Codey Signs Two Bills As Acting N.J. Governor, With Corzine Away

bush_signing_170Senate President Richard Codey, serving as acting governor while Gov. Jon Corzine is out of state, signed into law Saturday a bill that will upgrade the offense of jury tampering, and another bill declaring Oct. 20 “Postpartum Depression Awareness Day.” The jury tampering bill will upgrade the crime of threatening or using force against a juror to a first- or second-degree offense from a third-degree offense, said Essex County Prosecutor Paula Dow, who helped draft the bill with Assemblyman John McKeon (D-Essex) and Assemblywoman Mila Jasey (D-Essex).

The signing took place at Codey’s home, where his wife, several lawmakers and law enforcement officials were present.

Dow said she pushed for the jury tampering bill because of an instance in Essex County where jurors were threatened.

The new bill will penalize people with longer sentences if they threaten a juror or use force, Dow said.

“They were going to get a slap on the hand. We don’t want that to happen,” said Essex County Sheriff Armando Fontoura.

Regarding the postpartum bill, Codey pushed for the resolution in Trenton along with Jasey.

The resolution is an issue close to Codey’s heart because his wife, Mary Jo Codey, suffered from it. Over the years, the couple have openly discussed the problem in order to raise public awareness.

“It makes it very special,” said Codey about his wife being present for the signing.

The resolution asks public officials and residents to observe Oct. 20 with activities and programs on postpartum depression. Star Ledger.

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