NEWARK — The mayor of New Jersey’s biggest city lobbied for the state legislature to pass a bill that would require civilian complaint review boards in every municipality in the Garden State.
The Brick City has had a permanent CCRB since 2016 and Mayor Ras Baraka wants to see it implemented in the rest of the state.
“As the injustice, inequality and oppression of the killing and brutality of men and women of darker hue by those who were sworn to uphold and protect is visible and evident on social media and our news stations, the call for justice and accountability has never been louder,” Baraka said. “The paradox that these efforts to hold officers who break their oaths to protect and serve our residents accountable remains stalled in Congress, courtrooms, and our legislature is unfathomable. We must turn this proposed legislation into law immediately, to make our communities whole otherwise these abuses will continue, and so will needless tragedies and chronic community trauma.”
Baraka is drumming up support for the A4656/S2963 ‘Civilian Complaint Review Board’ bill currently in both chambers of the legislature. If enacted, it would authorize the creation of Civilian Complaint Review Boards (CCRBs) to review police operations and conduct, as well as appropriate $800,000 to this purpose.
The legislation needs 41 votes in the State Assembly and 21 in the State Senate for passage. It has been in both chambers since last September. Baraka and those in support want it passed by the end of June.
The bill would allow CCRBs to have subpoena power, concurrent investigatory powers, community representation and disciplinary power.