Assemblyman Moriarty Introduces Bill To Ban Binary Tiggers, Modification Turns Firearms Into Assault Weapons
A 30-round magazine can be emptied in 30 seconds with the use of a trigger adaptation called a binary trigger. Manufactured by gun makers to circumvent the national ban on bump stocks, the binary trigger allows a firearm to shoot one bullet when the trigger is pulled and one when the trigger is released.
“A binary trigger turns a firearm into an assault rifle in minutes; and magnifies the impact a shooter can have with this weapon by seconds,” said Assemblyman Paul Moriarty. “We’ve seen what a shooter with a bump stock, a similar type of adaptation that increases firing speed, can do. We may not be able to stop the manufacturing of these tools; however, we can discourage sales and ensure that any individual who is in possession of one is held accountable to the fullest extent of the law.”
Moriarty introduced legislation Tuesday that would ban this type of modification, establish a crime of possessing or selling a binary trigger and clarify that a firearm affixed with a binary trigger constitutes a machine gun. The bill was prompted by this New York Times article.
“Acts of mass gun violence cannot be our new norm,” continued Moriarty. “If it takes banning firearm modifications like this one to protect more innocent people, then that’s what we have to do.”
The measure aims to strengthen current law prohibiting the sale and possession of bump stocks and trigger cranks, which are similar devices that enable a person to fire a semiautomatic firearm at a greater speed than originally intended by the firearm manufacturers.
The Las Vegas mass shooting last year prompted the U.S. Department of Justice to ban bump stocks, which enabled the shooter to fire more than 1100 rounds in 11 minutes.
To ensure nursing mothers have a safe place to breastfeed when they’re in public, a measure sponsored by Assemblywoman Gabriela Mosquera to provide lactation rooms in certain public facilities was signed into law by Governor Phil Murphy.
The law (formerly bill A-1663) requires certain public facilities to make at least one lactation room available upon request to any mother utilizing on-site services, including any:
- health care facility;
- federally qualified health center;
- county or municipal welfare office or agency;
- Medical Assistance Customer Center (MACC);
- One-Stop Career Center operated by or under the authority of, the Department of Labor and Workforce Development;
- adoption agency or center operated by or under the authority of, the Division of Child Protection and Permanency in the Department of Children and Families;
- foster care agency contracted by the Division of Child Protection and Permanency; or
- local office of the Division of Child Protection and Permanency
The presence of any such lactation room will not abrogate or otherwise limit the mother’s right to breast feed her baby in public, as provided by existing law.
“The benefits of breastfeeding for babies and mothers are well documented. While some women are comfortable nursing in public, others are not,” said Mosquera (D-Camden/Gloucester). “This law will ensure mothers have a quiet place to nurse their babies while they take care of business.”
The law requires the Department of Health (DOH) to create signage that contains information about breastfeeding, affirms a mother’s right to nurse in public and indicates that lactation rooms are available for the privacy and comfort of nursing mothers.
The signage must be distributed directly to the facilities identified in the bill, and posted in a printable format on the department’s website. A facility required to provide a lactation room must to display the signage in a clear and conspicuous manner in its public waiting room and any lactation room.
The DOH is required to establish and post on its website a list of all facilities that have lactation rooms. The list will be regularly updated to provide the most current availability.
Additionally, the law requires the Department of Education (DOE) to annually report to the Governor and Legislature on the lactation-related policies that have been implemented at schools, colleges, and universities in the state. Each annual report will summarize the applicable policies in this area, indicate the number and percentage of policies that authorize access to a designated lactation room; and address how were communicated to students, parents, and guardians during the preceding school year. Each report will be posted at a publicly-accessible location on the DOE’s website.
The measure was approved by the full Assembly in May by a vote of 76-0, and by the Senate in June 2018, 39-0.
For years, New Jersey has been one among only a few states to ban funeral homes from serving food and refreshments on their premises. Acknowledging the limits this places on families and friends coming together in times of mourning, Assembly Democrats Nancy Pinkin (D-Middlesex), Paul Moriarty (D-Camden, Gloucester) and Andrew Zwicker (D-Somerset, Mercer, Middlesex, Hunterdon) sponsored legislation to amend the restriction, which the Governor recently signed into law.
Under the new law (formerly A-4323), funeral homes will be able to serve food and non-alcoholic beverages on site given distribution, storage and consumption remain separate from areas used for the storage and preparation of a body. The law will not permit preparation of food on site.
Sponsors of the new law released the following joint statement:
“This is about community, comfort and convenience. It’s about helping funeral homes in the State to expand their business and services to better provide for the families they serve.
“For people of many faiths and cultures being able to gather around food to celebrate the life and memory of a loved one who has passed is very important. And often, the ability to serve something as simple as a cup of coffee or a pastry during a wake or service can provide great comfort.
“With this law, mortuary service providers will be able to better cater memorial services to meet their customer’s needs and in a way that best honors those who have passed on.”
To close a loophole in New Jersey law regarding animal fighting, legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrat Paul Moriarty to criminalize the possession of animal fighting paraphernalia was signed into law Friday by Governor Phil Murphy.
The new law (A-4698) makes it illegal to possess animal fighting paraphernalia for the purpose of promoting, facilitating or participating in animal fighting or baiting. Owning, possessing, selling, transferring or manufacturing such materials will be a crime of the third degree under State animal cruelty statutes, punishable by three to five years in prison or a fine of up to $15,000, or both.
Animal fighting is a felony in New Jersey, but it previously was not illegal to possess paraphernalia used in animal fighting activities.
“No domesticated animal is born knowing how to viciously fight another animal; they are trained to do so by people who want nothing more than to profit off of their suffering,” said Moriarty (D-Camden, Gloucester). “Strengthening our animal cruelty laws will undoubtedly help us reduce incidents in New Jersey and rescue animals from abusive situations.”
Additionally, the law establishes a civil penalty of between $3,000 and $5,000 for owning, possessing, buying, selling, transferring or manufacturing animal fighting paraphernalia.
The measure passed the Assembly in June, 76-0, and the Senate in May, 38-0.
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Assemblywoman Mosquera Condemns Trump Administration For Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Cuts
Upon learning of the presidential administration’s proposed changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) – formerly known as the Food Stamp Program – Assemblywoman Gabriela Mosquera (D-Camden and Gloucester) released the following statement:
“Millions of Americans will find themselves unable to provide for their families if the President’s proposed SNAP eligibility restrictions are enacted. Individuals throughout the country will struggle to put food on the table if the assistance they require is taken away by an administration that is incapable of empathizing with those in need.
“In New Jersey alone, nearly 68,000 residents would lose access to this program – including senior citizens, children, and individuals with disabilities. This is entirely unacceptable. When someone spends all their time just trying to make ends meet, knowing where their next meal will come from can make all the difference.
“To deny our citizens the simple yet essential support they rely on would lead to negative repercussions throughout the entire community. Malnourished people are more tired, distracted, uncoordinated and forgetful, which can lead to issues at work, in the car, and so on.
“Even children would be unable to avoid the harmful effects of this administration’s heartless proposal. More than half a million students would no longer receive free school lunches if the President’s plan is approved.
“Our society cannot and must not fail those who depend on us for help. President Trump’s administration must not authorize the proposed changes to this important program.”