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News

A Message from Bro. Kevin Lyons, New Jersey State Health Benefit Plan Design Committee:

Last Friday, May 11, 2018 a NJ Court of Appeals invalidated the contract awarded to OptimRx as the Pharmacy Benefit Manager (PBM) for the New Jersey State Health Benefit Plan as well as the SEHBP. This was done as a result of a suit filed by Express Scripts International, the former PBM for the SHBP/SEHBP. The court ruled that the submissions by OptimRx were not acceptable (see article below).

I spoke to the Division today who has assured me that there will be no changes until at least 1/1/2019. That is to say that your prescription plan, if enrolled in the State Health Benefits Plan, will remain status quo with no interruptions in service.

As the matter develops, we will keep you informed through all of our communication outlets.

NJ.com article
http://www.nj.com/politics/index.ssf/2018/05/nj_court_kills_67b_contract_prescription_drug_cont.html#incart_2box_nj-homepage-featured

Appellate Court Decision
https://www.judiciary.state.nj.us/attorneys/assets/opinions/appellate/published/a4751-16.pdf?cacheID=Ob6HBRu

Statement of State PBA President Pat Colligan: Governor’s Conditional Veto of Senate Bill 5

“On behalf of the 33,000 members of the New Jersey State PBA, tens of thousands of retired officers and the future generations of officers to come I want to thank Governor Murphy for approving Senate Bill 5 and for working closely with us on the changes with his Conditional Veto today. I am grateful to Governor Murphy for his very personal commitment to the future of the PFRS.

Nearly 20 years ago PFRS was overfunded and amongst the healthiest pension systems in the United States. But after years of fiscal gimmicks and State ineptitude our pension fund has sunk to levels that we could no longer ignore. Senate Bill 5, along with the Governor’s recommendations, provides the PFRS Board of Trustees with exclusive powers over the investment, policy making and management of the pension system. Today's changes establish a solid future funding of our pensions and an eventual pathway for the return of COLA and the return of a single tier of employees. No longer will PFRS members be forced to suffer from the poor decision making and political expediency that marked the State’s stewardship of our pensions over the years.

With this bill competent professionals and a focused Board of Trustees will protect the fund from abuse and control investment decisions designed only to grow the value of the PFRS.

I want to especially thank Senate President Sweeney for sponsoring this bill and for his passionate leadership in advocating for this concept to protect our pensions. Final passage of this bill will begin a new era in pension management in New Jersey. The growth of PFRS protects the promise of a pension and security for their families made to our members when they became law enforcement officers.

The intent of this bill is clear: we want to fully fund the PFRS and we now finally have the vehicle to make that a reality.”

Senate & Assembly Overwhelmingly Pass PFRS Independence bill

The Senate and Assembly today have passed historic legislation to provide independence, policy making and investment powers to the PFRS Board of Trustees. The bill was a major priority for the State PBA and it's passage culminates several years of research and outreach to once and for all protect the PFRS from abuse and political interference. The bill provides the PFRS Board of Trustees with powers to invest PFRS funds, make policy decisions over pension benefits and provides powers for the board to ensure employer contributions.

The State PBA leadership specifically wishes to thank Senate President Sweeney for his passion and leadership in ensuring passage of this proposal and we are grateful for the efforts of Assembly Speaker Coughlin to further strengthen the protections offered by this bill to PFRS members. The quick movement this session of the bill is in recognition of their support but it signifies the hard work and focus State PBA members placed in urging their representatives to support this bill.

Today's vote came during PBA Day in Trenton. More than 500 PBA members rallied inside the State House to show their support for the bill and for the State PBA's leadership in the State House.

The bill now goes to Governor Murphy for his approval.

David Strumolo Named Next Chief of Police of the Harrison Police Department

As many of you already know, the Harrison PBA has been involved in a dispute with the Mayor and Council over the selection of our next Chief of Police.

Over the last several weeks we asked Harrison residents, our families, friends and fellow law enforcement officers to support us in this debate.

Most recently, we scheduled a rally for Tuesday, February 27, 2018 to continue to raise awareness about this important situation.

We are very happy to report that the Mayor and Council conducted the interviews they referenced at the February 6th Town Council meeting and have since announced that the number one candidate, Lt. David Strumolo will be the next Chief of Police of the Harrison Police Department.

We cannot thank you all enough for your continued interest and support of your local police department and the Harrison PBA Local 22.

We pledge to you, under the leadership of Chief David Strumolo, that we will do the best job we can for the residents of Harrison, and we will not take your support for granted.

The Harrison PBA invites you to join us on Tuesday, February 27, to celebrate with us and meet Chief David Strumolo and the members of the Harrison Police Department.

Cops Exempt from Bill to Reduce Magazine Capacity

Legislation has been introduced this session that will lower the legal capacity for ammunition magazines.  But before rumors about the bill spread we want to make clear to the law enforcement community that active, off duty and retired officers are exempt from the reduced capacity required by the bill.  Section 2 and Section 3 of Senate Bill 102/Assembly Bill 2761 clearly maintains the status quo for all active and retired officers.   Although the bill has no impact on the law enforcement community, we monitor all gun bills closely and we will be meeting with Senate members on Friday.

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NJ Cops Magazine

May 2018 Back Issues
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President's Message

Patrick Colligan, NJSPBA President Patrick Colligan, President Keynote Address

On Jan. 17, NJ State PBA President Pat Colligan gave the keynote address at the graduation of the Cape May County Police Academy 41st Basic Course for Police Officers. Here are some excerpts from that address:

The NJ State PBA publishes New Jersey Cops Magazine and the director was kind enough to allow NJ Cops complete access from the very first day that these recruits arrived in August until their graduation today. It was an honor and a privilege to follow these recruits. The police academy provides extraordinary training for these recruits, and they are well prepared for policing in 2017 and beyond. The training will prepare them for just about anything that they will encounter.

What I would like to tell you first, in the audience, is what the Academy has done for you. I don’t think the officers are going to want us to talk about it, but you deserve it after watching them all leave every Sunday or Monday morning. This academy has taught them how to iron. They can make their beds. They learned how to use a washing machine. Unfortunately, it’s only khakis and whites, but I assume you can let them know how to use colors when you get home. Most importantly, they can shower, shave and do all of their other business and get out of the bathroom in 30 seconds. That’s what the academy has done for you.
Things have changed slightly since I graduated from a similar academy in 1992. Most of these recruits hadn’t been born yet. Yahoo was something you said when you were excited. Gas was $1.05 and you paid the toll on the Parkway with something called a token. So we can agree that times have changed since 1992. The technology has certainly changed, and much of the police training has changed. But the core principles of policing have not.

The members of the very first municipal police department from Boston reported for duty in 1838, as these officers are responding in 2017. What has not changed, and will never change, are the core values of law enforcement: professionalism, compassion, respect, integrity and dedication. Whether you respond on horseback or in a car, whether you respond with a lantern or a flashlight, the call was answered the same way in 1838 as it was in 1992, and will be tomorrow for some of you.

You will respond with professionalism, compassion, respect, integrity and dedication. Bring those values to every call. Treat every victim and even every suspect like you would want your family to be treated. And you will enjoy a very long, healthy and rewarding career. The technology may be vastly different 25 or 30 years from now. The training will change. But those core values will remain exactly the same – I guarantee it.

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