Author Topic: Blue law exceptions (Can sell on Sunday)  (Read 17878 times)

Offline Editor

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Re: Blue law exceptions (Can sell on Sunday)
« Reply #15 on: May 28, 2008, 09:09:51 AM »
Drive up to Harriman State Park via 17 on a Sunday and you'll understand the Blue Laws better than anyone can explain it.

You need less than you think you do and if you really need it, you have 6 other days to buy it.

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Blue laws repealed?
« Reply #16 on: March 17, 2010, 09:59:58 PM »
Christie's blue law repeal proposal criticized
Last updated: Wednesday March 17, 2010, 8:19 PM
BY MICHAEL GARTLAND
The Record
STAFF WRITER

Bergen County Democrats blasted, for a second straight day on Wednesday, Governor Christies plan to repeal the law that bars businesses from opening on Sundays.

County Republicans responded that the public should be allowed to vote on whether to keep the blue law in a countywide referendum.

Several Democratic elected officials, appearing at a press conference outside the Bergen Town Center mall in Paramus, questioned the governors estimate that a repeal would generate $65 million a year in additional sales tax revenue and predicted that open businesses on Sunday would lead to additional crime and a drain on municipal infrastructures.

I have four words for the governor: Over my dead body, Paramus Mayor James Tedesco said. This is about protecting the people of Bergen County. This is about Paramus incurring more cost, because we have to have more uniformed police officers, more fire, more ambulance, more everything.

Christies proposal to repeal the state blue law, which has been upheld through several court decisions and two countywide referendums, comes as both political parties battle for control of county government. The county executive, county sheriff and three freeholder seats will be contested in the general election in November.

State Sen. Paul Sarlo, D-Wood-Ridge, described Christies proposal to roll back a law supported by many in Bergen County as a major political miscalculation in an election year.

This makes no sense, Sarlo said. Dennis McNerney is the luckiest Irishman around today. This is a gift to him.

McNerney, the county executive and a Democrat, is running for reelection.

Bergen County maintained Wednesday that neither Christie nor his aides informed them that he would present the proposal as part of his budget plan.

I didnt know about it, County Clerk Kathleen Donovan said.

Donovan, who is running against McNerney for county executive, said she supports the blue laws but said she would like to see the issue decided through a referendum. She said she would not support the governor if he attempts to repeal the state law in the Legislature.

I would prefer that it go to a referendum, Donovan said.

Sarlo described any calls for a referendum as disingenuous because the Legislature is set to vote on the budget in June. It would be impossible to hold a referendum in the interim, he said.

It isnt going to be done by referendum, Sarlo said. If it was going to be done by referendum, it wouldnt be on this years budget.

Local businesses offered mixed feedback. John Park, manager of Kiddie World, a childrens furniture store in Hasbrouck Heights, said the government shouldnt tell merchants when to close.

I think it should be left up to the business owner and the public, Park said. If the public doesnt want to go out shopping on Sundays, thats their decision.

Given the option, Park said he would probably open Sundays: Any dollar helps in this economy.

Lilli Hamrah, co-owner of Hamrahs, a womens clothing store in Cresskill, said merchants and their employers need a day off.

People can only buy so much, she said. Her customers, she said, would rather spend Sundays with their families than shop.

Opening on Sundays would be a terrible burden to retail workers, Hamrah said.

Westfield Garden State Plaza, Bergen Countys largest shopping mall, declined to comment. Macys declined to comment, referring questions to the New Jersey Retail Merchants Association, which supports lifting the blue laws. The association said that Sunday hours would generate $1.1 billion a year in extra business for Bergen County retailers, along with $65 million in state sales tax revenues.

Bob Yudin, chairman of the Bergen County Republican Organization, questioned Christies revenue projections and said the governor did not seek his feedback before making the budget presentation on Tuesday.

If I had been given the opportunity, I would have tried to convince the administration not to do this, Yudin said. I would have taken issue with his figures. I would have loved to have seen the empirical data, because I think that figure is way off.

Bergen County Freeholder John Driscoll, a Republican, said he, too, had not heard of the proposal before Christies presentation.

People make mistakes, he said when asked about Christies lack of communication with Bergen County Republicans. Maybe there was miscommunication. Well learn from it.

Staff Writer Kathleen Lynn contributed to this article. E-mail: gartland@northjersey.com
« Last Edit: March 17, 2010, 10:01:33 PM by Editor »

Offline Chief Oratam

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Re: Blue law exceptions (Can sell on Sunday)
« Reply #17 on: March 18, 2010, 09:58:03 PM »
The whole Blue Law issue should be left to the people to vote on and decide, as it always has been....not for the Legislature to decide...

This is getting out of hand now, where the few are trying to cram B.S. 10 trillion dollar healthcare system down our throats this coming Sunday....even though the majority dosn't want it......

Now Christie want's the few to decide for the many....

I understand that he's just trying to raise more money in the form of taxe's, to try and bail out a bankrupt State...but this isn't the way to do it....
« Last Edit: March 28, 2010, 11:40:06 AM by Chief Oratam »

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Blue Laws (AP article)
« Reply #18 on: March 27, 2010, 07:28:04 PM »
NJ county's Sunday buying ban may be checking out
By ANGELA DELLI SANTI, Associated Press Writer Angela Delli Santi, Associated Press Writer
Sat Mar 27, 4:17 pm ET

PARAMUS, N.J. During a powerful storm that flooded basements, uprooted trees and left tens of thousands of families without power through a late winter weekend, residents of one New Jersey county had to wait till Monday morning to buy sump pumps, generators and other cleanup tools at local stores.

That's because Bergen County one of the country's richest retail areas with its five shopping malls and 900,000 residents still enforces "blue laws" that prohibit Sunday shopping, except for essentials like food and gasoline. You can't buy clothes or electronics, but you can pick up a case of beer or a dozen roses, or grab lunch at a diner.

The Sunday shopping ban in New Jersey's largest county among the nation's last remaining blue laws may be lifted to satisfy the state's hunger for more sales tax revenue. The budget proposed last week by new Republican Gov. Chris Christie assumes $65 million in new sales tax revenue by jettisoning the law starting July 1.

While some people may see Bergen County's blue law as antiquated, many residents view it as quaint and don't want to lose it.

"Sundays in this town are wonderful," said Carl Shaw, a 56-year-old Bergen County native who owns Norton Paints in Paramus, which is closed on Sundays by law. "To the people who say 'I need it now,' I say 'Plan ahead or come Saturday or Monday.'"

The few remaining blue laws are mostly in the South and Midwest and mostly limit liquor or car sales on Sundays, said Jacqueline Byers, research director at the National Association of Counties.

Some officials believe dropping Bergen County's blue law would allow it to pick up Sunday customers from the nation's largest metropolitan area; Manhattan is just a 20-minute cab ride away.

Bergen County Executive Dennis McNerney said there's more at stake than money. He told a Senate committee conducting a public hearing on the budget this week that lifting the ban would strain local police and fire departments and adversely affect the affluent suburban county's quality of life.

"The blue laws have been in effect in Bergen County since the 1950s to give our citizens ... one day of rest from the traffic jams, noise pollution and accidents that are a nightmare on Saturdays and long weekends," McNerney told the panel.

Bergen's law has been around longer than its five malls. Longer even than the traffic backup clogging Route 17 at rush-hour, which is what proponents say makes the ban really sacred the promise that they can get where they're going on Sundays, even if it's not to a mall.

John Holub, president of the New Jersey Retail Merchants Association, said lifting the ban makes economic sense.

He said adding a day of shopping in Bergen County would generate 3,200 jobs and more than $1.1 billion in net new retail sales a year. A portion of those sales would be from people who would have shopped online when retailers in their home county are closed.

Shaw, the paint store owner, disagrees. He believes his sales revenue would be roughly the same whether he's open for business six days a week or seven.

Christie spokesman Michael Drewniak said the governor's proposal was driven by economic necessity. He said the governor would reconsider if opponents come up with a credible alternative that raises $65 million.

"We still would like (Sunday shopping)," Drewniak said, but "we're respectful of local opposition."

When New Jersey lifted a statewide prohibition on Sunday shopping decades ago, most counties quickly opted out. The last county to do so was Hudson, also in densely populated North Jersey, in the mid-80s.

Bergen voters have held tight to their no-shopping tradition, defeating prior attempts to lift the ban. The most recent referendum, in 1993, was defeated by about 80,000 votes. A 1980 attempt to overturn the blue laws lost by nearly 35,000 votes.

"Blue laws hits home with people they're outraged," said Sarlo, a Democrat who represents Bergen County.

Byers said most blue laws originated as state rules that individual counties or cities were later allowed to repeal, resulting in a hodgepodge of local regulations. For example, the borough of Paramus has a more restrictive blue law than the other 69 towns in Bergen County, allowing only food, gas and goods for charities to be sold on Sundays.

The name is believed to have derived either from 18th century usage of the word "blue" to disparage those with puritanical beliefs or from an early set of rules in New Haven, Conn., that were printed on blue paper.

Repealing the Bergen County law could be accomplished through legislation or voter referendum. Sarlo said the Democratic-controlled Legislature is unlikely to support a bill repealing the law.

Christie further angered opponents with a declaration this week that a giant retail and entertainment complex being built in the Meadowlands in Bergen County would not be subject to the ban.

"We're all quite perplexed on how he intends to do this," Sarlo said. "He's taking it away from the will of the people.

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Blue Law Repeal?
« Reply #19 on: November 25, 2012, 11:56:29 PM »
Bergen Beat Blog: Leave the Blue Laws alone
Posted on Sunday, November 25, 2012 9:44 am
by John Ensslin

A majority of Bergen Beat readers oppose changes to the Bergen County Blue laws, which have banned retail shopping in the county on Sunday for the last 60 years.
 
In an unscientific poll taken between Nov. 19-24, 54 percent of the respondents said that law should be left alone because it protects their quality of life by limiting traffic one day each week.
 
Meanwhile, 44 percent favored scrapping the law, which they believe is antiquated and driving business out of the county.
 
Two percent of the 579 respondents said they had no strong opinion on the issue.
 
The issue resurfaced earlier this month when Gov. Chris Christie temporarily suspended the law for two Sundays to allow Bergen County residents who suffered damages from Superstorm Sandy to have some extra time to shop.
 
Thanks to everyone who took part in the poll.
« Last Edit: February 03, 2013, 05:36:28 PM by Editor »

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Blue Law Repeal?
« Reply #20 on: February 03, 2013, 10:34:22 AM »
Foes of Bergen County blue laws gear up again
Sunday, February 3, 2013    Last updated: Sunday February 3, 2013, 9:46 AM
BY  JOAN VERDON
STAFF WRITER
The Record

Bergen County's blue laws the rules that keep most of the county's stores closed on Sundays are being scrutinized for signs of weakness by groups that believe the time is right to repeal them.

Politicians have generally considered the blue laws to be invulnerable since 1993, when county residents voted, by a wide margin, to keep them in place. But recent attacks on the laws have caused opponents to question the need for them.

"These are 19th-century laws. Wake up. We're in the 21st century," said Rosemary Shashoua, a Westwood grandmother who has started a grass-roots campaign to repeal the blue laws.
__________________________________________________
The revolution will be digitized

While previous campaigns against the Bergen County blue laws were led by major retailers, malls and paid consultants, the latest attempt to challenge the no-Sunday shopping rules is being staged online through social media. Here are some of the digital battlefronts:
 
Facebook pages:
 
Keep Bergen Countys Blue Laws
This Facebook page was created in 2010, after Governor Christie proposed raising revenue by eliminating the blue laws. 1,675 likes
 
Modernize Bergen County, New Jersey: Repeal the Blue Laws
Created in August 2012 as part of a one-man campaign to eliminate the blue laws, it now is the Facebook page of the Modernize Bergen County movement. 228 likes
 
Change.org petitions:
 
Repeal the Blue Laws in Bergen County: 125 supporters
 
Bergen County Executive Kathleen A. Donovan Keep the Blue Laws: 41 supporters
 

Save Bergen County Blue Laws
:
(Launched after Hurricane Sandy, declared victory in November with 467 supporters after Governor Christie lifted the order suspending the blue laws.)
_________________________________________
 
Any attempt to eliminate the laws, however, will have to overcome strong opposition from residents of Paramus, and other Bergen County residents who say the Sunday laws have nothing to do with religion and everything to do with their right to have one weekend day free of traffic.

"As long as I am mayor I will continue to protect them," said Paramus Mayor Rich LaBarbiera. "They are the integral thread to our quality of life in Paramus."

Bergen County is the last county in the state to retain blue laws, which prohibit sales of certain goods on Sundays, and keep all of the county's department stores and malls closed, with the exception of mall restaurants and movie theaters. Paramus has even more restrictive laws that prohibit all work in the borough on Sunday.

In March 2010, Governor Christie said he planned to eliminate the Bergen blue laws to raise $65 million in additional tax revenue. He was persuaded by Bergen County lawmakers to drop that plan, but has indicated he might support legal action to allow Sunday shopping at the proposed American Dream mall in East Rutherford.

After superstorm Sandy left Bergen County residents with flooded homes and without power, Christie, at the request of County Executive Kathleen Donovan, signed an executive order suspending the blue laws. The order was upheld by a Bergen County Superior Court judge, over the protests of Paramus.

While that executive order only kept stores in Paramus and elsewhere in Bergen County open for one Sunday in November, it triggered Shashoua's effort to organize another blue laws referendum.

Unlike repeal campaigns in 1980 and 1993 that were backed financially by major retailers, and by The Record, the latest campaign hasn't attracted any such support. The campaign, called Modernize Bergen County, consists primarily of Shashoua, and Mitch Horn, a 32-year-old father from Hackensack.

Online offensive

Horn, who works in finance for Nestle, acknowledges that the campaign at this point may seem a bit like Don Quixote tilting at windmills, but he notes that his small group has a tool not available to the previous campaigns: social media.

The last referendum, Horn notes, "was before the rise of the Internet and the ability to communicate and network online." Think back to last spring, he said, "the Arab Spring, where just on a simple Facebook page people in Egypt were able to topple a government."

Horn said he understands the blue laws are a very emotional issue, especially in Paramus. "I would love it if there was a way we could change the story so that it's not really about the people of Paramus, but about the other 900,000 people who live in Bergen that don't have the same concerns as the residents of Paramus do," he said.

Horn created a Facebook page dedicated to eliminating the blue laws in August, after he had to drive to Hudson County for baby supplies on Sundays. "There were three weekends in a row where I found myself driving to Babies 'R' Us in Secaucus on a Sunday," he said.

Shashoua found his Facebook page and contacted Horn. Shashoua, 66, is a former resident of Long Island and California who moved to Bergen County with her husband about five years ago to be near her daughter. She is a veteran of previous citizens campaigns, including a successful fight to legalize mother-daughter apartments in the town of Islip on Long Island. She is a frequent letter-to-the-editor author on causes ranging from traffic signals to truck traffic on highways. One of her California campaigns was dubbed "Rosemary's baby" by the San Francisco Chronicle.

Shashoua has reached out to Bergen County politicians and retailers, but none of them has publicly endorsed the campaign. The group's first meeting, held at the Starbucks in downtown Westwood, drew only four people, but Shashoua is expecting more at a meeting scheduled for 9:30 a.m. today at the Starbucks on Essex Street in Hackensack.

While social media give the organizers a tool not available in past campaigns, it doesn't help them get over the biggest hurdle to getting a blue laws referendum on the ballot the need to collect signatures from registered voters. Organizers said they have been told that they need anywhere from 2,500 to 10,000 signatures to get a public question on the ballot. The number could actually be as high as 55,000, according to the Bergen County Clerk's Office. Referendums need 10 percent of the voters registered as of the last general election 551,745 were registered last November to place a question on the ballot. Those signatures have to be collected in person.

John Holub, president of the New Jersey Retail Merchants Association, said he has not been in touch with the repeal campaign organizers, but he believes the disappearance of the blue laws is inevitable.

Inevitable change?

"It's not a matter of if they'll repeal, it's just a matter of when," he said. "We are light-years away in public sentiment than we were 20 years ago."

Holub said there could be other options for removing the Bergen blue laws, such as state legislation to repeal them. The debate stirred up by Sandy, he believes, has caused a lot of people in Trenton and in Bergen County to question the laws. "I honestly do think this clearly is the beginning of a groundswell that will ultimately lead to the repeal," he said.

Paramus residents are the most vocal in support of the laws, saying they need one day a week when they can get out of their driveways, and travel through town without fighting off mall traffic. But retired state legislator Paul Contillo, who is credited for legislative amendments that made it harder to defeat the laws in past referendums, said there are a lot of retail workers in Bergen County who don't live in Paramus, but who like having Sundays off.

Bergen County lawmakers, he said, "hear from people in their own towns who work in Paramus," whenever the question of repealing the blue laws arises. And state officials, such as governors, consider Bergen County support crucial to winning elections.

Contillo, 83, has lived in Paramus since 1955. He saw the current laws established in the 1950s and has seen repeal referendums defeated twice. He thinks there is little chance of the laws being eliminated any time soon. The drift toward online shopping could eventually make the question moot, he said, "but for now there are so many good reasons to keep the blue laws."

Email: verdon@northjersey.com. Twitter: @JoanVerdon
« Last Edit: February 03, 2013, 05:36:11 PM by Editor »

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Re: Blue Law Repeal?
« Reply #21 on: August 26, 2013, 12:06:35 AM »
Report: Modernize Bergen County has enough signatures for Blue Law referendum
By  Myles Ma
NJ.com   
August 25, 2013 at 12:00 PM, updated August 25, 2013 at 12:03 PM


Cars parked at Garden State Plaza, Nov. 11, 2012, unremarkable except for their presence on a Sunday, when the mall is normally closed. An executive order allowed the mall to open on a Sunday after Hurricane Sandy.
Myles Ma/NJ.com

BERGEN COUNTY Modernize Bergen County has enough signatures to get a referendum on the November ballot to repeal the Blue Laws in Bergen County, Paramus Patch reported.

While voters defeated two other referendumsin 1980 and 1993to repeal the laws, Amy Margolin, a volunteer with the group, said this time would be different.

Modernize Bergen County will continue to add to its collection of 2,500 signatures before filing a petition for a referendum in September, Rosemary Shashoua, founder of the group, said.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2013, 12:08:11 AM by Editor »

Offline just watching

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Re: Blue law exceptions (Can sell on Sunday)
« Reply #22 on: August 26, 2013, 10:45:29 AM »
Nowadays everything is greed, greed, greed, and shop, shop, shop.  You've got Republicans who want to kill the blue laws for business purposes, and you got plenty of Democrats who want to kill them as a symbolic attack on religion.  Therefore, if it goes up for a Countywide vote, I'm very sad to say that the blue laws will be shot down.  Paramus will be left with its own local blue laws, and without the County backing them, the courts will probably strike them down.

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Re: Blue law exceptions (Can sell on Sunday)
« Reply #23 on: September 05, 2013, 10:26:51 PM »
2500 ballot signatures vs. 52,000 ballot signatures.  Big difference.  ???
______________________________________
Blue laws ballot initiative in question
Thursday September 5, 2013, 6:27 PM
BY  JOAN VERDON
STAFF WRITER
The Record

The small, grass-roots group that is seeking to eliminate the Bergen County blue laws believes it has enough signatures to get a repeal vote on the ballot in November, but the county clerk's office says they actually are at least 52,400 signatures short of the required amount.

The group, Modernize Bergen County, says it has collected 2,600 signatures on petitions calling for a vote on the laws that prohibit Sunday shopping in most Bergen County stores. The group plans to present them to the county clerk's office next Friday.

Since the small group of activists - led by a Westwood grandmother and a young father from Hackensack - began its campaign against the blue laws, it has operated on the belief that it needed a minimum of 2,500 signatures to get the question on the ballot, despite conflicting information. One of the organizers, Mitch Horn, said Thursday the group has been told by an attorney working with the campaign that 2,500 signatures is the correct amount.

However, County Clerk John S. Hogan said Thursday that a review of the requirements for ballot questions by his office and legal counsel shows that the group needs 55,000 signatures - a number equal to 10 percent of the voters registered to vote in the last general election.

The clerk's office also stated that requirement in February, in a Record article about the petition drive.

"We think we're on firm legal grounds" in requiring the 55,000 signatures, Hogan said. "If anyone challenges that, of course, the judge will have the final say." The deadline for submitting signatures for the November election is Sept. 20.

Horn said he wasn't sure who originally told the group that they needed 2,500 signatures. Organizers of the group, when they announced their campaign almost a year ago, said they had discussions with the county executive's office and other county officials.

A spokesperson for the county executive's office previously told The Record that 2,500 signatures was the required amount.

A search of state statutes by The Record turned up references to both amounts. Hogan said his office's statement is based on a full review of the laws, and amendments, as well as case law.

Modernize Bergen County volunteers have been collecting the signatures all spring and summer, at street fairs and outdoor event such as the Memorial Day street fair on Cedar Lane in Teaneck and the Fourth of July celebration at Foschini Park in Hackensack. The group, which usually attracts about half a dozen supporters at its meetings, says it is acting on its own, without the public backing of any politicians or business groups.

State and county politicians have considered the Bergen blue laws to be invulnerable since 1993, when county residents voted, by a wide margin, to keep them in place, despite a well-financed campaign backed by retailers and North Jersey businesses, including the parent company of The Record.

Talk of repealing the laws was revived after Superstorm Sandy left Bergen County residents with flooded homes and without power. County Executive Kathleen Donovan asked Governor Christie to issue an executive order suspending the blue laws. The order was upheld by a Bergen County Superior Court judge, over protests by the borough of Paramus. That executive order kept Bergen County malls and stores open for only one Sunday in November, but it triggered the formation of Modernize Bergen County.

Email: verdon@northjersey.com
- See more at: http://www.northjersey.com/news/222594561_Blue_laws_ballot_initiative_in_question.html?page=all#sthash.5JFvcGp3.dpuf

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Re: Blue law exceptions (Can sell on Sunday)
« Reply #24 on: September 06, 2013, 07:07:20 AM »
"Bergen County's Blue Laws are crucial to it's residents. Repealing them would make living in certain towns like Paramus unbearable. The Blue Laws also enable workers of certain industries a guaranteed day off to spend with their family and/or practice their religion without fear of losing their job due to availability."

Neighboring towns will also be affected by the increased traffic. Please sign the petition to Keep the Blue Laws:

http://www.change.org/petitions/bergen-county-executive-kathleen-a-donovan-keep-the-blue-laws-2?share_id=FbjKgnfLsH&utm_campaign=signature_receipt&utm_medium=email&utm_source=share_petition

2,500 vs 55,000

Blue Laws Ballot Question Faces Doubts
Clerk says anti-Blue Laws effort is short by thousands of needed signatures

Posted by Noah Cohen (Editor) , September 06, 2013 at 01:30 AM

The Bergen County Clerks Office says a group that announced last month it collected enough signatures to get a referendum to overturn the Blue Laws is actually thousands of signatures away from the amount required for a ballot question.

Modernize Bergen County, which opposes the countys Sunday shopping restrictions, said it had met the 2,500 required signatures for the November ballot. Clerk John Hogan, however, told northjersey.com Thursday that the group in fact needed 55,000 signatures.

Conflicting reports have emerged over how many signatures are needed, with differing numbers reportedly coming from officials, statutes and the groups attorney.

"We think we're on firm legal grounds, Hogan said in the report. If anyone challenges that, of course, the judge will have the final say.
Rosemary Shashoua, of Westwood, and fellow Modernize Bergen County members have been holding signature drives around the area with the belief they needed a minimum of 2,500 names for a ballot question.

Previous referendums to repeal the laws were defeated 192,394 to 157,648 in 1980 and 185,821 to 105,040 in 1993.

http://teaneck.patch.com/groups/bergen-county-news/p/blue-laws-ballot-question-faces-doubts



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Re: Blue law exceptions (Can sell on Sunday)
« Reply #25 on: October 29, 2013, 09:54:12 AM »
It's official: Blue Law question left off Bergen County ballots
Myles Ma/NJ.com By  Myles Ma/NJ.com   
on October 29, 2013 at 7:30 AM, updated October 29, 2013 at 7:42 AM


Amy Margolin, Mitchell T. Horn and Harry Chalfin, members of Modernize Bergen County, speak to reporters in Hackensack, Sept. 13, 2013. Myles Ma/NJ.com

BERGEN COUNTY Sample ballots for the Nov. 5 election have started arriving in Bergen County mailboxes.

The ballots won't include a question on whether to allow Sunday sales in Bergen County.

A petition to place the question on the ballot came up more than 50,000 signatures short, the group that organized the petition acknowledged Monday.

"We thought 2,706 was a sufficient amount of signatures to generate a referendum but according to the clerk, we need 54,479," Modernize Bergen County said in a media advisory sent from the email address of Mitchell Horn, one of the leaders of the group.

The county prohibits businesses from selling electronics, clothing, furniture and other goods on Sunday. Bergen is the only county to enforce the so-called Blue Laws.

The group argued that rescinding the Blue Laws would create jobs and make life more convenient for local families. But their interpretation of the law setting the required number of signatures for a referendum diverged sharply from that of Bergen County Clerk John S. Hogan.

The state statute says an initial attempt to allow Sunday sales only needs 2,500 signatures. But subsequent attempts need signatures from at least 10 percent of registered voters in the county.

While there have been two other referendums on Sunday salesin 1980 and 1993the Blue Law was rewritten in 1999, so Modernize Bergen County thought theirs would count as the first petition on the updated law, and so would only need 2,500 signatures. The clerk disagreed, arguing that it was the third petition, and that the 10 percent requirement stood.

Modernize Bergen County said it would either try to get the signature requirements lowered or aim for referendums in each town Either way would require changes to state law.

The group has also started the work of collecting more signatures toward the 54,579 it needs.

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Re: Blue law exceptions (Can sell on Sunday)
« Reply #26 on: November 24, 2013, 11:33:48 PM »
DeMarrais: Bergen County's blue law generally winked at
Sunday, November 24, 2013    Last updated: Sunday November 24, 2013, 10:54 AM
By KEVIN DEMARRAIS
RECORD COLUMNIST

Opponents of the Bergen County blue law that bans some Sunday shopping failed in their attempt to get a repeal measure on the ballot this year, so the law remains in place as the holiday shopping season gets under way.

But that doesnt mean you cant buy some restricted items on Sunday. As has been the case for the 50-plus years the law has been in effect, towns throughout the county put enforcement low on their priority list, and stores continue to sell items on the no-no list.

- See more at: http://www.northjersey.com/shopping/233195251_DeMarrais__Bergen_County_s_blue_law_is_full_of_loopholes_blue_law__generally__winked_at.html?page=all#sthash.TTZ7GJ5g.dpuf

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Re: Blue law exceptions (Can sell on Sunday)
« Reply #27 on: December 25, 2013, 11:13:59 PM »
Bergen County Blue Law won't stop Amazon Sunday delivery
Myles Ma/NJ.com  By  Myles Ma/NJ.com   
December 25, 2013 at 6:00 AM, updated December 25, 2013 at 6:20 AM

BERGEN COUNTY The Blue Laws in Bergen County wont stand in the way of a deal between Amazon and the U.S. Postal Service to deliver packages in the area on Sundays.

Mail delivery is considered an essential service, like police, fire or utility services, George Flood, a spokesman for the Postal Service, said.

Flood added that the Postal Service has delivered Priority Express Mail on Sundays for years, frequently during the holidays.

The bottom line is, its nothing new for us to deliver on Sundays, he said.

Mitchell T. Horn, one of the leaders of Modernize Bergen County, a grassroots group attempting to repeal the Blue Laws, said the deal gave Amazon an even bigger advantage over local businesses that must close on Sundays.

What this particular agreement does is it highlights to businesses in Bergen County that online sales are going to continue to be a bigger threat to their sustainability in the short term than they actually realize, Horn said.

A petition by Modernize Bergen County to place a repeal of the laws on the November ballot came up more than 50,000 signatures short. Horn said the group was weighing how to get that many signatures.

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Offline Homer Jones

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Re: Blue law exceptions (Can sell on Sunday)
« Reply #29 on: November 28, 2015, 01:54:11 PM »
Ol' Homer has always felt that like anything else in life, there is always room for compromise.
Depending on how the yearly calendar falls, there are usually four Sunday's between Thanksgiving and  Christmas. If stores were permitted to be open only between 10:00 AM and 6PM on those four Sundays, you are talking 8 hours per Sunday times 4 Sunday's for a total of 32 hours.
In deference to the residents of Paramus, homeowners aren't sitting in their backyards or lounging by their pools.Park utilization is at it's lowest and most people have their heat on and their windows closed.
Shoppers are already driving through Paramus to head to other counties to do their holiday shopping. Yes, there would be a net increase in traffic on Routes 4 and 17; but some of that  negativity would be offset by offering convenience to residents of Paramus and Bergen County.
Back in I believe it was 1976, the Record ran an article about what a traffic debacle it would be along River Street in Hackensack when Giants Stadium opened and the Giants had home games at The Stadium. Obviously that nightmare never came to pass.
Maybe the legislators could look into a referendum allowing Sunday shopping on only the  four Sunday's after Thanksgiving for only eight hours per Sunday for a trial period of let's say 3 years after which the cost / benefits could be analyzed and a rational decision be made to either continue, modify or terminate the experiment.
Just a thought.

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