New Jersey Governor Claims Authority to Seize Control of all Public and Private Property for Snow Emergency; Orders all Citizens They Have “Duty” to Comply
Thursday, 02 January 2014 17:53
January 2, 2014 — (TRN http://www.TurnerRadioNetwork.com ) — TRENTON, NJ- In anticipation of the severe winter storm expected to arrive in New Jersey beginning Thursday evening, Governor Chris Christie declared a State of Emergency, authorizing the State Director of Emergency Management to activate and coordinate the preparation, response and recovery efforts for the storm with all county and municipal emergency operations and governmental agencies.Governor Christie also authorized the closing of state offices on Friday, January 3rd for all non-essential employees. “The impending weather conditions over the next several days will produce a variety of dangerous travel conditions throughout the state,” said Governor Christie. “I’ve authorized state officials to take all necessary action in advance of the storm, and my Administration will continue monitoring conditions throughout the remainder of the storm. I encourage all New Jerseyans to stay off the roads if possible so that our first responders and public safety officials can safely respond to any emergency situations.”
Starting Thursday evening, the storm is expected to bring high winds, heavy snow, mixed precipitation, storm surges and sub-zero temperatures throughout the state. A potential mixture of hazardous travel conditions, fallen trees and power outages and coastal, stream and river flooding are anticipated.
EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 146
WHEREAS, beginning on January 2, 2014 the State of New Jersey is expected to experience a severe winter storm with high winds, heavy snow, mixed precipitation, dangerous storm surges, and sub-zero temperatures throughout the State; and
WHEREAS, this severe winter storm is predicted to produce hazardous travel conditions, cause fallen trees and power outages, and produce potential coastal, stream, and river flooding throughout the State; and
WHEREAS, this severe winter storm is expected to result in dangerous conditions across New Jersey for several days, impeding transportation and the normal operation of public and private entities; and
WHEREAS, the impending weather conditions may make it difficult or impossible for citizens to obtain the necessities of life, as well as essential services such as police, fire, and first aid; and
WHEREAS, it is necessary to take action in advance of the storm to lessen the threat to lives and property in this State; and
WHEREAS, the impending weather conditions constitute an imminent hazard, which threatens and presently endangers the health, safety, and resources of the residents of one or more municipalities and counties of this State; and
WHEREAS, this situation may become too large in scope to be handled by the normal county and municipal operating services in some parts of this State, and this situation may spread to other parts of the State; and
WHEREAS, the Constitution and statutes of the State of New Jersey, particularly the provisions of N.J.S.A. App. A:9-33, et seq., N.J.S.A. 38A:3-6.1, and N.J.S.A. 38A:2-4, and all amendments and supplements thereto, confer upon the Governor of the State of New Jersey certain emergency powers;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, CHRIS CHRISTIE, Governor of the State of New Jersey, in order to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the people of the State of New Jersey, DO DECLARE and PROCLAIM that a State of Emergency exists in the State of New Jersey and I hereby ORDER and DIRECT the following:
1. I authorize and empower the State Director of Emergency Management, who is the Superintendent of State Police, to activate those elements of the State Emergency Operations Plan that he deems necessary to further safeguard the public security, health, and welfare, to direct the activation of county and municipal emergency operations plans as necessary, and to coordinate the preparation, response, and recovery efforts for this emergency with all governmental agencies, volunteer organizations, and the private sector.
2. I authorize and empower the State Director of Emergency Management, in accordance with N.J.S.A. App. A:9-33, et seq., as supplemented and amended, through the police agencies under his control, to determine the control and direction of the flow of vehicular traffic on any State or interstate highway, municipal or county road, and any access road, including the right to detour, reroute, or divert any or all traffic and to prevent ingress or egress from any area that, in the State Director’s discretion, is deemed necessary for the protection of the health, safety, and welfare of the public, and to remove parked or abandoned vehicles from such roadways as conditions warrant.
3. I authorize and empower the Attorney General, pursuant to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 39:4-213, acting through the Superintendent of State Police, to determine the control and direction of the flow of vehicular traffic on any State or interstate highway, municipal or county road, and any access road, including the right to detour, reroute, or divert any or all traffic, and to prevent ingress or egress and further authorize all law enforcement officers to enforce any such order of the Superintendent of State Police within their respective municipalities.
4. I authorize and empower the State Director of Emergency Management to order the evacuation of all persons, except for those emergency and governmental personnel whose presence the State Director deems necessary, from any area where their continued presence could present a danger to their health, safety, or welfare because of the conditions created by this emergency.
5. I authorize and empower the State Director of Emergency Management to utilize all facilities owned, rented, operated, and maintained by the State of New Jersey to house and shelter persons who may need to be evacuated from a residence, dwelling, building, structure, or vehicle during the course of this emergency.
6. I authorize and empower the executive head of any agency or instrumentality of the State government with authority to promulgate rules to waive, suspend, or modify any existing rule, the enforcement of which would be detrimental to the public welfare during this emergency, notwithstanding the provisions of the Administrative Procedure Act or any law to the contrary for the duration of this Executive Order, subject to my prior approval and in consultation with the State Director of Emergency Management. Any such waiver, modification, or suspension shall be promulgated in accordance with N.J.S.A. App. A:9-45.
7. I authorize and empower the Adjutant General, in accordance with N.J.S.A. 38A:2-4 and N.J.S.A. 38A:3-6.1, to order to active duty such members of the New Jersey National Guard who, in the Adjutant General’s judgment, are necessary to provide aid to those localities where there is a threat or danger to the public health, safety, and welfare and to authorize the employment of any supporting vehicles, equipment, communications, or supplies as may be necessary to support the members so ordered.
8. In accordance with N.J.S.A. App. A:9-34 and -51, I reserve the right to utilize and employ all available resources of the State government and of each and every political subdivision of the State, whether of persons, properties, or instrumentalities, and to commandeer and utilize any personal services and any privately owned property necessary to protect against this emergency.
9. In accordance with N.J.S.A. App. A:9-40, no municipality, county, or any other agency or political subdivision of this State shall enact or enforce any order, rule, regulation, ordinance, or resolution, which will or might in any way conflict with any of the provisions of this Order, or which will in any way interfere with or impede the achievement of the purposes of this Order.
10. It shall be the duty of every person or entity in this State or doing business in this State and of the members of the governing body and every official, employee, or agent of every political subdivision in this State and of each member of all other governmental bodies, agencies, and authorities in this State of any nature whatsoever, to cooperate fully with the State Director of Emergency Management in all matters concerning this state of emergency.
11. In accordance with N.J.S.A. App. A:9-34, N.J.S.A. App. A:9-40.6, and N.J.S.A. 40A:14-156.4, no municipality or public or semi-public agency shall send public works, fire, police, emergency medical, or other personnel or equipment into any non-contiguous disaster-stricken municipality within this State, nor to any disaster-stricken municipality outside this State, unless and until such aid has been directed by the county emergency management coordinator or his deputies in consultation with the State Director of Emergency Management.
12. This Order shall take effect immediately and shall remain in effect until such time as it is determined by me that an emergency no longer exists.
GIVEN, under my hand and seal this 2 nd day of January, Two Thousand and Fourteen, and of the Independence of the United States, the Two Hundred and Thirty-Eighth.[seal]/s/ Chris Christie
/s/ Charles B. McKenna
Chief Counsel to the Governor
(Read the EXECUTIVE ORDER directly from state government web site HERE )
Source: Turner Radio Network (emphasis in original)