Bill Text: NJ S2511 | 2020-2021 | Regular Session | Chaptered


Bill Title: Accelerates rescinding of certain juvenile delinquency fines and making discretionary post-incarceration supervision due to COVID-19 pandemic.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 2-0)

Status: (Passed) 2020-07-01 - Approved P.L.2020, c.50. [S2511 Detail]

Download: New_Jersey-2020-S2511-Chaptered.html

1 - T&E & Notes to C.2A:4A-43,

N.J.S.2C:35-15 &

C.2C:43-3.1

2 - T&E &

Note to

C.2A:4A-44

 


P.L. 2020, CHAPTER 50, approved July 1, 2020

Senate, No. 2511

 

 


An Act accelerating implementation of certain juvenile justice initiatives due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

 

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

 

     1.    The following fines and assessments shall not be imposed on a juvenile adjudicated delinquent:

     (1) fines pursuant to paragraph (8) of subsection b. of section 24 of P.L.1982, c.77 (C.2A:4A-43);

     (2) assessments pursuant to paragraph (2) of subsection a. of N.J.S.2C:35-15; and

     (3) assessments pursuant to subparagraph (b) of paragraph (2) of subsection a. of section 2 of P.L.1979, c.396 (C:2C:43-3.1). 

 

     2.    A term of post-incarceration supervision shall be imposed  pursuant to paragraph (5) of subsection d. of section 25 of P.L.1982, c.77 (C.2A:4A-44) following a juvenile's release from custody only if it is deemed necessary to effectuate the juvenile's rehabilitation and reintegration into society.  Post-incarceration supervision shall not exceed six months, except the term may be extended for an additional six months if continuation of the post-incarceration supervision is deemed necessary to effectuate the juvenile's rehabilitation and reintegration into society.  Post-incarceration supervision shall not exceed one year.  Post-incarceration supervision shall not be imposed on any juvenile who has completed a period of parole supervision of six months or more.  The term of post-incarceration supervision shall commence on the date of the expiration of the juvenile's maximum sentence.  During the term of post-incarceration supervision the juvenile shall remain in the community and in the legal custody of the Juvenile Justice Commission.  The juvenile shall not be required to enter or complete a residential community release program, residential treatment program, or other out-of-home placement as a condition of post-incarceration supervision.  A term of post-incarceration supervision may be terminated if the juvenile has made a satisfactory adjustment in the community while under supervision and if continued supervision is not required.

 

     3.    This act shall take effect immediately and shall expire on October 31, 2020.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

     This bill accelerates the implementation of certain provisions of P.L.2019, c.363, which made various changes to sentencing,  incarceration, and parole of juveniles adjudicated delinquent.  This law was enacted on January 20, 2020, but its provisions are not effective until November 1, 2020.  The bill makes several provisions of this law effective immediately due to adverse effects on these juveniles attributable to the COVID-19 pandemic.

     Several provisions of current law authorize or require the imposition of fines on juveniles adjudicated delinquent.  P.L.2019, c.363 specifically eliminates the following fines:  (1) those that can be imposed at the discretion of the court as a disposition for a juvenile adjudicated delinquent; (2) mandatory assessments imposed for certain controlled dangerous substance violations which are allocated to the Drug Enforcement and Demand Reduction ("DEDR") Fund; and (3) mandatory assessments for convictions of violent crimes that are dedicated to purposes benefiting victims of crime.

     According to the sponsor, fines imposed on juveniles adjudicated delinquent have proven to be an undue barrier to successful rehabilitation and reentry of these juveniles because they often result in the criminalization of poverty and the exacerbation of racial disparities. As such, the Legislature made a policy decision to eliminate certain juvenile delinquency fines in P.L.2019, c.363.  The burden these fines constitute has been further exacerbated during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Therefore, there should be no delay in eliminating these fines. 

     The sponsor further notes that in some instances juveniles currently subject to mandatory post-incarceration supervision because of the extended effective date of P.L.2019, c.363 are being returned to custody for technical violations.  These juveniles are being put in unnecessary danger of contracting COVID-19 for minor infractions.  Therefore, the provisions of P.L.2019, c.363 replacing the current mandatory term of post-incarceration with discretionary post-incarceration supervision imposed only under strictly limited conditions should immediately be implemented to protect the health and safety of both the juveniles and the community during the COVID-19 pandemic.

                                

 

     Accelerates rescinding of certain juvenile delinquency fines and making discretionary post-incarceration supervision due to COVID-19 pandemic. 

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