The November 2012 New Jersey Ballot -
Two Statewide Questions
In addition to voting for candidates for a variety of offices in November, New Jersey voters will also be asked to vote "yes" or "no" on two public questions. The opinion of the majority is binding and will determine State policy on these matters.
$750 MILLION BOND FOR NJ COLLEGE CONSTRUCTIONVoters will determine whether or not New Jersey should provide $750 million for certain types of new construction at specified New Jersey colleges and universities. The bond issue would include:
$300 million for new facilities at public research universities including Rutgers University and the New Jersey Institute of Technology.
$247.5 million for facilities at the eight state colleges and universities.
$150 million to county colleges.
$52.5 million to private institutions, except for those with total endowments of more than $1 billion — a caveat meant to exclude Princeton University.
NEW JERSEY JUDICIAL SALARY AND BENEFITS AMENDMENTThis question asks voters to vote yes or no on amending the New Jersey State Constitution to redefine justices' and judges' salary and pension benefits. Specifically, if approved by a majority of the voters, the measure would establish that lawmakers have the authority to increase the amount judges have to contribute to their benefits. The measure was proposed and approved for placement on the ballot by the Legislature and Governor following a New Jersey Supreme Court declaring that a recent measure to increase judges' pension and benefit costs was unconstitutional. The rationale of the Court was that the current language of the New Jersey State Constitution is meant to protect judges once they are on the bench from being subject to undue influence and potential retaliation by a Governor and legislators who may disagree with decisions they have made or are considering. Those disagreeing with this decision believe the Constitutional protection is, and should remain, limited to salaries and not be applied to benefits.