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State of New Jersey, Civil Service Commission
Governor Chris Christie • Lt.Governor Kim Guadagno
 
 

SUBCHAPTER 2. MAJOR DISCIPLINE


4A:2-2.1 Employees covered
(a) This subchapter applies only to permanent employees in the career service or a person serving a working test period.

(b) Appointing authorities may establish major discipline procedures for other employees.

(c) When the State of New Jersey and the majority representative have agreed pursuant to the New Jersey Employer-Employee Relations Act, N.J.S.A. 34:13A-5.3, to a procedure for appointing authority review before a disciplinary action is taken against a permanent employee in the career service or an employee serving a working test period, such procedure shall be the exclusive procedure for review before the appointing authority.

(d) When the State of New Jersey and the majority representative have agreed pursuant to the New Jersey Employer-Employee Relations Act, N.J.S.A. 34:13A-5.3, to a disciplinary review procedure that provides for binding arbitration of disputes involving a disciplinary action which would be otherwise appealable to the Board under N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.8, of a permanent employee in the career service or a person serving a working test period, such procedure shall be the exclusive procedure for any appeal of such disciplinary action.

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(a) Major discipline shall include:

1. Removal;

2. Disciplinary demotion;

3. Suspension or fine for more than five working days at any one time;

(b) See N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.9 for minor disciplinary matters that are subject to a hearing, and N.J.A.C. 4A:2-3 for all other minor disciplinary matters.

(c) The length of a suspension in a Final Notice of Disciplinary Action, a Board decision or a settlement, when expressed in "days," shall mean working days, unless otherwise stated.

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(a) An employee may be subject to discipline for:

1. Incompetency, inefficiency or failure to perform duties;

2. Insubordination;

3. Inability to perform duties;

4. Chronic or excessive absenteeism or lateness;

5. Conviction of a crime;

6. Conduct unbecoming a public employee;

7. Neglect of duty;

8. Misuse of public property, including motor vehicles;

9. Discrimination that affects equal employment opportunity (as defined in N.J.A.C. 4A:7-1.1), including sexual harassment;

10. Violation of Federal regulations concerning drug and alcohol use by and testing of employees who perform functions related to the operation of commercial motor vehicles, and State and local policies issued thereunder;

11. Violation of New Jersey residency requirements as set forth in P.L. 2011, c. 70; and

12.  Other sufficient cause.

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(a) No suspension or fine shall exceed six months except for suspensions pending criminal complaint or indictment. See N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.7.

(b) In local service, the appointing authority may provide that a suspension be with or without pay. In State service, suspensions shall be without pay unless directly authorized to be with pay by the department head. In both local and State service, a suspension on the record may be imposed in accordance with (e) below.

(c) An appointing authority may only impose a fine as follows:

1. As a form of restitution;

2. In lieu of a suspension, when the appointing authority establishes that a suspension of the employee would be detrimental to the public health, safety or welfare; or

3. Where an employee has agreed to a fine as a disciplinary option.

(d) An employee may pay a fine of more than five days salary in a lump sum or through installments. Unless otherwise agreed to by the employee, an installment may not be more than five percent of the gross salary per pay for a fine under $500.00; 10 percent of gross salary per pay period for a fine between $500.00 and $1,000; or 15 percent of gross salary per pay period for a fine over $1,000.

(e) An appointing authority may impose a suspension on the record when the appointing authority and the employee, or, where the employee is covered by a collective negotiations agreement, the employee's majority representative, agree in writing that, for purposes of progressive discipline, the employee will receive a suspension on the record and that it will have the same force and effect for purposes of future disciplinary actions as a suspension actually served by the employee.

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(a) An employee must be served with a Preliminary Notice of Disciplinary Action setting forth the charges and statement of facts supporting the charges (specifications), and afforded the opportunity for a hearing prior to imposition of major discipline, except:

1. An employee may be suspended immediately and prior to a hearing where it is determined that the employee is unfit for duty or is a hazard to any person if permitted to remain on the job, or that an immediate suspension is necessary to maintain safety, health, order or effective direction of public services. An employee who has been appointed on or after September 1, 2011, who does not have a principal residence in New Jersey and who has not received a residency exemption in accordance with P.L. 2011, c. 70, within one year of appointment, is defined by that statute as illegally holding and unqualified for employment, and therefore subject to immediate suspension as unfit for duty.  However, a Preliminary Notice of Disciplinary Action with opportunity for a hearing must be served in person or by certified mail within five days following the immediate suspension.

2. An employee may be suspended immediately when the employee is formally charged with a crime of the first, second or third degree, or a crime of the fourth degree on the job or directly related to the job. See N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.7.

(b) Where suspension is immediate under (a)1 and 2 above, and is without pay, the employee must first be apprised either orally or in writing, of why an immediate suspension is sought, the charges and general evidence in support of the charges and provided with sufficient opportunity to review the charges and the evidence in order to respond to the charges before a representative of the appointing authority. The response may be oral or in writing, at the discretion of the appointing authority.

(c) The employee may request a departmental hearing within five days of receipt of the Preliminary Notice. If no request is made within this time or such additional time as agreed to by the appointing authority or as provided in a negotiated agreement, the departmental hearing may be considered to have been waived and the appointing authority may issue a Final Notice of Disciplinary Action.

(d) A departmental hearing, if requested, shall be held within 30 days of the Preliminary Notice of Disciplinary Action unless waived by the employee or a later date as agreed to by the parties.  See N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.13 for hearings regarding removal appeals by certain law enforcement officers and firefighters.

(e) Appeals concerning violations of this section may be presented to the Civil Service Commission through a petition for interim relief. See N.J.A.C. 4A:2-1.2.

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(a) The hearing shall be held before the appointing authority or its designated representative.

(b) The employee may be represented by an attorney or authorized union representative.

(c) The parties shall have the opportunity to review the evidence supporting the charges and present and examine witnesses. The employee shall not be required to testify, but an employee who does testify will be subject to cross-examination.

(d) Within 20 days of the hearing, or such additional time as agreed to by the parties, the appointing authority shall make a decision on the charges and furnish the employee either by personal service or certified mail with a Final Notice of Disciplinary Action.  See N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.13 for the issuance of a Final Notice in removal appeals by certain law enforcement officers and firefighters.

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(a) When an appointing authority suspends an employee based on a pending criminal complaint or indictment, the employee must be served with a Preliminary Notice of Disciplinary Action. The notice should include a statement that N.J.S.A. 2C:51-2 may apply to the employee, and that the employee may choose to consult with an attorney concerning the provisions of that statute.

1. The employee may request a departmental hearing within five days of receipt of the Notice. If no request is made within this time, or such additional time as agreed to by the appointing authority or as provided in a negotiated agreement, the appointing authority may then issue a Final Notice of Disciplinary Action under (a)3 below. A hearing shall be limited to the issue of whether the public interest would best be served by suspending the employee until disposition of the criminal complaint or indictment. The standard for determining that issue shall be whether the employee is unfit for duty or is a hazard to any person if permitted to remain on the job, or that an immediate suspension is necessary to maintain safety, health, order or effective direction of public services.

2. The appointing authority may impose an indefinite suspension to extend beyond six months where an employee is subject to criminal charges as set forth in N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.5(a)2, but not beyond the disposition of the criminal complaint or indictment.

i. Where an employee who has been indefinitely suspended enters Pre-Trial Intervention (PTI) or has received a conditional discharge, the criminal complaint or indictment shall not be deemed disposed of until completion of PTI or until dismissal of the charges due to the employee's satisfaction of the conditions in a conditional discharge, as the case may be.

ii. An appointing authority may continue an indefinite suspension until completion of PTI or until satisfaction of the conditions imposed in a conditional discharge. If an appointing authority chooses not to continue an indefinite suspension during the PTI period or during the period of conditional discharge, it may restore the employee to employment or initiate disciplinary action against the employee.

3. Where the appointing authority determines that an indefinite suspension should be imposed, a Final Notice of Disciplinary Action shall be issued stating that the employee has been indefinitely suspended pending disposition of the criminal complaint or indictment.

(b) When a court has entered an order of forfeiture pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2C:51-2, the appointing authority shall notify the employee in writing of the forfeiture and record the forfeiture in the employee's personnel records. The appointing authority shall also forward a copy of this notification to the Department of Personnel.

1. If the criminal action does not result in an order of forfeiture issued by the court pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2C:51-2, the appointing authority shall issue a second Preliminary Notice of Disciplinary Action specifying any remaining charges against the employee upon final disposition of the criminal complaint or indictment. The appointing authority shall then proceed under N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.5 and 2.6.

(c) Where an employee has pled guilty or been convicted of a crime or offense which is cause for forfeiture of employment under N.J.S.A. 2C:51-2 but the court has not entered an order of forfeiture, the appointing authority may seek forfeiture by applying to the court for an order of forfeiture. The appointing authority shall not hold a departmental hearing regarding the issue of the applicability of N.J.S.A. 2C:51-2. If the court declines to enter an order of forfeiture in response to the appointing authority's application, the appointing authority may hold a departmental hearing regarding other disciplinary charges, if any, as provided in (b)1 above.

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(a) An appeal from a Final Notice of Disciplinary Action must be filed within 20 days of receipt of the Notice by the employee. Receipt of the Notice on a different date by the employee's attorney or union representative shall not affect this appeal period. 

(b) If the appointing authority fails to provide the employee with a Final Notice of Disciplinary Action, an appeal may be made directly to the Commission within a reasonable time.

(c) The appeal shall be substantially similar in format to the Major Disciplinary Appeal Form illustrated in the subchapter Appendix, incorporated herein by reference, and the employee shall provide a copy of the appeal to the appointing authority. The employee shall attach to the appeal a copy of the Preliminary Notice of Disciplinary Action and, unless (b) above is applicable, the Final Notice of Disciplinary Action. The appeal shall also include the following information:

1. The name, title, mailing address and telephone number of the appointing authority representative to whom the notices were provided;

2. The employee's name, mailing address and telephone number; and

3. The action that is being appealed.

(d) The employee should also include a statement of the reason(s) for the appeal and the requested relief.

(e) Failure of an employee to provide the information specified in (c) above shall delay processing of the appeal until the required information is provided, may result in a reduced back pay award pursuant to N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.10(d)4, or may result in dismissal of the appeal after notice of and a reasonable  opportunity to provide the missing information.

(f) See N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.13 for removal appeals by certain law enforcement officers and firefighters.

Major disciplinary appeal form [PDF]

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(a) Requests for a Commission hearing will be reviewed and determined by the Chairperson or the Chairperson's designee.

(b) Major discipline hearings will be heard by the Commission or referred to the Office of Administrative Law for hearing before an administrative law judge, except that an appeal by certain law enforcement officers or firefighters of a removal shall be heard as provided in N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.13. Minor discipline matters will be heard by the Commission or referred to the Office of Administrative Law for a hearing before an administrative law judge for an employee's last suspension or fine for five working days or less where the aggregate number of days the employee has been suspended or fined in a calendar year, including the last suspension or fine, is 15 working days or more, or for an employee's last suspension or fine where the employee receives more than three suspensions or fines of five working days or less in a calendar year. See N.J.A.C. 1:1 for OAL hearing procedures.

1. Where an employee has pled guilty to or been convicted of a crime or offense which is cause for forfeiture of employment under N.J.S.A. 2C:51-2, but the court has not issued an order of forfeiture, the Commission shall not refer the employee's appeal for a hearing regarding the applicability of N.J.S.A. 2C:51-2 nor make a determination on that issue. See N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.7.

2. Where a court has entered an order of forfeiture, and the appointing authority has so notified the employee, but the employee disputes whether an order of forfeiture was actually entered, the Commission may make a determination on the issue of whether the order was actually entered. See N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.7.

3. Notwithstanding (b)1 and 2 above, the Commission may determine whether an individual must be discharged from a State or local government position due to a permanent disqualification from public employment based upon the prior conviction of a crime or offense involving or touching on a previously held public office or employment, provided, however, that the Attorney General or county prosecutor has not sought or received a court order waiving the disqualification provision. See N.J.S.A. 2C:51-2(d) and (e).

(c) The Commission may adopt, reject or modify the recommended report and decision of an administrative law judge. Copies of all Commission decisions shall be served personally or by regular mail upon the parties.

(d) The Commission may reverse or modify the action of the appointing authority, except that removal shall not be substituted for a lesser penalty.

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(a) Where a disciplinary penalty has been reversed, the Commission shall award back pay, benefits, seniority or restitution of a fine. Such items may be awarded when a disciplinary penalty is modified.

(b) Where a municipal police officer has been suspended based on a pending criminal complaint or indictment, following disposition of the charges the officer shall receive back pay, benefits and seniority pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40A:14-149.1 et seq.

(c) Where an employee, other than a municipal police officer, has been suspended based on a pending criminal complaint or indictment, following disposition of the charges the employee shall receive back pay, benefits and seniority if the employee is found not guilty at trial, the complaint or indictment is dismissed, or the prosecution is terminated.

1. Such items shall not be awarded when the complaint or indictment is disposed of through Conditional Discharge, N.J.S.A. 2C:36A-1, or Pre-Trial Intervention (PTI), N.J.S.A. 2C:43-12 et seq.

2. Where disciplinary action has been taken following disposition of the complaint or indictment, such items shall not be awarded in case of removal. In case of suspension, where the employee has already been suspended for more than six months pending disposition of the complaint or indictment, the disciplinary suspension shall be applied against the period of indefinite suspension. The employee shall receive back pay for the period of suspension beyond six months, but the appointing authority may for good cause deny back pay for the period beyond the disciplinary suspension up to a maximum of six months.

(d) Back pay shall include unpaid salary, including regular wages, overlap shift time, increments and across-the-board adjustments. Benefits shall include vacation and sick leave credits and additional amounts expended by the employee to maintain his or her health insurance coverage during the period of improper suspension or removal.

1. Back pay shall not include items such as overtime pay, holiday premium pay and retroactive clothing, uniform or equipment allowances for periods in which the employee is not working.

2. The award of back pay shall be reduced by the amount of taxes, social security payments, dues, pension payments, and any other sums normally withheld.

3. Where a removal or suspension has been reversed or modified, an indefinite suspension pending the disposition of criminal charges has been reversed, the award of back pay shall be reduced by the amount of money that was actually earned during the period of separation, including any unemployment insurance benefits received, subject to any applicable limitations set forth in (d)4 below.

4. Where a removal or a suspension for more than 30 working days has been reversed or modified or an indefinite suspension pending the disposition of criminal charges has been reversed, and the employee has been unemployed or underemployed for all or a part of the period of separation, and the employee has failed to make reasonable efforts to find suitable employment during the period of separation, the employee shall not be eligible for back pay for any period during which the employee failed to make such reasonable efforts.

i. "Underemployed" shall mean employment during a period of separation from the employee's public employment that does not constitute suitable employment.

ii. "Reasonable efforts" may include, but not be limited to, reviewing classified advertisements in newspapers or trade publications; reviewing Internet or on-line job listings or services; applying for suitable positions; attending job fairs; visiting employment agencies; networking with other people; and distributing resumes.

iii. "Suitable employment" or "suitable position" shall mean employment that is comparable to the employee's permanent career service position with respect to job duties, responsibilities, functions, location, and salary.

iv. The determination as to whether the employee has made reasonable efforts to find suitable employment shall be based upon the totality of the circumstances, including, but not limited to, the nature of the disciplinary action taken against the employee; the nature of the employee's public employment; the employee's skills, education, and experience; the job market; the existence of advertised, suitable employment opportunities; the manner in which the type of employment involved is commonly sought; and any other circumstances deemed relevant based upon the particular facts of the matter.

v. The burden of proof shall be on the employer to establish that the employee has not made reasonable efforts to find suitable employment.

5. An employee shall not be required to mitigate back pay for any period between the issue date of a Civil Service Commission decision reversing or modifying a removal or reversing an indefinite suspension and the date of actual reinstatement. The award of back pay for this time period shall be reduced only by the amount of money that was actually earned during that period, including any unemployment insurance benefits received.

6. Should a Civil Service Commission decision reversing or modifying a removal or reversing an indefinite suspension subsequently be stayed, an individual shall be required to mitigate an award of back pay from the date of the stay through the date of actual reinstatement, in accordance with (d)4i through v above.

7. If an employee also held other employment at the time of the adverse action, the back pay award shall not be reduced by earnings from such other employment. However, if the employee increased his or her work hours at the other employment during the back pay period, the back pay award shall be reduced by the earnings from such additional hours.

8. A back pay award is subject to reduction by any period of unreasonable delay of the appeal proceedings directly attributable to the employee. Delays caused by an employee's representative may not be considered in reducing the award of back pay.

9. A back pay award is subject to reduction for any period of time during which the employee was disabled from working.

10. Funds that must be repaid by the employee shall not be considered when calculating back pay.

(e) Unless otherwise ordered, an award of back pay, benefits and seniority shall be calculated from the effective date of the appointing authority's improper action to the date of the employee's actual reinstatement to the payroll. 

(f) When the Commission awards back pay and benefits, determination of the actual amounts shall be settled by the parties whenever possible.

(g) If settlement on an amount cannot be reached, either party may request, in writing, Commission review of the outstanding issue. In a Commission review:

1. The appointing authority shall submit information on the salary the employee was earning at the time of the adverse action, plus increments and across-the-board adjustments that the employee would have received during the separation period; and

2. The employee shall submit an affidavit setting forth all income received during the separation.

(h) See N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.13 for situations in which certain law enforcement officers or firefighters have appealed a removal that has been reversed or modified.

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(a) When the Commissioner or Board makes an award of back pay, it may also award interest in the following situations:

1. When an appointing authority has unreasonably delayed compliance with an order of the Commissioner or Board; or

2. Where the Board finds sufficient cause based on the particular case.

(b) Where applicable, interest shall be at the annual rate as set forth in New Jersey court rules, R.4:42-11.

(c) Before interest is applied, an award of back pay shall be reduced in accordance with N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.10(d)2 and 3.

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(a) The Civil Service Commission shall award partial or full reasonable counsel fees incurred in proceedings before it and incurred in major disciplinary proceedings at the departmental level where an employee has prevailed on all or substantially all of the primary issues before the Commission.

(b) When the Commission awards counsel fees, the actual amount shall be settled by the parties whenever possible.

(c) Subject to the provisions of (d) and (e) below, the following fee ranges shall apply in determining counsel fees:

1. Associate in a law firm: $100.00 to $150.00 per hour;

2. Partner or equivalent in a law firm with fewer than 15 years of experience in the practice of law: $150.00 to $175.00 per hour; or

3. Partner or equivalent in a law firm with 15 or more years of experience in the practice of law, or, notwithstanding the number of years of experience, with a practice concentrated in employment or labor law: $175.00 to $200.00 per hour.

(d) If an attorney has signed a specific fee agreement with the employee or employee's negotiations representative, the attorney shall disclose the agreement to the appointing authority. The fee ranges set forth in (c) above may be adjusted if the attorney has signed such an agreement, provided that the attorney shall not be entitled to a greater rate than that set forth in the agreement.

(e) A fee amount may also be determined or the fee ranges in (c) above adjusted based on the circumstances of a particular matter, in which case the following factors (see the Rules of Professional Conduct of the New Jersey Court Rules, at RPC 1.5(a)) shall be considered:

1. The time and labor required, the novelty and difficulty of the questions involved, and the skill requisite to perform the legal service properly;

2. The fee customarily charged in the locality for similar legal services, applicable at the time the fee is calculated;

3. The nature and length of the professional relationship with the employee; and

4. The experience, reputation and ability of the attorney performing the services.

(f) Counsel fees incurred in matters at the departmental level that do not reach the Civil Service Commission on appeal or are incurred in furtherance of appellate court review shall not be awarded by the Commission.

(g) Reasonable out-of-pocket costs shall be awarded, including, but not limited to, costs associated with expert and subpoena fees and out-of-State travel expenses. Costs associated with normal office overhead shall not be awarded.

(h) The attorney shall submit an affidavit and any other documentation to the appointing authority.

(i) If settlement on an amount cannot be reached, either party may request, in writing, Commission review.

(j) See N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.13 for situations in which certain law enforcement officers or firefighters have appealed a removal.

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(a) For purposes of this section:

1. "Law enforcement officer" or "officer" is defined as an individual employed as a permanent, full-time member of a State, county, or municipal law enforcement agency who is statutorily empowered to act for the detection, investigation, arrest, conviction, detention, or rehabilitation of persons violating the criminal laws of this State and statutorily required to successfully complete a training course approved by, or certified as substantially equivalent to such an approved course, by the Police Training Commission.  See N.J.S.A. 52:17B-66 et seq. With the exception of the Juvenile Justice Commission, which is covered by this definition, the Department of Law and Public Safety shall not be considered a law enforcement agency for purposes of this definition.

2. "Firefighter" is defined as a full-time, paid firefighter employed by a public fire department as provided in N.J.S.A. 40A:14-200.

3. "Appellant" refers to a "law enforcement officer" or "firefighter" as defined in (a)1 and 2 above.

4. "Removal," "removal date," "and "removal effective date" shall mean the first date on which the law enforcement officer or firefighter is separated from employment without pay.

(b) If the law enforcement officer or firefighter requests a departmental hearing regarding his or her removal in accordance with N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.5, the appointing authority shall conduct a hearing within 30 days of the removal's effective date, unless:

1. The officer or firefighter agrees to waive his or her right to the hearing; or

2. The officer or firefighter and the appointing authority agree to an adjournment of the hearing to a later date.

(c) The appointing authority shall issue a Final Notice of Disciplinary Action within 20 days of the hearing and serve the Final Notice to the appellant either by personal service or certified mail.  If the appointing authority does not hold a hearing as required in (b) above, the appointing authority shall issue a Final Notice within 30 days of the removal effective date.

(d) The officer or firefighter shall have 20 days from the date of receipt of the Final Notice to appeal the removal. Receipt of the Final Notice on a different date by the appellant's attorney or negotiations representative shall not affect this appeal period.  If the appellant does not receive the Final Notice as required by (c) above, he or she shall file an appeal of removal within a reasonable time.  The officer or firefighter shall file the appeal simultaneously with the Office of Administrative Law and the Civil Service Commission using the Law Enforcement Officer and Firefighter Removal Appeal Form in the Appendix to this section.  If the appellant files an appeal within 20 days of receipt of the Final Notice with the Civil Service Commission but not with the Office of Administrative Law, or the appellant files an appeal within 20 days of receipt of the Final Notice with the Office of Administrative Law but not with the Commission, the appeal shall still be considered timely.  However, if the appellant fails to submit the appeal within 20 days to either the Office of Administrative Law or the Commission, the appeal shall be considered untimely and the Commission shall dismiss the appeal.  See N.J.A.C. 1:4B for processing of the appeal at the Office of Administrative Law.

1. If the appellant fails to provide the information and documents required by the Law Enforcement Officer and Firefighter Removal Appeal Form, after notice of and reasonable opportunity to correct the deficiency, the Commission may dismiss the appeal.

            (e) Once the administrative law judge at the Office of Administrative Law who is presiding over an officer or firefighter's removal appeal renders an initial decision, the Office of Administrative Law shall immediately transmit the decision to the Commission for review. 

(f) The Commission shall complete its review and issue its final administrative determination regarding the appellant's removal appeal within 45 days of the Commission's receipt of the administrative law judge's initial decision. If the Commission does not issue its final administrative determination within 45 days, the administrative law judge's initial decision shall be deemed the final administrative determination, except that the Commission may, at its discretion, extend its review period by no more than an additional 15 days.  If the Commission does not issue a final administrative determination by the end of the additional 15-day period, the administrative law judge's initial decision shall be deemed the final administrative determination, unless, for good cause, the Chairperson of the Commission provides a signed order of extension to the Director of the Office of Administrative Law and serves copies on all affected parties. 

(g) The Commission's final administrative determination shall be rendered within 180 calendar days from the date on which the officer or firefighter was initially suspended without pay, except that:

1. This 180-day limit shall not apply to disciplinary charges related to a pending criminal investigation, nor to disciplinary charges which allege conduct that would constitute a violation of criminal law and which seek removal from employment.  See N.J.S.A. 40A:14-201(a).

(h) If the Commission fails to render a final administrative determination of an appeal of an officer's or firefighter's removal from employment within the required 180 days, the appellant shall begin receiving the base salary that he or she was receiving at the time of his or her removal and shall continue to receive such salary until the Commission renders a final administrative determination, provided, however, that the following days shall not be counted toward the 180-day period:

1. The period between the date of removal and the date on which the officer or firefighter requests a departmental hearing;

2. The period of agreed-upon adjournment of a departmental hearing;

3. The period between the date of removal and the date on which the appellant appeals a Final Notice of Disciplinary Action with the Office of Administrative Law and the Civil Service Commission;

4. If applicable, the gap in time between the date of timely filing of an appeal with the Office of Administrative Law and the date of filing of the appeal with the Civil Service Commission;

5.   If applicable, the gap in time between the date of timely filing with the Civil Service Commission and the date of filing of the appeal with the Office of Administrative Law;

6. The period of time for which appellant or his or her attorney or negotiations representative requests and is granted postponement of a hearing or other delay;

7. The period of time during which the appellant or his or her attorney or negotiations representative causes by his or her actions a postponement, adjournment or delay of a hearing;

8. The period of time for which the appellant or his or her attorney or negotiations representative agrees with the appointing authority to a postponement or delay of a hearing;

9. The period of time during which the administrative law judge or the Civil Service Commission, for good cause, postpones or delays a hearing;

10. The period of time for which the administrative law judge has been granted an extension for filing an initial decision in accordance with N.J.A.C. 1:1-18.8; and

11. The period of time for which the Commission has extended its period of review of the administrative law judge's initial decision in accordance with (f) above.

(i) The following are special circumstances which may affect the receipt of the appealing officer's or firefighter's base salary after the 180-day period:

1. If the appellant or the appellant's representative requests and is granted, or otherwise causes by his or her actions, the postponement, adjournment, or delay of a hearing, the appellant shall not receive full pay during the period of postponement, adjournment, or delay of a hearing.

2. The appellant shall not continue to receive his or her base salary if the administrative law judge's initial decision recommends that the appellant's appeal be denied, unless and until such time as the Civil Service Commission renders a final administrative decision rejecting the administrative law judge's recommendation and ordering the appellant's reinstatement to employment.

3. If the administrative law judge's initial decision recommends reversal of the removal, or that the officer or firefighter receive discipline other than removal, the appellant shall receive his or her base salary on the date provided in the administrative law judge's initial decision, provided, however, that if the appellant is already receiving his or her base salary at the time of the administrative law judge's initial decision, the appellant shall continue to receive such base salary.

4. If the Civil Service Commission grants the officer's or firefighter's appeal, the appointing authority shall immediately reinstate the appellant to employment, and the appellant shall receive his or her base salary, as well as, within 60 days of the issuance of the Commission's decision, all back pay, benefits, seniority, and counsel fees that may be due in accordance with N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.10 and 2.12.

5. If the officer or firefighter appeals a Civil Service Commission decision upholding his or her removal to the Superior Court, Appellate Division, the appellant shall not be entitled to receive his or her base salary.

6. If the appointing authority appeals the Civil Service Commission decision to the Superior Court, Appellate Division, the officer or firefighter shall continue to receive his or her base salary during the pendency of the appeal.

(j) The following relates to an officer's or firefighter's obligation to reimburse his or her base salary to the appointing authority:

1. If the Civil Service Commission denies the officer's or firefighter's appeal, the appellant shall reimburse the appointing authority all pay he or she has received during the period of appeal.  If the officer or firefighter fails to do so, the appointing authority may have a lien for the amount owed on any and all property and income to which the appellant has or will have an interest in, in accordance with N.J.S.A. 40A:14-205(b).

2. If the appellate court affirms the appointing authority's removal of the officer or firefighter, the appellant shall reimburse the appointing authority for all pay he or she has received during the period of appeal.   If the officer or firefighter fails to do so, the appointing authority may have a lien for the amount owed on any and all property and income to which the appellant has or will have an interest in, in accordance with N.J.S.A. 40A:14-206(b).

Law Enforcement Officer and Firefighter Removal Appeal Form [PDF]

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