In Brief

Bills making changes to mandatory retirement for public workers advance to Murphy’s desk

By: - January 11, 2022 3:04 pm

The bills are intended to help staffing issues in the state Legislature and the New Jersey State Police. (Mary Iuvone for New Jersey Monitor)

Lawmakers advanced two bills Monday to clarify when state employees can work beyond their mandatory retirement dates, part of an attempt to address some of the labor issues plaguing the state.

The first measure, A6262, would allow retired public employees to return to employment on a part-time basis in the Legislature under certain circumstances without the change affecting their pensions or benefits.

Under the bill, retirees must have already reached retirement age, can be rehired as part-time workers only, and can return to the state payroll for up to two years. The bill wouldn’t apply to any former members of the state Legislature.

It passed both chambers Monday, just four days after being introduced. It advanced out of the Assembly 59-18, with two abstentions, and passed the Senate with only one member, Sen. Nia Gill (D-Essex), voting no.

Another measure, S4252, would change an already revised law regarding mandatory retirement for New Jersey State Police employees.

Early in the pandemic, the employees were allowed to delay their retirement — the mandatory retirement age is 55 — to the end of the pandemic. But, the measure says, that change blocked promotional opportunities as more State Police employees stayed on the payroll.

The new bill would extend the mandatory retirement date by 90 days only, and retirement benefits would not be affected. It passed both chambers unanimously.

Both bills are headed to Gov. Phil Murphy’s desk, who has until Jan. 18 to decide whether to sign those, and hundreds of other measures, into law.

In response to staffing shortages in schools, lawmakers advanced two bills Monday that would eliminate the in-state residency requirement for public school teachers and allow retired teachers to return to the classroom and still collect their pensions.

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Sophie Nieto-Munoz
Sophie Nieto-Munoz

Sophie Nieto-Muñoz, a New Jersey native and former Trenton statehouse reporter for NJ.com, shined a spotlight on the state’s crumbling unemployment system and won several awards for investigative reporting from the New Jersey Press Association. She was a finalist for the Livingston Award for Young Journalists for her report on PetSmart's grooming practices, which was also recognized by the New York Press Club. Sophie speaks Spanish and is proud to connect to the Latinx community through her reporting.

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