On January 21, 2020—what seems like a lifetime ago—Governor Phil Murphy signed legislation significantly amending the New Jersey mini-WARN Act (officially known as the “Millville Dallas Airmotive Plant Job Loss Notification Act”) (NJ WARN), but the effective date of the amendments was put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The “pause” on the amendments was to have been lifted ninety days after the governor lifted the state of emergency declared in Executive Order 103, but the state of emergency has remained in effect. Consequently, the proposed major expansion of NJ WARN still has not been implemented.
Apparently growing impatient, New Jersey legislators recently introduced Senate Bill 3162 to “unlink” the NJ WARN amendments to the state of emergency. And on December 1, 2022, the New Jersey Senate Labor Committee advanced the bill, which, if enacted, would make the onerous new NJ WARN requirements effective in ninety days. Accordingly, the two-year reprieve from this new burdensome law may soon be over. It is unknown, however, whether the bill has the support of the full legislature or the governor.
While we wait to see how this plays out, employers may once again want to review the pending NJ WARN provisions, which will eventually be enacted, and prepare accordingly.
Ogletree Deakins will continue to monitor developments with respect to Senate Bill 3162 and will post updates on the firm’s New Jersey and Reductions in Force blogs as additional information becomes available. Important information for employers is also available via the firm’s webinar and podcast programs.