Legislation sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg and Senator Kristin M. Corrado, that was written to reflect the recommendations of the Legislative Select Oversight Committee (LSOC), passed the Senate today.
The Senate approved bipartisan legislation sponsored by Sen. Kristin Corrado providing new safeguards to protect government employees and the taxpayers they serve. (SenateNJ.com)
The LSOC committee was formed to investigate hiring practices of the Murphy administration, and specifically to determine how Al Alvarez was hired for a top job after being accused of sexual assault by fellow campaign staffer Katie Brennan. The hearings culminated in a report that outlined failures and mishandlings by the administration and provided recommendations on how best to ensure a safe workplace. The recommendations included: strengthening employer training and hiring practices, changing how allegations of sexual misconduct are investigated, allocating additional funding to gubernatorial transitions for additional background checks and expanding disclosure requirements for state employment applicants, among others.
“The hiring of Al Alvarez was the result of inexperience and the indefensible disregard for a survivor and her credible allegations of sexual assault,” said Senator Weinberg (D-Bergen). “And even today, there are still many unanswered questions about how the campaign treated their female employees. However, I am grateful to my colleagues in both houses and on both sides of the aisle for their survivor-centered approach and their support for this legislation that will improve future hiring practices, regardless of the candidate or party.”
“Our work on the Legislative Select Oversight Committee Investigation identified serious deficiencies in the employment practices of the Murphy Administration, including the hiring of questionable individuals, the replacement of skilled employees with unqualified patronage hires, and allegations that employment records were tampered with to hide wrongdoing,” said Senator Kristin Corrado (R- Bergen/Essex/Morris/Passaic). “We also uncovered a disturbing unwillingness by the Governor and his staff to address allegations of sexual assault and abusive behavior by those in his inner circle. This bipartisan package of legislation addresses these issues by providing critical new safeguards to protect government employees and the taxpayers they serve.”
- 3975: (Weinberg and Corrado) The bill would require the chairperson of the Civil Service Commission to designate a Civil Service-based human resources professional to serve as Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action Officer for gubernatorial transitions. Senate Vote: 40-0
- 3976: (Weinberg and Corrado) The bill would amend the Gubernatorial Transition Act to authorize payment of expenses related to confidential character, financial, and criminal background investigations of applicants for positions of a lower rank than cabinet-level when deemed necessary by the Governor-elect or the Governor-elect’s designated assistant. Senate Vote: 40-0
- 3979: (Weinberg and Corrado) The bill would require the Civil Service Commission to promulgate rules and regulations concerning recordkeeping and record retention requirements related to the recruitment, selection, hiring, and employment records of persons in the State unclassified service. Senate Vote: 39-0
- 3982: (Weinberg and Corrado) The bill would specify certain requirements that must be included in the rules governing a State agency’s review of equal employment and discrimination complaints. Senate Vote: 38-0
- 3983: (Weinberg) The bill would require the Civil Service Commission to ensure that all State employees responsible for managing and investigating complaints of harassment or discrimination receive additional training by the New Jersey Attorney General’s Advocacy Institute or another organization with expertise in response to and prevention of sexual violence. Senate Vote: 40-0
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