TRENTON, N.J. – After passing the legislature unanimously, Governor Phil Murphy signed a bill reimbursing county prosecutors overseeing state and interstate law enforcement agencies. The law, sponsored by Assemblyman Kevin Rooney, was drafted after the Bergen County Prosecutors Office had to investigate the Palisades Parkway Police Department over eight months.
“Local taxpayers cannot afford to fund investigations into state agencies,” said Rooney (R-Bergen). “Prosecutor’s work on tight budgets, and they need to be responsible with every dollar. If a state agency is acting out of order, the state should be on the hook.”
Bergen prosecutors had to examine the Palisades department for violating guidelines on high-speed chases and investigations of officer misconduct. The office also examined deaths of suspects and a scandal involving the police chief. The bill is retroactive to January 1, 2017 to cover the costs of the investigation.