Murphy Wants Changes In School Panic Alarm Bill

Aug 27, 2018

Governor Phil Murphy has conditionally vetoed a bill requiring all New Jersey public school buildings to be equipped with a panic alarm linked with law enforcement agencies.

Murphy says the measure proposed funding the panic alarm systems through bonds issued by the Schools Development Authority that has nearly exhausted its borrowing capacity.  He wants a revision so the funds come from a new bond act that will be on the November ballot. He also wants the SDA to oversee the purchase and installation of the alarms.

Assemblyman Ralph Caputo expects lawmakers will go along with Murphy’s recommendations.

“If we had the money in the SDA now and the money wasn’t committed, I think the governor would have signed it and there wouldn’t be a CV. But some of the other things that he’s done is perfect and we’ll wait for the approval of the public.”

Senator Ron Rice says it would be a worthy investment.

“I think it’s very important particularly with all the stuff that’s been taking place throughout the country with schools. So. it’s another tool to help them protect those students and those workers in school buildings. And I think once you do it, it would pay itself in terms of people feeling more comfortable.”

Murphy also wants the Schools Development Authority to oversee purchasing and installing the panic alarm systems.

Caputo says the panic alarms could save lives by speeding police response to emergencies.