Board of Trustees Report, November 11, 2021

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Note: This report does not constitute official minutes.
Government Affairs: The trustees voted to support the following pieces of legislation:

A-5468 (Conaway) / S-3344 (Rice) requires financial institutions to release records to adult protective services when there is suspected fraud of vulnerable adult or senior customers and allows adult protective services to release same records to law enforcement agency if necessary. The NJSBA will urge legislators to clarify whether the bill would simply impose a requirement that financial institutions respond to requests from a county adult protective services provider, or whether it places an affirmative duty on financial institutions to assess which clients appear to be vulnerable or senior customers and monitor the transactions of all such clients.
S-3016 (Gopal) authorizes innocent spouse relief under the gross income  tax.
A-3689 (Vainieri Huttle) / S-3140 (Turner) clarifies a juvenile’s right to attorney representation and requires a 12-month judicial review hearing when juvenile is placed out of the home. The NJSBA will seek to work with the bill’s sponsors to ensure the measure does not affect the existing statutory authorities that are in place.         

Financials: Auditors from Withum presented preliminary results of a review of the Association’s financial position. They expect to issue a clean opinion, meaning the Association’s financials, policies and procedures adhere to generally accepted auditing standards. The audit did show an expected reduction in revenue and expenses following the cancellation of all in-person events for the final quarter of the fiscal year because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Association has a roughly $10.2 million annual budget to serve its 16,000 members and offer hundreds of educational programs through the New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education. 
Section and Committee Reports: The trustees approved the criteria for the James R. Lacey Award from the Public Utility Law Section. The section named Stephanie A. Brand as the recipient of the award. The trustees granted the Executive Committee to give final approval of the Cannabis Committee’s proposed comments to regulations issued by the Cannabis Regulatory Commission (CRC). The comments were sent to the CRC.
Trustees: New Jersey State Bar Association President Domenick Carmagnola led a moment of silence to honor the life and legacy of former Trustee Heather Suarez, who died earlier this month.