ASSEMBLY, No. 3095

 

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

 

210th LEGISLATURE

 

INTRODUCED DECEMBER 16, 2002

 

 

Sponsored by:

Assemblyman JOSEPH PENNACCHIO

District 26 (Morris and Passaic)

Assemblyman ALEX DECROCE

District 26 (Morris and Passaic)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

    Requires quarterly reports to the Legislature on Governor's use of State helicopter and prohibits the use thereof for personal and political events.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

    As introduced.

 


An Act concerning the use of State helicopters and supplementing P.L.1986, c.106 (C.26:2K-35 et seq.).

 

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

 

    1. a. The Governor or a member of the Governor's staff is prohibited from using a State helicopter as transport to attend a political or personal event that is not an emergency or directly related to carrying out the duties of the Governor. All use by the Governor or a member of the Governor's staff of a State helicopter shall be documented by the New Jersey Department of Law and Public Safety, Division of State Police Aviation Unit.

    As used in this section, the term "political event" includes but is not limited to an affair intended to raise funds for the nomination, election or re-election of a candidate for office in New Jersey, the delivery of an address in support of or in opposition to the policies of a political party in this State or anywhere in the United States, or a testimonial affair, as defined in paragraph k. of section 3 of P.L.1973, c.83 (C.19:44A-3).

    b. Two months after the effective date of this act, P.L. , c. (now pending before the Legislature as this bill) and every three months thereafter, the State Police Aviation Unit shall report to the Joint Budget Oversight Committee, the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee and the Assembly Budget Committee, or their successors. The report shall contain, but need not be limited to, cost analyses concerning the Office of the Governor activities including the number of flights, the names of individuals transported on each flight, flight destinations, flight hours, fuel and maintenance expenses, and salary expenses.

 

    2. This act shall take effect immediately.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

    Former Governor Whitman ordered the executive helicopter transferred to the New Jersey Emergency Medical Services Helicopter Response Program in 1994; a joint program that was established by the Legislature in order to provide rapid emergency transport and care for trauma patients in the State. However, New Jersey’s governors have access to these helicopters to effectively and efficiently conduct State business.

    This privilege is now being abused and State helicopters are being used to transport the Governor and staff members to political and personal events.

    This bill prohibits the Governor or a member of the Governor's staff from using a State helicopter as transportation to attend a political or personal event and requires a quarterly report on the use of State helicopters by the Governor or members of the Governor's staff.