STATE – New Jersey’s financial disclosure rules for state Supreme Court justices don’t do enough to let the public identify potential conflicts of interest, according to a new report from the Center for Public Integrity.
No state lived up to the federal government’s standards for U.S. Supreme Court justices, and only eight escaped a failing grade. New Jersey received 34 points out of a possible 100 on the center’s grading scale, which was based on a slightly tougher version of disclosure requirements for federal judges.
“Similar to 11 other states, the Garden State has a self-policing form of oversight, with the Supreme Court having ultimate say in disciplinary matters of judges even if a justice is involved,” the report said. “Furthermore, the Advisory Committee on Judicial Conduct must ask permission of the Supreme Court to investigate if a Supreme Court member’s ethics are questioned.
“The state also does not seek any information about judges’ financial liabilities. New Jersey has one of the highest reporting thresholds for gifts. Judges only have to disclose gifts worth more than $1,000 without specifying their exact value.”
The report praised New Jersey for being one of the few states to require financial information about a judge’s spouse and dependent children.
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