant employers, the Department of Labor and Workforce Development, and other relevant organizations and agencies to 1establish best practices that1 ensure equal opportunity in employment options and outcomes for 1[the] individuals who are1 deaf 1, deaf-blind,1 and hard of hearing;

     1[(4)] (6)1  identify process improvements in the delivery of government services for 1[the]1 deaf 1, deaf-blind,1 and hard of hearing 1residents1 ; and

     1[(5)] (7)1  ensure public transparency in the advisory council's activities through the publication of meeting minutes, the sharing of pertinent reports and data, and the public identification of ex-officio advisory council members.

     [b.] e.  1[The advisory council shall organize as soon as practicable following the appointment of a majority of its members, and may meet and hold hearings at such places and times as it shall designate.  A majority of the appointed membership shall constitute a quorum.

     f.]1  Members of the [Advisory Council on the Deaf and Hard of Hearing] advisory council shall serve without compensation, but shall be entitled to reimbursement for necessary and reasonable expenses incurred in performance of their duties, within the limits of funds appropriated or otherwise made available to the council for its purposes. [Vacancies on the council shall be filled for the unexpired term. Members may be removed by the Governor for cause.] 

     1[g.] f.1     The Department of Human Services shall provide professional and clerical staff to the advisory council, as may be necessary for the advisory council's purposes, and the advisory council shall be entitled to call upon the services of any State, county, or municipal department, board, commission, or agency, as may be available to it for its purposes.

     1[h.] g.1     In executing its duties under this section, the advisory council shall consult with associations, organizations, and individuals who are knowledgeable about the needs of persons who are deaf or hard of hearing, and the needs of their families.

(cf: P.L.1995, c.168, s.1)

 

     2.    This act shall take effect immediately.

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