Acting on his belief that we can keep our country safe from terrorism while also protecting civil liberties, Governor Chris Christie signed bipartisan legislation requiring out-of-state law enforcement to report surveillance activities in New Jersey.
The bill, which passed both the Assembly last October and the Senate in June by wide margins, was first proposed as a response to the New York Police Department's (NYPD) surveillance of Muslims in New Jersey. Specifically, the legislation "requires that out-of-State law enforcement entities inform the county prosecutor 24 hours prior to entering the borders of the county in which the out-of-State entity intends to conduct counter-terrorism activities." Under the law, if this notification requirement is not met, "the Attorney General or a county prosecutor may seek a temporary or permanent injunction in a summary proceeding in Superior Court."
"As a former U.S. Attorney appointed in the aftermath of September 11, 2001, I strongly believe we need to do everything in our power to prevent terrorist attacks on our country and keep our people safe," said Governor Christie today. "I also believe we must protect and maintain civil liberties, especially those of the citizens in New Jersey's Muslim community. This bipartisan legislation will help us reach that balance, and I am pleased to sign it into law today."
By signing this bill, the Governor is building on the principles and convictions he has acted on during his entire time in public office. As the United States Attorney in New Jersey from 2002-2008, Governor Christie built an aggressive record of combating terrorism. He prosecuted several of the first major anti-terrorism cases after September 11, including the Daniel Pearl case, the Hemant Lakhani case, the Fort Dix plot and operation Arabian Knight. At the same time, Governor Christie worked to improve relations between law enforcement and the Muslim community, a commitment he has kept during his term in the governor's office.