February 6, 2019
MURPHY SIGNS LAW FOR STATE TO TAKE OVER INVESTIGATIONS OF FATAL POLICE SHOOTINGS
Gov. Phil Murphy on Wednesday signed legislation taking fatal police shooting inquiries in New Jersey out of the hands of county prosecutors and turning them over to state investigators. The new law was a victory for police reform advocates who had lobbied for years to change how New Jersey handled deadly police shooting probes, which are among the most fraught cases prosecutors handle.
MURPHY VETOES HOMELESS AID
Gov. Phil Murphy on Thursday vetoed legislation that would have created a more generous housing assistance program for thousands of chronically ill and disabled people in New Jersey, saying the measure would have all but written a blank check the state cannot afford. The bill (S1965) provided up to a maximum of 18 months of “emergency assistance” payments for low-income people, including those deemed unable to work because they are chronically ill and disabled.
GROUPS PREPARE TO FIGHT TRUMP DRUG PRICING PROPOSAL
Groups involved with fighting HIV, epilepsy, and serious mental illness are prepared to battle the Trump administration on a plan to change Medicare Part D, the portion of the program that covers prescription drugs. Under the administration’s plan insurance companies would be able to require that doctors try certain less expensive drugs first, or require doctors to check with an insurance company before they issue a prescription.
INVESTIGATION OF GENERIC DRUG MANUFACTURERS EXPANDS
Executives at more than a dozen generic-drug companies had a form of shorthand to describe how they conducted business, insider lingo worked out over steak dinners, cocktail receptions and rounds of golf. Officials from multiple states say these practices were central to illegal price-fixing schemes of massive proportion. The alleged victims were American health-care consumers and taxpayers.
NEW JERSEY’S GROWING CAREGIVING COMMUNITY NEED MORE AWARENESS AND BETTER ACCESS TO SERVICES
Many caregivers — some studies suggest as many as 81 percent — don’t think about what they do as caregiving, so they aren’t getting the services they need because they don’t even realize they are available. Raising awareness while breaking down barriers is one of the goals of the New Jersey Caregiver Task Force, which was signed into law on Dec. 28 after a six-year long planning and discussion process. The Task Force will consist of 11 members from public and private sectors. Three public members will be appointed by Gov. Phil Murphy, including one person who is a caregiver for a person with a disability, one who is caregiver for a person with mental illness, and one who is a caregiver for an elderly person.