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  • NJ A2487
  • Permits municipality to enact ordinance regulating where sex offenders may reside; restricts locations of certain child care centers and school bus stops.
Introduced
(2/4/2016)
In Committee
(2/4/2016)
Crossed OverPassedSignedDead/Failed/Vetoed
2016-2017 Regular Session
This bill permits a municipality to enact an ordinance establishing areas in or around elementary or secondary schools, playgrounds, or child care centers where certain registered sex offenders may be prohibited from residing. The bill also imposes restrictions on the location of school bus stops and the siting of child care centers so that they are not situated near the residence of a high risk sex offender. It is the Legislature's intent to enhance the public safety by permitting municipalities to enact ordinances to prevent convicted sex offenders who have committed crimes against minors from residing within 500 feet of a school, playground or child care center, subject to certain statutorily-enumerated exceptions, and also by prohibiting the siting of school bus stops and child care centers near the residences of high risk sex offenders. The bill establishes specific limitations that the ordinance may impose on sex offenders establishing residences. These ordinances would be applicable to "persons subject to limitations," which the bill defines as a person over the age of 21 subject to the registration requirements set forth in Megan's Law who has been convicted of, adjudicated delinquent or found not guilty by reason of insanity for a sex offense enumerated in Megan's Law in which the victim of the offense was under 18 years of age, except for those whose risk of re-offense has been determined to be low. Under the bill's provisions, such persons would be prohibited from residing within 500 feet from the real property comprising an elementary or secondary school, playground, or child care center, provided that any such ordinance shall not be formulated in a manner that would prohibit these persons from residing in every residentially-zoned area within the municipality. The municipal ordinance shall not be applied to prohibit such a person from residing within 500 feet of an elementary or secondary school, playground, or child care center if: (1) the person is required to serve a sentence at a jail, prison, juvenile facility or other correctional institution or facility or is involuntarily committed to a psychiatric, mental health or other facility which is located within 500 feet of the elementary or secondary school, playground, or child care center; (2) the person resides and receives services at an institution, mental health or other facility licensed or permitted by the Department of Human Services which is located within 500 feet of an elementary or secondary school, playground, or child care center; (3) the parole board, after considering the person's housing options, determines that a needs-based exception for the person is required; or (4) a court that discharges the person from a psychiatric facility determines that an exception is appropriate. The bill provides that an ordinance shall not be applied to prohibit such a person from continuing to reside at a residence established by that person within the municipality prior to the enactment of the ordinance. An ordinance enacted pursuant to the bill shall provide that the municipal engineer shall produce a map for the purpose of depicting the location and boundaries of the areas. The original of every map shall be filed with the clerk of the municipality and shall be maintained as an official record of the municipality. This bill also prohibits a school board from locating a school bus stop within 250 feet of the residence of a high risk (tier three) sex offender unless the relocation of the school bus stop creates a more dangerous condition for a child. In making this determination, the school board is required to consult with the chief law enforcement officer of the municipality. The bill requires the school board to adopt a resolution stating the reason for the relocation of the school bus stop. Finally, the bill prohibits child care centers from being located within 500 feet of the residence of a tier three sex offender.
Judiciary
Introduced, Referred to Assembly Judiciary Committee  (on 2/4/2016)
 
 
Date Chamber Action Description
2/4/2016 A Introduced, Referred to Assembly Judiciary Committee
Date Motion Yea Nay Other
None specified