Bucco Bill Ensuring Towns are Reimbursed for Educational Costs of Residents in Transitional Living Facilities is Now Law

Bipartisan legislation sponsored by Senator Anthony Bucco (R- Morris) that requires the state to reimburse towns for the educational costs of students who reside in a domestic violence shelter or transitional living facility for more than one year is now law.

The Senate concurred with Governor Christie’s recommendations on the underlying legislation (A-3164) in a unanimous vote on December 20, 2012.

An administrative law court’s decision in 2010 redefined a “homeless” family. Once that family lives within a school district for 12 consecutive months, the financial responsibility of any school age children in that family is that district’s responsibility.

“Sticking host municipalities with the bill for these students not only strains local budgets, it breeds resentment toward these facilities by the community,” said Senator Bucco. “This is a truly unique and narrow set of circumstances that requires the state to step in and remedy in the interest both of the taxpayers and the women and children that seek shelter in transitional housing facilities. I am pleased this law will now be in effect to protect taxpayers in the communities that provide living facilities to those most in need.”

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