Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Nicholas Chiaravalloti, Angela V. McKnight, and John Wisniewski designed to further regulate autobus operations or “jitney services” passed the NJ General Assembly.
The bill hopes to protect communities by “requiring autobuses to register and receive approval from the municipalities in which they operate.”
“We need to empower local communities who are dealing with these public safety issues. This legislation aims to give the power back to the municipality where these autobuses operate,” added Chiaravalloti.
The legislation (A-4323) would require the owner or operator of an autobus to register with each municipality in the State in which seeks to operate. A person who violates the registration and consent provisions of the bill is subject to a civil penalty of $1,000 for a first violation, $2,000 for a second violation, and $5,000 for a third or subsequent violation.
“The tragic loss of 11-year old George Gonzalez was a sad reminder of how vital it is to regulate commuter buses and ensure that they serve their communities safely,” said Chiaravalloti.
Additionally, Chiaravalloti, Mayor James Davis of Bayonne, Hudson County Sheriff Frank Schillari, and Freeholder Kenneth Kopacz announced a joint meeting for next week to discuss stronger enforcement of current laws and future actions that can be taken.