SENATE, No. 3011

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

217th LEGISLATURE

INTRODUCED FEBRUARY 13, 2017

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator† ROBERT M. GORDON

District 38 (Bergen and Passaic)

Senator† LORETTA WEINBERG

District 37 (Bergen)

Assemblywoman† ANNETTE QUIJANO

District 20 (Union)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

†††† Prohibits disclosure of certain religious affiliation information by State or local government agencies.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

†††† As introduced.

 


An Act concerning the disclosure of religious affiliation information, supplementing chapter 14 of Title 52 of the Revised Statutes, and amending P.L.1966, c.37.

 

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

 

†††† 1. †(New section) †a.† Notwithstanding the provisions of any other law to the contrary, a State or local government agency or public employee acting under color of law shall not:

†††† (1) provide or disclose to the federal government personally identifiable information regarding the religious beliefs, practices, or affiliation, or national origin or ethnicity, of any individual that the federal government requests for compiling a list, registry, or database of individuals based on religious belief, practice, or affiliation, or national origin or ethnicity; or

†††† (2) use State or local government agency money, facilities, property, equipment, or personnel to assist in the creation, implementation, or enforcement of any government program compiling a list, registry, or database of personally identifiable information about individuals based on religious belief, practice, or affiliation, or national origin or ethnicity, for law enforcement or immigration purposes.

†††† b. Nothing in this section shall prevent a State or local government agency from compiling aggregate information regarding religious affiliation, national origin, or ethnicity or from exchanging such information with other local, State, or federal government agencies; provided that a State or local government agency shall not compile or exchange any personally identifiable information regarding religious affiliation, national origin, or ethnicity.

 

†††† 2.† Section 3 of P.L.1966, c.37 (C.52:17B-5.3) is amended to read as follows:

†††† 3. a.† All local and county police authorities shall submit a quarterly report to the Attorney General, on forms prescribed by the Attorney General, which report shall contain the number and nature of offenses committed within their respective jurisdictions, the disposition of such matters, information relating to criminal street gang activities within their respective jurisdictions, information relating to any offense directed against a person or group, or their property, by reason of their race, color, religion, gender, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, or ethnicity and such other information as the Attorney General may require, respecting information relating to the cause and prevention of crime, recidivism, the rehabilitation of criminals and the proper administration of criminal justice.

†††† b.††† A law enforcement officer who responds to an offense involving criminal street gang activity shall complete a gang related incident offense report on a form prescribed by the Superintendent of State Police.† All information contained in the gang related incident offense report shall be forwarded to the Superintendent of State Police for inclusion in the Uniform Crime Report.

†††† c.†††† A law enforcement officer who seizes or recovers a firearm that was unlawfully possessed, used for an unlawful purpose, recovered from a crime scene or is reasonably believed to have been used in or associated with the commission of a crime, or is otherwise acquired as an abandoned or discarded firearm shall complete, within 24 hours of the entering of the required information relating to that firearm into the New Jersey Trace System and such other State and federal database systems as prescribed by the superintendent, a seized or recovered firearms incident report on a form prescribed by the superintendent.† The incident report shall be filed with the State Police in a manner and time prescribed by the superintendent.

†††† d.† Notwithstanding the provisions of this section or any other law to the contrary, State and local law enforcement officers and authorities shall not:

†††† (1) collect information on the religious belief, practice, or affiliation of any individual except:

†††† (a) as part of a targeted investigation of an individual based on reasonable suspicion to believe that the individual has engaged in criminal activity and a clear nexus exists between the criminal activity and the specific information collected about the individualís religious belief, practice, or affiliation;

†††† (b)† as part of an investigation into a crime of bias intimidation in violation of N.J.S.2C:16-1; or

†††† (c) †when necessary to provide religious accommodations; or

†††† (2)†† use a law enforcement authorityís money, facilities, property, equipment, or personnel to investigate, enforce, or assist in the investigation or enforcement of, any criminal, civil, or administrative violation, or warrant for a violation, of any requirement that individuals register their religion, national origin, or ethnicity with the federal government.

(cf: P.L.2013, c.162, s.2)

 

†††† 3. †This act shall take effect immediately.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

†††† This bill directs State and local governments to refrain from disclosing to the federal government personally identifiable information, regarding the religious beliefs, practices, or affiliation, or national origin or ethnicity, of any individual, which the federal government requests for compiling a list, registry, or database of individuals based on religious affiliation, national origin, or ethnicity.† The bill further prohibits the use of State or local government agency money, facilities, property, equipment, or personnel to assist in the creation, implementation, or enforcement of any government program compiling a list, registry, or database of personally identifiable information about individuals based on religious affiliation, national origin, or ethnicity.

†††† Additionally, the bill would prohibit State and local law enforcement officers and authorities from collecting information about an individualís religious beliefs, practices, or affiliations, except when the information is specifically relevant to a targeted investigation of that individual, when necessary to investigate a crime of bias intimidation, or for purposes of providing religious accommodations.† The bill further prohibits the use of money, facilities, property, equipment, or personnel by State and local law enforcement authorities to investigate or enforce any criminal, civil, or administrative violation, or warrant for a violation, of a requirement that individuals register with the federal government or any federal agency based on religion, national origin, or ethnicity.