On Saturday, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie will speak at the NAACP New Jersey State Convention membership luncheon in Parsippany. Among the many topics to be addressed is bail bond reform, an issue that will be up for vote on November 4th.
At stake is an amendment (SCR128) that would allow judges to deny bail to offenders who pose a threat to safety, a flight risk or could obstruct justice. Christie also supports a constitutional amendment (S946) that would create non-monetary alternatives for pre-trial release, along with risk assessment system, so that lower-level offenders don’t have to sit in jail for months as they await trial because they can’t make bail.
According to Christie, new bail bond laws could prevent jails from becoming “debtor’s prisons”. Christie has said the old system often keeps people in jail awaiting trial for more than 10 months when they can’t post bail of a few hundred dollars.