Frequently Asked Questions
Contacting Your Legislators and Other Government Offices
Each member’s bio page lists the address, phone number, and fax (if available) for that member’s district office, as well as a “Contact your Legislator(s)” link you can use to e-mail your legislators.
After clicking the “Contact your Legislator(s)” link, select the legislators you’d like to write to (you can contact any or all of the legislators from a district at once). Then fill out the form and click “Submit e-mail;” this will send your message to the legislators’ district office accounts. For your security, PLEASE DO NOT INCLUDE sensitive personal information such as your birthdate, Social Security Number, or driver’s license number in your message.
The state is apportioned into 40 legislative districts with approximately equal populations, each of which is represented by one senator and two Assembly members. If you’re not sure which district you’re in, you can find out by selecting your city or town in the "District- Filter by Municipality" dropdown on the legislative roster page.
If you are a resident of Newark or Jersey City, please be aware that these cities are each divided between two legislative districts. All wards and voting districts are listed in the same "District- Filter by Municipality" dropdown on the legislative roster page. You can also find your ward and district by putting in your address at the New Jersey Divison of Elections - Polling PLace Search page.
Our municipalities listing only includes the names of incorporated municipalities, not local or post office names. If you don’t see the name of your town, you can look it up in the NJDOT Local Names Index to see which municipality it belongs to (for example, Newark for The Ironbound, Woodbridge Township for Iselin, or Lacey Township for Forked River).
Since messages are most meaningful when they come from the constituents that a member directly represents, or address an issue with which a member is particularly concerned, our website allows messages to up to three legislators (from a single district) at once.
Although the State House Complex is closed to the public during the COVID-19 State of Emergency, members of the public are welcome to testify at committee meetings on bills of interest to them. To sign up to testify or register your position:
- Find the date of the committee meeting on the calendar on the Legislature’s homepage, and click it;
- In the table above the calendar, click the name of the committee;
- Click the "Register to Testify" link, fill out the form, and submit it. A committee aide will contact you. Registration typically closes at 3 PM the business day before a meeting.
Please note that testimony submitted through these methods is a public record and may be posted on the Legislature’s website or provided in response to a public records request.
If you would like to express your position on a bill to a legislator but do not wish to testify, you can write, call or send them a message. Communications from constituents to legislators are not generally considered public records (NJSA 47:1A-1.1).
Please use the Governor’s contact form at https://nj.gov/governor/contact/all/.
You can find a list of Executive Branch departments, agencies, commissions, and authorities, including their websites and contact information, at https://nj.gov/nj/gov/deptserv/.
To contact your U.S. senators, please visit the U.S. Senate’s New Jersey page.
You can find a list of U.S. representatives in the Directory of Representatives; if you’re not sure which district you’re in, you can enter your ZIP code at the House of Representatives’ “Find your Rep” page.
Visit these links to municipal and county governments and local government agencies.
For information about the New Jersey court system (Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Superior Court, and municipal courts), please visit the Judiciary's website. This site provides contact information for court offices, useful information for attorneys, defendants, parties to cases, and jurors, as well as recent case information and opinions of certain courts.
For information about federal courts in New Jersey, please visit the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey (trial) or the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit (appellate).
For information about older cases or access to legal research resources, we suggest you contact your local public library or the New Jersey State Library. Rutgers Law School also maintains useful online resources about New Jersey law at njlaw.rutgers.edu and libguides.law.rutgers.edu/A-Z.
You can find your polling location, voter registration information, and other voting information at the N.J. Department of State’s Voter Information Portal. A list of county election officialsis also available.
Visit the State’s COVID-19 Information Hub for accurate and up-to-date information about the pandemic, New Jersey’s response, and available resources.
You can register to be vaccinated through the NJ Vaccine Scheduling System; you will be contacted for an appointment based on your eligibility and vaccine availability. You can also make an appointment directly with a vaccination site; the Vaccine Appointment Finder allows users to search for available sites and appointments. Veterans may also be eligible for vaccination through the VA.
The Office of Legislative Services provides legal, research, bill drafting, IT, public information, administrative, and other services to the Legislature; vacancies at OLS are posted as they occur under the Employment Opportunities tab. Legislators hire their own aides and district office staff.
Rowan University’s Institute for Public Policy and Citizenship (RIPPAC) maintains a list of offices and campaigns offering internships. Graduate students at Rutgers University can apply for an Eagleton Fellowship, which places fellows in internships at state agencies including the Legislature. Students are also encouraged to contact their institution’s career services office to learn about other potential opportunities.
Staying Informed About Legislative Activities
On the Legislature’s homepage, you can see a calendar showing all scheduled legislative business. When you click on a date, the table to the right of the calendar will show a list of all proceedings for that day. Click on any session or meeting to see the bills or questions that are scheduled for debate and/or votes. You can find the same information in PDF format in the Legislative Calendar.
Yes; please click the Live Proceedings link on our homepage to see what proceedings are available. Users can watch video broadcasts of Senate and Assembly sessions held in the State House. Live audio is available for most committee meetings and hearings held in the State House. During the COVID-19 emergency, some proceedings are being conducted remotely by conference call or video conference; these are also available for live listening or viewing.
Video and audio recordings of past proceedings (going back to 2000 in some cases) are available at the Archived Proceedings link.
Yes, you can sign up to get updates on bills of your choice with our Bill Subscription Service. You will receive e-mails when action is taken on a bill or when it is scheduled for a vote. For more information or to sign up, please visit the Bill Subscription Service page.
You can find an overview of the Legislature, legislative powers, and the state budget process on our website. Article IV of the New Jersey Constitution addresses the role and powers of the Legislature, while Article V, Section 1, Paragraphs 14 and 15 lay out the Governor’s powers concerning bills passed by the Legislature. The State House Tour Office has an overview of the legislative process.
The Senate and General Assembly have standing reference committees with different areas of responsibility. After introduction, new bills are typically referred to the appropriate committee, which can debate and amend it before reporting it to the whole house. The Legislature’s website has pages for Senate committees and Assembly committees with lists of their members and links to their schedules.
The Legislature can also create joint committees or legislative commissions to handle joint business, study complex issues, and make recommendations to the Legislature; members may include legislators, other government officials, subject matter experts, and members of the public.
Visitors are welcome to tour New Jersey's historic State House; you can learn more at the State House Tour Office website. Please note that:
- reservations for tours are required;
- visitors must pass through security and undergo a temperature check upon entry;
- all visitors must comply with all posted signage regarding face coverings and social distancing.
For more details, please see the Tour Office visitor FAQs.
Visitors are required to comply with all posted signage regarding face coverings and social distancing within the State House Complex. All employees and visitors will have their temperature scanned on entry, and no one with a temperature of 100.4 degrees F or greater will be admitted. Please do not visit the State House if you are experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms.
A number of steps have been taken to provide a safe environment for employees and State House visitors, including frequent cleaning of the Complex, cleaning and optimization of ventilation systems, and installation of hand sanitizer dispensers. Access to certain spaces is limited to employees, as indicated by signs in the Complex.
Visitors should also note that Café NJ is currently closed, and hot food and beverages are not available for purchase in the State House Complex; snacks and cold drinks are available from vending machines, and there are restaurants and coffee shops nearby in downtown Trenton.
You can learn more about visiting the State House, including COVID-19 precautions, on the State House Tour Office webpage.
The Public Use Program allows members of the public and organizations to set up displays or hold events in the Capitol Complex; please see the the Public Use Program page for more details.
Finding Bills and Laws
The Bill Search form on our homepage lets users look up a specific bill or search by certain criteria.
To see all bills or resolutions of a particular type, just enter the abbreviation (“S,” “A,” “SJR,” etc.) without a number in the Bill Number field. To see all bills and resolutions for a session, select that session and click “Submit” while leaving the bill number field blank.
If you know the bill or resolution number, put it in the bill number field (for example, “S196” for Senate Bill 196, “A642” for Assembly Bill 642, “SCR1” for Senate Concurrent Resolution 1, etc.) and click Submit.”
To see all bills on a particular topic, select from the “Subject” drop-down, select the topic that interest you, and click “Submit.”
To see all the bills sponsored by a legislator, select that member’s name from the “Sponsor” drop-down.
Users can also search for bills by keyword. Please note that this will only search the bill synopsis (the brief description of the bill), not the full text of the bill.
Finally, users can use the “Last Date of Action” drop-down to find all bills for which action was last taken on a particular date, or “Governor’s Action” to see all bills that were approved or vetoed.
By default, the form will search bills for the current session, but users can look for bills from an earlier session (going back to the 1996-1997 session) by selecting it from the “Legislative Session” drop-down (please do this first, as it will erase other information on the form).
The final text of an enacted law is called the Pamphlet Law or Chapter Law, and it becomes available on the Legislature’s website as soon as legislative staff produce it. If you know the bill number, you can look it up using the Bill Search form on our homepage. If you know the chapter law number (for example, “P.L. 2021, c. 1”), you can look it up under the appropriate year on the Chapter Laws page.
Generally speaking, the longer and more complex a bill is, the longer it will take to produce the pamphlet law. Before the pamphlet law becomes available, you can consult the “advance law,” which also contains the final text of the law, but in a different format. Advance laws are quicker to produce than pamphlet laws, but they must be read more carefully, since they still show language that was deleted or amended during passage, indicated by special markup.
The introduced version of a bill is the original text of the bill; it contains a sponsor statement describing the contents of the bill. Each time a bill is amended, it receives a reprint reflecting the modifications. Statements from the house or committee describing the amendments are contained in separate documents. In some cases, a house or committee will replace a bill with completely new language, rather than amending it; this is a substitute.
After a bill is passed and approved by the Governor, the advance law is produced; this contains the final text of the bill, but still shows deleted or amended language and modifications from the legislative process. The pamphlet law (or chapter law) is the final, official text of the law, containing only the final, effective language.
Fiscal notes and fiscal estimates are statements of a bill’s anticipated fiscal impact on the state or local governments.
Governor’s statements and vetoes are statements of the Governor’s rationale for signing or vetoing a bill.
A technical review is a bill from a previous session that was pre-filed for a new session, and received minor, technical changes to keep it up to date and in the proper form.
Search for the bill you’re interested in using the Bill Search form on our homepage, then click on the bill number in the results. You’ll see a page containing information about the bill, including its sponsors, history, text, and current status. You can also visit any legislator’s page and click the “List of Bills Sponsored by…” link to see a list of that member’s bills.
You can look up a bill using the Bill Search form on our homepage; after clicking on the bill number on the Results page, you will see a list of actions taken on the bill on different dates. This allows you to see where the bill is in the legislative process. The State House Tour Office has an overview of the typical procedure for introducing and passing bills.
Once a bill has been referred to a committee, reported from a committee, or received in a house of the Legislature, it may be considered at the presiding officer’s discretion. You can sign up for updates using our Bill Subscription Service to receive notifications when bills are scheduled for votes or discussion.
If both houses pass a bill but the Governor does not sign or veto it within 45 days, then the bill automatically becomes law the next time that the originating house meets (different rules apply in the last 45 days of the Legislative Session; see N.J. Constitution, Article V, Section 1, Paragraphs 14 and 15.
Bills that have not passed the Legislature expire at the end of the session. If the bill sponsor still wishes to pursue a bill, then that member must reintroduce the bill in the new session, at which point it receives a new bill number and starts over from the beginning of the process.
If you have questions on a bill, you can contact the Legislative Information and Bill Room at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 609-847-3905 or 800-792-8630 (toll-free). For Hearing Impaired users, dial 711 for NJ Relay.
Only your own attorney can give you legal advice and interpret the law as it applies to your situation. Although the Legislature has the power to pass laws by amending the New Jersey Statutes and proposing constitutional amendments to voters, there are many other sources of law in New Jersey. An attorney is best suited to the task of understanding how these laws interact with each other and which ones apply in a particular jurisdiction.
The following list of legal resources is provided for your information and convenience; it is not exhaustive, the Legislature cannot take responsibility for the content of external sites, and you should observe the disclaimers on each resource and consult an attorney as necessary.
- New Jersey Constitution: As the fundamental law of New Jersey, the Constitution outlines the rights of citizens and the structure and function of state government.
- New Jersey Statutes: All of the general and permanent laws of New Jersey, arranged by subject. Laws passed by the Legislature are codified here. Disclaimer: This database is not annotated, and may contain laws that are inoperable due to unmet conditions, expiration, court rulings, or other circumstances. Users should diligently read applicable statute source law and case law.
- N.J. Register/N.J. Administrative Code: In some cases, the Legislature delegates its lawmaking authority to bodies in the Executive Branch; these bodies can then make administrative rules (which have the force of law) to implement the Legislature’s intent. Rules are published in the New Jersey Register when they are proposed, and again when they are adopted; they are then codified by subject in the New Jersey Administrative Code. Free public access to the NJR and NJAC is provided by Lexis.
- Executive Orders: The Governor, as the head of the Executive Branch, can use executive orders to direct the actions of state departments and agencies or to declare an emergency.
- Court Opinions: In interpreting the law, courts rely not only on the Constitution and Statutes, but on precedents established through court rulings in earlier cases. Court rulings may modify or even block the enforcement of statutes. N.J. Supreme Court decisions are published in New Jersey Reports, and selected appellate and trial court decisions are published in New Jersey Superior Court Reports. Recent Supreme and Appellate decisions are available from the Judiciary; older materials are available from the New Jersey State Library and Rutgers Law School.
The Legislature makes the New Jersey Statutes (the general and permanent laws of New Jersey, arranged by topic) available on its website. You can browse the Statutes using the navigation bar in the left column: click on a title to see a list of sections, then click on a section to see the text.
You can also perform a variety of keyword searches by selecting a search type from the upper-left-hand drop-down menu. A simple search will return all sections containing your search terms in any order (the search string “county clerk,” without quotes, will return all sections containing “county” and “clerk”). To search for exact matches for a phrase, enclose it in quotes (“county clerk” in quotes will bring up all sections containing the phrase “county clerk”). You can see a list of search results ranked by relevance, or use the navigation bar to browse search hits in specific sections.
You can use the Advanced Search option to find results that include or exclude specific words or phrases, or perform proximity searches. You can also perform a Boolean search to run a more precise search; the Boolean Search page has a list of operators and instructions.
If you have a citation to a specific statute, you can perform a Simple Search in quotes (e.g. “2A:62A-1” in quotes) to find that statute. If there are multiple references to that section in the Statutes, you may receive more than one result.
Disclaimer: This database is not annotated, and may contain laws that are inoperable due to unmet conditions, expiration, court rulings, or other circumstances. Users should diligently read applicable statute source law and case law.
The Legislature’s website has bills and chapter laws going back to the 1996-1997 section. Earlier chapter laws are available from the New Jersey State Library, Rutgers Law School, and from the commercial database HeinOnline (available at the State Library and other libraries). The New Jersey State Library also has a collection of legislative history checklists, which include bill texts, statements, and other supporting documents for many bills that became law. You can search here using the year and chapter number of the pamphlet law.
Votes from 2004 to the present are available via the Bill Search form on our homepage. After clicking on the bill number on the results page, you will see a list of actions taken on the bill on different dates, including vote tallies; click “Roll Call” to see a list of individual legislators’ votes. Floor and committee votes going back to 1988 are available as comma-separated text files from our Downloads Page.
The Senate Journal and the Minutes of the General Assembly are the official proceedings of the Legislature, and record all actions, votes, and motions taken. The N.J. State Library has digitized many of them and made them available online. However, they do not typically include verbatim transcripts of debate. The Legislature’s website has video or audio recordings of most sessions held in the Senate or Assembly chambers since 2000; you can find these under the Archived Proceedings.
Only selected committee meetings are transcribed, typically at the request of the chair. Transcripts are available on the Legislature’s website. Most committee meetings held in the State House Complex are recorded and are available for viewing under the Archived Proceedings on our homepage.
Legislative Calendar: A listing of all planned legislative meetings, and the bills scheduled for discussion or votes.
Legislative Digest: A report for a particular date, showing actions taken on bills by the Legislature and the Governor and other legislative actions.
Bills and Resolutions: Users can find the full text and history of bills from 1996 to the present using the Bill Search form on our homepage.
Public Information: The Office of Public Information publishes useful information about the work and members of the Legislature, including rosters of members, guides to the legislative process, visitor information, and educational materials.
Budget Information: During the annual budget process, links to the Governor’s proposed budget and budget bills are available on the Legislature’s homepage, along with fiscal analysis of the Governor’s budget and testimony by Executive Branch department heads. Past budget information and snapshots of New Jersey tax revenue by the Legislative Budget and Finance Office are available on the Budget page.
Audit Reports: Reports produced by the Office of the State Auditor, an independent review body, examining the performance and fiscal practices of state agencies and entities receiving state funding.
Public Hearing Transcripts: Selected public hearings and committee meetings are transcribed, typically at the request of the committee chair. Transcripts from 1996 to the present are available on the Legislature’s website, including written testimony and materials submitted by those testifying.
Legislative Reports: Legislative bodies and task forces occasionally produce reports on the results of studies or investigations; these are available here.
Glossary: A helpful guide to legislative terms, available here.
Yes. If you’d like the text of a particular bill, you can find and download it using the Bill Search function. You can also download batches of bills and various other legal and legislative documents from our Downloads Page.
“Bills” includes all bill documents for each session.
Under “Statutes,” you can download the full text of the New Jersey Statutes, the Legislative Counsel’s Table of Contents, and the New Jersey Constitution in text or Folio Infobase format. Disclaimer: The downloadable Statutes are not annotated, and may contain laws that are inoperable due to unmet conditions, expiration, court rulings, or other circumstances. Users should diligently read applicable statute source law and case law. Users are responsible for staying informed about legislation that may modify the statutes they are interested in.
“Votes” includes comma-delimited files containing each member’s floor and committee votes on each bill since 1988.
“Bill Tracking Information” consists of Microsoft Access databases for each session since 1998-1999, containing bill information and procedural history, bill sponsors, agenda information for bills and nominations, biographical and committee membership information for legislators, and metadata for bill documents, as well as lists of acronyms and bill subjects used in the database.
These files are updated every weekday.
Website Content and Technical Issues
Please e-mail email@example.com with a detailed description of the problem, including your operating system and browser versions, any error messages received, and screenshots if applicable.
Streams of legislative proceedings are compatible with all modern browsers and devices. Since a wide array of device settings, software issues, and connection problems can cause disruptions, our IT staff cannot diagnose all problems. The following steps may help:
- Make sure that your operating system and browser are up to date;
- If you are using a work computer, check with your IT personnel to see if your network, firewall, or other device settings are interfering.
If you believe that there is a technical problem on our end, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with a detailed description of the problem, including your operating system and browser versions, any error messages received, and screenshots if applicable.
Some pages on our website depend on contextual information from the site to function correctly, and they will not work if you visit the URL directly (e.g. from a link sent in an e-mail).
To register for a hearing, please click on the appropriate date on the calendar on our homepage, click on the committee name in the table above the calendar, and then click the “Registration Form” link.
To send an e-mail to a legislator with our web form, please visit the legislator’s page and click the “Contact your Legislator(s)” link. You can also visit and select a municipality to send a message to legislators in the appropriate district.
Schedules and agendas are updated immediately, as are records of votes, motions, and other legislative actions. Bill texts, pamphlet laws, and statute allocations are updated as soon as they are produced by staff. Budget documents, audit reports, public hearing transcripts, legislative reports, and other publications are updated as soon as they are approved by managers in the appropriate unit. Biographical information on legislators and appointments to committees and commissions are updated as directed by the presiding officers of each house. Other information is updated as necessary.
The Statutes Database does not support persistent URLs for specific sections of the Statutes.
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