TRENTON – A law requiring newly hired public employees to live in New Jersey or to move to the state within one year of taking a public position takes effect today.
“With our economy still fragile and many residents remaining out of work, this residency requirement is another step we are taking to help New Jerseyans,” said state Sen. Donald Norcross (D-Camden), who sponsored the legislation. “The New Jersey First Act ensures that, going forward, we make an effort to support our residents as they seek employment. With this law, we will also help keep tax dollars in the state and assist in protecting our state’s economic health.”
The “New Jersey First Act” allows one year for individuals hired on or after Sept. 1 to move or live within the state. It also creates a process for employees facing extreme hardship or other extraordinary circumstances to seek an exemption from the residency requirement by petitioning a five-member committee established under the law. Current employees living over state lines are exempt from the residency requirement.
The law covers all state, county and municipal employees, as well as employees of public authorities, boards, agencies and commissions. It also applies to employees working within the educational system. However, it does provide some flexibility to institutions of higher education to ensure they are able to compete with similarly situated colleges and universities in other states.
The law was signed by the Governor in May.
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