SENATE, No. 2919
STATE OF NEW JERSEY
INTRODUCED SEPTEMBER 17, 2020
Senator FRED H. MADDEN, JR.
District 4 (Camden and Gloucester)
Establishes “Remote Work Study Commission.”
CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT
As reported by the Senate Labor Committee on February 11, 2021, with amendments.
An Act establishing the “Remote Work Study Commission.”
Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. a. There is established the “Remote Work Study Commission.” The purpose of the commission shall be to evaluate whether the advantages of remote work exceed its disadvantages, whether remote work has positive effects on the productivity of workers, and the effect that the coronavirus 2019 pandemic has had on remote work.
b. The commission shall consist of 11 members as follows:
(1) the Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development, ex officio, or a designee;
(2) two members of the Senate to be appointed by the President of the Senate, which members shall not be of the same political party;
(3) two members of the General Assembly to be appointed by the Speaker of the General Assembly, which members shall not be of the same political party;
(4) three public members appointed by the President of the Senate, who shall include a representative from the New Jersey Business and Industry Association, 1a representative of the New Jersey Commerce and Industry Association, and1 an individual with expertise in issues relating to the work of the commission 1[, and a person who performs professional, desk, managerial, or administrative work]1; and
(5) three public members appointed by the Speaker of the General Assembly, who shall include a representative from the New Jersey Chamber of Commerce, an individual with expertise in issues relating to the work of the commission, and a person who performs professional, desk, managerial, or administrative work.
c. Appointments to the commission shall be made within 30 days after the effective date of this act. Vacancies in the membership of the commission shall be filled in the same manner in which the original appointment was made.
d. Members of the commission shall serve without compensation, but shall be reimbursed for necessary and reasonable expenses incurred in the performance of their duties as members of the commission within the limits of funds appropriated or otherwise made available to the commission for its purposes.
2. The commission shall organize as soon as practicable following the appointment of a majority of its members, but no later than 60 days after the effective date of this act. The commission shall select a chairperson from among its members and shall appoint a secretary who need not be a member of the commission. The commission shall meet at the call of the chairperson at the times and places it may deem appropriate and necessary to fulfill its duties.
3. It shall be the duty of the commission to evaluate:
a. Whether the advantages of remote work exceed its disadvantages, including:
(1) whether remote work increases employee engagement;
(2) whether remote work increases employee retention rates;
(3) whether workplace stress is reduced;
(4) whether company overtime has increased or decreased;
(5) whether there are added expenses while working from home, which includes, but is not limited to:
(b) childcare; and
(6) whether companies save money on expenses by having their employees work from home and the amount that companies save on average; and
(7) whether tax deductions are affected for employees working from home.
b. Whether remote work has positive effects on the productivity of workers, which includes determining:
(1) sources of distraction and whether it affects worker performance overall; and
(2) the effect that remote work has on employee collaboration.
c. The effect that the coronavirus 2019 pandemic has had on remote work, which includes, but is not limited to:
(1) determining how companies implementing remote work have been regulating overtime;
(2) the percentage of employees using their personal computers for remote work;
(3) the percentage of employees working remotely with their children present; and
(4) the percentage of companies that will be moving to a permanent remote work format.
4. The commission shall be entitled to call to its assistance and avail itself of the services of the officials and employees of the State and its political subdivisions and their departments, boards, bureaus, commissions, and agencies as it may require and as may be available to it for the purposes of the commission. The Department of Labor and Workforce Development shall provide staff support services to the commission.
5. The commission shall issue a final report of its findings and conclusions to the Governor and, pursuant to section 2 of P.L.1991, c.164 (C.52:14-19.1), to the Legislature no later than one year following the first meeting of the commission.
6. This act shall take effect immediately and shall expire upon the submission by the commission of its report pursuant to section 5 of this act.