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Michael Testa

Posted on: December 11, 2023

Senate Advances Testa Bill Allowing Law Enforcement to use Forfeiture Funds for Community Outreach

new-jersey-state-seal

Senator Michael Testa (R-1) released the following statement today after S-587 was approved by the New Jersey Senate:

“This legislation will give New Jersey law enforcement agencies more flexibility with funds that are seized during an investigation—which is a crucial piece missing from existing civil asset forfeiture law,” said Testa. "Under this bill, law enforcement can now use these funds to support important initiatives, such as community outreach programs, which can help grow and reinforce relationships between police and local neighborhoods."

Under current law, proceeds from the forfeiture of private property are designated for the exclusive use of the law enforcement agency that contributed to the investigation resulting in the forfeiture, and are to be used solely for law enforcement purposes.

S-587 allows law enforcement agencies to use proceeds from civil asset forfeiture for the additional purposes of:

  • promoting community outreach;
  • providing diversity training for law enforcement officers; and
  • establishing and implementing minority selection and recruitment programs.

You can view the full bill here.

For further comment or background from Sen. Testa, please contact Jonathan Azzara in the SRO communications department.

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