An Act establishing a Task Force to examine the “Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act.”
Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. a. There is established a task force for the purpose of examining, evaluating, and making recommendations regarding the implementation of the“Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act,” P.L.2002, c.83 (C.18A:37-13 et seq.), as amended and supplemented by P.L.2010, c.122 (C.18A:37-13.1 et al.).
b. The task force shall consist of 11 members as follows:
(1) eight members who each have a background in, or special knowledge of, the legal, policy, educational, social, or psychological aspects of bullying in public schools, appointed as follows: two appointed by the Senate President; two appointed by the Speaker of the General Assembly; and four appointed by the Governor;
(2) the chairperson of the Anti-Bullying Task Force established pursuant to section 4 of P.L.2012, c.1; and
(3) two members of the public, to be appointed by the Governor, one of whom is a family member of a student who has experienced bullying and one of whom is a student over the age of 17 who personally has experienced bullying.
c. Appointments to the task force shall be made within 30 days of the effective date of this act. Vacancies in the membership of the task force shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointments were made.
d. Members of the task force shall serve without compensation, but shall be reimbursed for necessary expenditures incurred in the performance of their duties as members of the task force within the limits of funds appropriated or otherwise made available to the task force for its purposes.
2. a. The task force shall organize as soon as practicable, but no later than 30 days following the appointment of its members. The task force shall choose a chairperson from among its members and shall appoint a secretary who need not be a member of the task force.
b. The Department of Education shall provide such stenographic, clerical, and other administrative assistants, and such professional staff as the task force requires to carry out its work. The task force also shall be entitled to call to its assistance and avail itself of the services of the employees of any State, county, or municipal department, board, bureau, commission, or agency as it may require and as may be available for its purposes.
3. a. It shall be the duty of the task force to study and evaluate the current implementation of the “Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act,” to identify areas for improvement, and to make recommendations regarding any appropriate changes or updates to the law or regulations implementing the law. The task force shall:
(1) examine and evaluate the effectiveness of the implementation of the “Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act” in the schools of the State;
(2) examine any unintended consequences resulting from implementation of the “Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act” and the regulations promulgated pursuant to the act including, but not limited to, impacts of the law on athletic coaches; and
(3) present any recommendations deemed necessary and appropriate to modify or update the “Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights Act” and its implementing regulations.
b. The task force shall hold at least one public hearing during the course of its work in order to receive public input on the issues being studied by the task force and shall invite the participation of students and families who have experienced bullying in any public hearings held by the task force.
4. The task force shall issue a final report of its findings and recommendations to the Governor, and to the Legislature pursuant to section 2 of P.L.1991, c.164 (C.52:14-19.1), no later than 180 days after the task force organizes.
5. This act shall take effect immediately, and the task force shall expire 30 days after the issuance of its report.
Approved July 19, 2019.