Pending Legislation

The 2016-17 legislative session began on January 12, 2016.

You can search for the text of the bills and their status here:


  • Establishes Behavioral Health Insurance Claims Advocacy Program - A909/ S692

Special Education

  • Establishes Autism Education Council - A931/ S1895
  • Establishes certain requirements for use of physical restraint on students with disabilities in school districts and approved private schools for students with disabilities - A501/ S1163  Autism New Jersey Testimony/Recommendations>>


  • Requires NJT to limit fare increases under its discount program for senior citizens, persons with disabilities, and college students; designated as "Fare Affordability and Ridership Empowerment (FARE) Act." - A3075/ S1123


  • Designates April 2nd of each year as "World Autism Awareness Day."– AJR54

Children’s Services

  • Provides protections for children under the age of 18 with developmental disabilities and individuals with developmental disabilities ages 18-21 receiving services from Division of Children's System of Care. -- A3386


  • Provides protections for individuals with developmental disabilities through accountability and transparency; designated as "Stephen Komninos' Law." --  2503/S516

Recently-Enacted Legislation

You can search for the text of the bills and their status here:

Bus Safety

  • Requires autism training for bus drivers and aides – A1029/S274
    Signed into law 11/9/15. P.L.2015, c.123  Read more>>
  • Allows student with disability to bring service animal on school bus - A3690/S2601
    Signed into law 3/23/2015 P.L.2015, c.29

Public Safety/Law Enforcement

  • "MVP Emergency Alert System" (establishes alert similar to Amber Alert and Silver Alert for missing vulnerable persons) – S2668/A4270
    Signed into law 1/11/16  P.L.2015, c.184.  Read more>>
  • Increasing penalties for those who endanger adults with developmental disabilities – S2940/A4531
    Signed into law 1/11/16  P.L.2015, c.186   Read more>>
  • Establishes "New Jersey Task Force on Abuse of Persons who are Elderly or Disabled." – S157/A1120
    Signed into law 5/23/16 P.L. 2016, c.3  Read more>>


  • ABLE Act (tax-free disability savings accounts) – S2770/A3956
    Signed into law 1/11/16  P.L.2015, c. 185 Read more>>

Adult Services 

  • Requires one-time application for requesting services for individuals with developmental disabilities from DCF and DHS- A2717/S2065
    Signed into law 12/11/2014 P.L.2014, c.78
  • Requires complaint for guardianship of person receiving services from Division of Developmental Disabilities to include one of the documents identified in bill- A2936/S1957
    Signed into law 11/9/2015 P.L.2015, c.132 
  • Limits to DDD's "Return Home New Jersey" Policy - S3117/A4781
    Signed into law 1/11/16 P.L.2015, c. 192 Read more>>
  • Requires DHS and DMVA to conduct or contract for follow-up studies of former residents transitioning to community from their facilities - A1098/S671
    Signed into law 1/11/2016 P.L.2015, c.197
  • Requires certain notifications for termination of services to persons with developmental disabilities and providers- A4420/S3056
    Signed into law 1/19/2016 Approved P.L.2015, c.304
  • Requires DHS to develop timeline for use by individuals with developmental disabilities to gain benefit of State and federal programs; requires posting timeline on DHS, DCF, and DOE websites-S1041/ A1449  
    Signed into law 12/5/2016 P.L.2016, c.72 

Special Education

  • NEW: Requires teacher preparation program for instructional certificate to include certain amount of instruction or clinical experience in special education and for students with disabilities endorsement to include credit hours in autism spectrum disorder - A2786/S1474
    Signed into law 2/6/2017 P.L.2007, c.6. Read more>>
  • Establishes Office of the Special Education Ombudsman in DOE -- S451/A1103
    Signed into law 1/19/16 P.L.2015, c.219 Read more>>


  • NEW:  Provides for voluntary contributions by taxpayers on gross income tax returns to support autism programs - A3267/ S2519
    Signed into law 2/10/2017. P.L.2017, c.24.  Read more>>



New Autism Laws

Listen to radio interviewAutism New Jersey Executive Director, Dr. Suzanne Buchanan gave an update on new and pending autism laws on the Issues and Ideas Radio Show with Chris DeBello.

Click here to listen>>

NJ Statehouse Dome

Learn More

To learn more about the legislative process, visit these useful sites:


New Jersey Legislature Homepage
The Office of Legislative Services (OLS)


The Library of Congress -- THOMAS

Key Committees

Legislation that affects the autism community is typically first heard in the following committees. Legislation must be voted “out of committee” prior to a vote by the full Senate and General Assembly. The Governor’s signature is then the final step to pass the legislation and enact it into law. 

Key Senate Committees:
Budget and Appropriations
Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens

Key Assembly Committee:
Financial Institutions and Insurance
Health and Senior Services
Housing and Community Development
Human Services
Women and Children  

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Phone: 609.588.8200; 800.4.AUTISM | Fax: 609.588.8858