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    Chapter 17B: Establishment of department; "the department" defined

      Section: 52:17B-160: Findings, declarations

           2. The Legislature finds and declares:

Crime and the fear of crime continue to grip far too many New Jersey residents. The volume of crimes committed in this State has risen by almost 10 percent over the past 10 years, according to the State Police, with violent crime comprising an ever-greater proportion of the total. A recent Statewide survey revealed that one of every seven New Jersey residents had been a crime victim within the past six months.

While crime has mushroomed, its face and scope have changed dramatically. Rural and suburban communities, formerly considered safe havens, are now plagued by crimes once thought confined to urban areas. In fact, offenses such as carjackings are as likely to occur in suburban shopping malls as in big cities.

As criminals have widened their base of operations, local efforts to cope with crime have been stretched dangerously thin by economic adversity. Cash-strapped communities across the State have laid off or restrained the hiring of police officers--the first line of defense against criminals. These communities also have been required to curtail expenditures for the equipment--cars, radios and body armor--necessary for effective police operations.

It is clearly time for action to deal with this epidemic of crime in a forceful, yet enlightened, manner. The Safe and Secure Communities Program, established by this act, will enable the police and the community to create a partnership designed to identify and develop strategies to impact crime and improve the quality of life by (1) combining State, federal and local resources to rapidly place 2,000 additional police officers in communities throughout the State, (2) providing hard-pressed municipalities with funding to purchase the equipment vital to effective police operations, (3) imposing an additional penalty on lawbreakers to establish a continuing source of funding to pay for these officers and equipment, (4) deploying the additional officers and equipment in a focused, community-oriented manner that will assure their maximum impact in combatting crime, and (5) initiating such other programs as will meet the particular needs of municipalities.


This section added to the Rutgers Database: 2012-09-26 13:37:55.

Older versions of 52:17B-160 (if available):

Court decisions that cite this statute: CLICK HERE.