January 09, 2011
The Civil Service Commission has Updated Police Promotional Testing on its Website
The New Jersey Civil Service Commision notified the State Lodge of the anticipated resolution of a lawsuit
brought by the U.S. Department of Justice against the state and its police promotional exam. A notice will be emailed
to local lodges of the terms of consent decree as well as instructions on filing objections to the decree at a open fairness
hearing. The notice further advises that the dates for promotional testing have been postponed indefinately.
information can be found on the Civil Service Commissions website.
Protecting the Rights of Our Members
Last night's action
by the legislature in passing Assembly Bill A-3876 and sending it to the governor for his signature was the Culmination of the effort of the F.O.P. to protect the rights of our members who have been
laid off due to the economy. If signed into law, our brothers and sisters who have been out of work for an extended
period of time will have their Police Training Commission Certification extended from the previous 3 years to 5 years.
This was accomplished through the efforts of your State Lodge staff and our professional lobbyist
November 10, 2011
Special Notice for Chapter 330 Retirees
Contrary to what has been reported by the representatives of the state's newly created
"State Health Benefits Plan Design Committee", substantial changes were made to the State Health Benefits Plan that
will be costly to Chapter 330 Retirees. For example, a retiree who in 2011 opted for the Aetna HMO for a family
plan, paid $385.66 per month for health insurance. The same plan will cost the retiree $631.92 in 2012. Unfortunately,
the open enrollment period expires on November 11, 2011 so it is imperative for members to review their individual circumstances
and plans and make any changes before Friday. Below is a link to a printable comparison document and a link to the State
Health Benefits Website. We, at the State Office apologize for the late notice but we only just discovered the
hidden charges thanks to alert members.
NJ Attorney General Approves Taser's for Use by Police
New Jersey Attorney General Paula T. Dow announced approved devices in
her revised "Stun Gun" policy. The New Jersey Fraternal Order of Police has long advocated for the availability
of these electronic control devices for law enforcement officers in NJ. These devices provide an extra measure of safety
for officers in the performance of their duty.
an unprecedented action, the leaders of all the major public sector unions in the State of New Jersey have jointly filed suit
against the governor and the legislature for violating the constitutionally guaranteed rights of more than 500,000 workers
in the state. The F.O.P. has worked closely with the state’s public sector unions from the very beginning because
it recognized the union busting sentiment of the governor and others in the legislature. This process is part of the
ongoing bleeding of cash from the unions by anti-union politicians who continue to refuse to accept their responsibility in
creating the financial crisis within government. The F.O.P. continues to be at the forefront of statewide action to
protect the rights, benefits and salaries of the professional law enforcement officers who protect our communities
Responsibilities of Membership
In the upcoming
issue of the FOP News there appears an article that asks every members to send a completed form letter to the members of the New
Jersey Legislature in the district where they vote. Our members have been catagorized by politicians as being part of
a "Special Interest Group" because they only hear from your State Lodge Officers in Trenton. It is vital that
all our members voices be heard so that the message is clear and simple.
Link to Letter
Link to NJ Legislators
F.O.P. Labor Council Director Selected
to State Arbitration Task Force
Ron Bakley was selected by State Senate President
Stephen Sweeney to review arbitration awards and collective bargaining agreements for public safety unions in New Jersey.
This prestigous selection further demonstrates the active participation in all matters related to law enforcement in
Click here for the Media Annoucement
Labor Council Announcement
New and Updated Employment Opportunities
The F.O.P. continues to reach out
to cities all across America who are looking for qualified and trained police officers. Through the nationwide
connections found only in the F.O.P. we have added more information to our "Members Only" section. We remain
committed to assisting our members finding employment in these difficult economic times.
Civil Service Announcement
The 2010/2011 Police Sergeant
testing process has been modified to include both a written (multiple-choice) component, as well as a video-based, essay component.
Much time and research has already been devoted to the development of this new testing format. However, the CSC is currently
experiencing unforeseen delays associated with certain aspects of the new testing process. For these reasons, the anticipated
test date must be postponed from January to early April, 2011. Updated information regarding the new testing process
is now available in the 2010 Police Sergeant Orientation Guide which may be found at: http://www.state.nj.us/csc/jobs/guides.htm.
Eligible lists which are set to expire in February, 2011, and have not reached their four-year statutory limit, will
be extended until new lists are available
Law Enforcement Report
The State F.O.P. is Nationally Recognized
as the Leader in New Jersey
The Bureau of National Affairs Inc. in its most recent "Government Employee Relations Report:" reached out
to President Brannigan for his insight on a number of topics of concern to law enforcement. An article on the governor's
pension reform proposals can also be found in the report. A copy of the report can be viewed using the link below.
Government Employee Relations Report
Police Pensions and Benefits
The governor, in his State of the State
Address yesterday announced what the New Jersey F.O.P. has been expecting from him for some time. He will be coming
after each of our Pensions and Benefits in the coming year, regardless of whether you are an active
employee or a retiree. In his speech he employed the same sort of rhetoric that has polarized the residents of our state.
He blamed the high taxes and loss of wealth found within the state on the hard working, honest public servants of New
Jersey. "Benefits are too rich, and
contributions are too small" are how our pensions were described to the residents of our state by Governor Christie.
The governor proposed the following: Raising the Eligibility Age for Retirement, Curb Cost of Living Adjustments
for Retirees, and Raising Contributions for Employees. He said that then, he would make statutorily required payments
to the pension fund. The state's contribution stands in arrears more than $3,500,000,000.00. The New Jersey
State Lodge of the Fraternal Order of Police has asserted from the beginning that the deliberate and intentional failure to
make contributions required by law, constituted a willful act of misconduct and since 2004, it has had a lawsuit
against the State, its legislature and its State Treasurer for failing to make its payments. The F.O.P. put its money
where its mouth was. When other so-called "police organizations" were making back door deals that marginalized
our position and your pension fund's future, the F.O.P. was fighting for your rights. Those deals failed and left
the pension systems in even worse shape. The time for action is now. Call your legislators and let them know how
you feel about the state cutting your benefits and pensions.
Link to Read the 2011 State of the State Address
Link to Find your Legislator
Suicide Awareness and Prevention Video
New Jersey's Law Enforcement community faces tremendous stress daily. Our members are tasked with responsibilities
found in no other profession. In support of our members, the New Jersey State Lodge partnered with professionals from
many disciplines and the New Jersey Attorney General's Office to develop a video to raise awareness of the unfortunate
toll job stress places on our members. This video will be presented in training to police across the state to demonstrate
to them that they are not alone, that help is available and that we are united as a profession to conqure the causes
of police suicide.
Link to Video
The F.O.P. - Protecting Jobs, Saving Taxpayer Dollars
Every cop knows the value of training. Thanks to the hard
work of the State Lodge and our local lodge leaders, taxpayer dollars will not have been wasted in the layoff of dozens of
cops. Your F.O.P. has been working with legislators to protect the public investment in hundreds of cops statewide to
not only protect their jobs, but to ensure that tax dollars are not wasted. Through legislation, we have started
the process of ensuring the re-hiring of officers who were laid off during their working test periods. These officers
had passed a mandated background investigation, which usually involves hundreds of hours of intense review by experienced
law enforcement professionals. These officers completed an equally intensive and thoroughly comprehensive police academy
training program. In addition, many officers were in their field training programs, but had not yet received permanent
appointment, thus given no rehire privileges under the law. The cost of that investment in hiring and training professional
police officers would have been a waste if not for the continued efforts of the F.O.P. We have partnered with legislators,
State Senator Ron Rice and Assemblyman Albert Coutinho on an F.O.P. Initiative that would protect those jobs and many more
Call your legislators and ask that they support A-3232/S-2274.
Link to View Bills
September 14, 2010
Plan to ReWrite Police Pensions
a staged event, Governor Christie dropped the hammer on thousands of current public employees. The speech witnessed
by our members in Gloucester Township as well as by National Trustee Ron Bakely, turns back the clock nearly 30 years.
The governor's proposal puts a PFRS "Special Retirement" pension for 25 years service at 60% of an
average of the highest three years of compensation with increases of 1% for each year of service to 65%.
law enforcement officers already pay 8.5% of their base salary toward their pensions, one of he highest percentages in the
nation. Governor Christie proposed raising that amount to 10%. In addition, health care premium sharing would
be changed to 30% of the total cost, as opposed to the current 1.5% of base salary.
Legislation to make the changes proposed
by the governor have not yet been introduced, but if or when they are, we will aggressively address our members concerns.
Rest assured, the State Lodge will be working with members of the state legislature to protect the rights of our members,
now and in the future. We will inform you on future events. The best way to keep up to date on what's
going on is to sign up for "Email Blasts". Members wishing to receive Email Blasts from President Brannigan
should Email their requests to the New Jersey State Lodge Office at firstname.lastname@example.org . Please include in your email your name and membership number.
July 14, 2010
Edward R. Brannigan
Order of Police - New Jersey State Chapter
The New Jersey
Fraternal Order of Police respectfully but vigorously disagrees with Senate President Steve Sweeney's recent remarks that
laying off police officers does not constitute a "state of emergency" under the recently enacted 2% statutory cap
on municipal spending.
The loss of police officers has a direct impact on public safety, especially during this
period of heightened concern over terrorism. Just today we were reminded that we must remain vigilant against terrorism.
Police officers in Newark discovered a vehicle carrying what appears to be gasoline containers connected by wires to a device.
The vehicle was parked under a railroad pass that carries Amtrak and NJ Transit trains.
Our nation's terrorism
threat level is Elevated, which means there is a significant risk of terrorist attacks. Laying off police officers during
what is essentially a state of emergency will leave the public more vulnerable to both terrorism and domestic crime and should
be regarded as exempt from the new cap law.
When government can't combat crime and protect its citizens from
terrorism because of a lack of police officers, that obviously constitutes a state of emergency.
We take issue
with Senate President Sweeney's remarks while also appreciative of his successful efforts to prevent an amendment to the
state constitutional that would have strictly capped municipal spending. We are similarly appreciative of his work to
permit the public to override with a simple majority vote a statutorily imposed spending cap.
The NJFOP strongly
opposed any changes to the original 4% cap and its 14 exceptions, and worked with Senate President Sweeney on the compromise
only when it became clear that legislative approval for a newer and stricter cap was inevitable.
Police and Fire Retirement System
"Your State Lodge Representative"
There is No Substitution for Experience...
POLICE OFFICERS AND FIREFIGHTERS TO GOVERNOR CHRISTIE: KEEP YOUR WORD; HANDS OFF
(Trenton, NJ, February 26, 2010) -- The Fraternal Order of Police - New Jersey State
Lodge and the Professional Firefighters Association of New Jersey - AFL-CIO today called on Governor Christie to stay true
to his word and leave unchanged the state's binding arbitration system for municipal police officers and firefighters.
"Our board met personally with then-candidate Christie on September 3, 2009, and he looked into our eyes and
promised he wouldn't touch the binding arbitration system," said Edward R. Brannigan, president of the NJFOP.
"We're asking that now-Governor Christie keep his word and not disrupt the only means of ensuring a fair playing
field between police officers and municipalities."
Binding arbitration is a process for labor and management
to resolve contract disputes. Unlike other labor groups, police officers and firefighters are prohibited by law from
striking. Without the ability to strike, binding arbitration is the only means police officers and firefighters have
to negotiate a fair contract.
"The legislature revised the binding arbitration process in 1996 by imposing
new arbitrator guidelines that help management and giving arbitrators leeway in crafting an agreement," said Dominick
Marino, president of the PFANJ.
Municipalities already benefit from safeguards built into the arbitration process,
including permitting arbitrators to consider the financial status of a municipality before rendering a decision.
"Binding arbitration forces management and labor to reach an agreement," said Marino. "During the last
five years there have been just seventeen firefighter arbitration rulings, which is only about three each year. The
famous phrase 'If it ain't broke, don't fix it" certainly applies here. Binding arbitration works.
The arbitration process compels both sides to settle and with only three binding arbitration rulings a year, the process must
"It was unsettling to read that the governor suggested changes to the binding arbitration
system before a gathering of mayors," continued Brannigan. "Men and women throughout our state put their lives
in jeopardy daily to protect our communities from crime, and they deserve to be treated honestly and respectfully. They
deserve the governor to keep his word."
The Fraternal Order of Police is the world's largest organization
of sworn law enforcement officers, with more than 318,000 members in more than 2,100 lodges. The FOP is the voice of those
who dedicate their lives to protecting and serving our communities. It is committed to improving the working conditions of
law enforcement officers and the safety of those we serve through education, legislation, information, community involvement,
and employee representation.
The Professional Firefighters Association of New Jersey is the state organization
for the International Association of Firefighters, which represents over 292,000 firefighters in the United States and Canada.
# # #
New Jersey Fraternal Order of Police
Edward R. Brannigan
Association of New Jersey
Senate Passes Bills on Pension, Health Care and Retiree Benefits
reported last week in Update 2/18/10, these bills have a drastic impact on current employees. The
State Senate voted 36-0 to pass these bills yesterday. There were 4 abstentions. The State Lodge is working diligently
to protect your hard earned benefits. President Brannigan and State Lodge Legislative Committee Chairman Steven Demofonte
have met with legislative leaders and offered suggestions to save our members benefits while at the same time providing reforms
to save taxpayer money. The State Senate ignored these suggestions. The State Senate chose not to accept
the resposibility of government and instead placed the blame on the hard working employees. Our members have paid 8.5%
of their base pay to their pensions all these years, honorably bargained for health benefits, and in many of these cases
contribute towards their costs. The State Senate has mandated that decades of collective bargaining be tossed aside.
For the State Senate to do this after the state has not make any of its required payments for 11 of the last 15 years
Your legislators in the State Assembly need to hear from our
members immediately to stop this attack on your rights.
Today's editorial in The Star-Ledger points out significant limitations to the Attorney General's new policy permitting police officers use
of so-called stun guns. Only one officer on an entire department is permitted to use a stun gun if the department's
municipality has fewer than 25,000 residents. For municipalities with at least 75,000 residents, only four officers
are permitted to use stun guns.
The Star-Ledger's editorial accurately describes the shortcomings of the new
policy. Although it is a step forward, the new policy is far too small a step.
For several years the New Jersey
Fraternal Order of Police has been the leading advocate for equipping police officers with a non-lethal alternative to firearms.
Your NJFOP will continue to work with the outgoing and incoming administrations to ensure that New Jersey's police officers
have access to the latest and most effective tools necessary to perform their duties while minimizing serious injury to suspects.
Edward R. Brannigan
New Jersey Fraternal Order of Police
Nover 12, 2009
When It Counts!
National Fraternal Order
of Police President Chuck Canterbury credited New Jersey State Lodge President Edward Brannigan and Massachusetts State Lodge
President Arney Larson with the final victory in opposing the invitation of a convicted terrorist leader to sit on a panel
discusssion. Ray Levasseur's "United Freedom Front" was responsible for countless bombings and bank robberies.
One of its members killed New Jersey State Trooper Phillip Lamonaco. The F.O.P. urged all its members to
join with President Brannigan in sending letters of opposition to Chancellor Robert C. Holub University of Massachusetts-Amherst.
President's Brannigan and Larson were "diligent and determined in their demand to keep a convicted terrorist
from subverting the values of our impressionable youth."
July 23, 2009
Chuck Canterbury, national president of the Fraternal
Order of Police, today released the following statement in response to President Obama's comments on the Gates case.
I am very concerned
by President Obama's statement made last night in connection with the Gates matter. President Obama, in his remarks,
stated that he had not been on the scene and did not know what had happened; having said that, he then characterized the arresting
officer as having acted "stupidly".
Police officers, like all Americans, rely on President Obama's leadership
to guide us through an extraordinarily difficult period of change in a variety of areas: to be successful in this effort,
he will need the help and support of all of us. Statements of this nature, made without the facts, do little to narrow
the void of distrust that too often separates the community from the men and women who work to keep it safe.
James Crowley and the men and women of the Cambridge Police Department have our full support as they work their way through this matter.
the short time he has been in office, President has taken a number of steps which have been very well received by the law
enforcement community, such as additional funding for law enforcement grants, rejuvenation of the COPS Program, and a strong
commitment to the Public Safety Officers Benefit Program, to name just a few. The President's Justice Department
and Department of Homeland Security have actively solicited our counsel on public safety issues.
have advised the White House and the Justice Department of my disappointment with the remarks, and look forward to an appropriate
President Canterbury's statement is also available on the Grand Lodge website.
Edward R. Brannigan
Fraternal Order of Police - New Jersey State Lodge
NJ FOP Announces Plans for Next Annual George Bowman Survivors Fund Golf Classic
(Trenton, NJ) -- The Fraternal Order of Police - New Jersey State Lodge (NJFOP)
announces that registration and sponsorship opportunities are open for annual George Bowman Survivors Fund Golf Classic, Monday,
August 3, 2009 at the Burlington Country Club, 170 Burrs Rd., Mount Holly. The George Bowman Survivors Fund is a fund organized
by the NJFOP, intended to compensate the survivors and immediate families of police officers killed in the line of duty.
Named after veteran Pennsauken Patrolman George Bowman, who lost his life on duty in 1995, the Fund recognizes the commitment
of law enforcement personnel to survivors' rights and benefits. The George Bowman Survivors Fund encompasses several events
connecting FOP lodges throughout the state. After 9/11, Fund monies were stretched to the breaking point as they supported
the survivors of Port Authority Police personnel lost that day. The cost is $175 inclusive of lunch, golf and dinner for the
day. The NJFOP is offering sponsorships at several different levels. The deadline for ordering a sponsorship is July
15, 2009. Donations to the George Bowman Survivors Fund are tax-deductible, and all of the proceeds from the golf tournament
will go the Fund. For more information, please visit the Web site at www.njfop.org or contact Steve Szypulski at 609-599-1222.