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Lt. Governor
Kim Guadagno
On November 3, 2009, the people of New Jersey elected Kim Guadagno as the first Lieutenant Governor in the state's history.
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New Jersey Department of State
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Division of Elections

In January 2014, Governor Christie signed into law P.L. 2013, c. 259. Pursuant to that statute the Department of State provides the following Laws and Regulations as a service to our users.  The Laws and Regulations displayed here have been copied from:

Please refer to the above links for the most recent changes.

NJSA Title 40A - Municipalities & Counties (Pertaining to Elections)
NJSA 40A:4-45.3a Referendum; when held, applicability

1. The provisions of any other law to the contrary notwithstanding, any referendum conducted by a municipality pursuant to subsection I. of section 3 of P.L.1976, c.68 (C.40A:4-45.3), for the purpose of requesting approval for increasing the municipal budget by more than 2.5% over the previous year's final appropriations, shall be held on the last Tuesday in the month of February of the year in which the proposed increase is to take effect. The municipal budget proposing such increase shall be introduced and approved in the manner otherwise provided in N.J.S.40A:4-5 at least 20 days prior to the date on which such referendum is to be held, and shall be published in the manner otherwise provided in N.J.S.40A:4-6 at least 12 days prior to said referendum date. Notice shall be published pursuant to section 7 of P.L.1953, c.211 (C.19:57-7) on the next day following the introduction of the budget. This section shall apply only to municipalities that operate on the January 1 to December 31 fiscal year.

L.1979,c.268,s.1; Amended 1981, c.66, s.1; 1991, c.75, s.21; 2004, c.74, s.4.

NJSA 40A:4-45.3a1. Provision of polling places; election worker compensation

1. Notwithstanding the provisions of Title 19 of the Revised Statutes to the contrary, referenda conducted by any municipality pursuant to subsection I. of section 3 of P.L.1976, c.68 (C.40A:4-45.3), for the purpose of increasing the municipal budget by more than 2.5% over the previous year's final appropriations, may be conducted with respect to the provision of polling places and the compensation of election workers in the same manner as is provided for school elections under Title 19 of the Revised Statutes.

L.1983,c.69,s.1; Amended 1995, c.279, s.45; 2004, c.74, s.5.

NJSA 40A:9-1.11. Definitions

As used in this act:

a. "Candidate" means any person who shall file, or cause to have filed, a petition of nomination for election, or for election, to any local elective office;

b. "Local Elective Office" means any office of a local unit regularly filled at an election by the voters, but does not mean any office established by the State Constitution;

c. "Local Unit" means a county or municipality, and, whenever an office is required to be filled by election from a district, ward or other subdivision means the district, ward or subdivision to which the office pertains;

d. "Resident" means a person having, within the territorial limits of the local unit, a place of abode, which has not been adopted for any mere special or temporary purpose, but is his ordinary and permanent domicile.

L.1980, c. 94, s. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1981.

NJSA 40A:9-167. Referendum on ordinance fixing salaries, wages or compensation

When the governing body of any municipality shall be required by petition to submit to the voters proposed increases in salaries, wages or compensation or if the governing body shall deem it advisable to have a referendum in respect to the salaries of its members, or any other elective official, or any managerial executive or confidential employee, the governing body shall adopt an ordinance definitely fixing such salaries and the operative date. Where any such ordinance provides for salary increases, they may be made to take effect on a specified date or apportioned to be effective on different specified dates during a period not to exceed 3 years. Any such ordinance may be adopted notwithstanding a prior referendum in respect to salaries, wages or compensation.

The clerk of the municipality shall forthwith forward a certified copy of the ordinance to the officer whose duty it is to prepare the ballots for the election, notifying such officer that there is to be a vote on the question.

Such officer, in the manner and form provided by law, shall place the question upon the ballot, to be used at the election in such municipality, in substantially the following form: "Shall the salaries of the (members of the governing body, other elective officials, managerial executives, confidential employees, as designated) of(name of municipality) be fixed as follows,(amount or amounts) per annum?"
If it is proposed to reduce or increase salaries, the following form shall be used: "Shall the salaries of the (members of the governing body, other elective officials, managerial executives, confidential employees, as designated) of (name of municipality) be reduced (or increased) as follows: (members of the governing body, other elective officials, managerial executives, confidential employees, as designated) $ from $ (amount of present salary) to $ (amount of proposed or adopted salary) per annum?"

If a majority of the legal voters of the municipality voting upon such question at the election shall vote "Yes," the salaries so adopted shall be payable to the members of the governing body or other elective officials or managerial executives or confidential employees, as the case may be, on and after the date specified in the ordinance and until again changed in the manner provided by law. The referendum vote shall be binding during the period of 2 years following such vote.

L.1971, c. 200, s. 1, eff. July 1, 1971. Amended by L.1976, c. 96, s. 2, eff. Sept. 21, 1976.

NJSA 40A:9-168. Petition for referendum on salaries, wages or compensation

If there shall be submitted to the governing body of any municipality a petition signed by not less than 10% of the registered voters of the municipality, requesting the submission to the legal voters of the municipality the question of fixing the salaries, wages or compensation of the members of the governing body or other elective officials, or any managerial executive or confidential employee of said municipality in the amounts stated in the petition, the governing body shall cause the question to be submitted to the legal voters of the municipality at the next general election occurring more than 40 days after the submission of the petition to the governing body.

The result of the vote shall be binding upon the municipality for the following 2 years.

Nothing contained in this section shall be deemed to preclude a referendum vote upon an ordinance increasing salaries, wages or compensation provided by law.

L.1971, c. 200, s. 1, eff. July 1, 1971. Amended by L.1976, c. 96, s. 3, eff. Sept. 21, 1976.

NJSA 40A:14-71. Nominating petitions

1. Candidates for membership on the board shall be nominated by verified petitions. Any such petition shall be in writing, addressed to the municipal clerk or the clerk of the board, as the case may be, stating that the signers thereof are qualified voters and residents in the district and requesting that the name of the candidate be placed on the official ballot. The petition shall state the residence of the candidate and certify his qualification for membership. The candidate's consent to his nomination shall be annexed to the petition and shall constitute his agreement to serve in the event of his election. The petition shall contain the name of only one candidate, but several petitions may nominate the same person. Each petition shall be signed by not less than 10 qualified voters and shall be filed at least 29 days before the date of the election.

Any form of a petition of nomination which is provided to candidates by the Secretary of State, the county clerk, or the municipal clerk shall contain the following notice: "Notice: All candidates are required by law to comply with the provisions of 'The New Jersey Campaign Contributions and Expenditures Reporting Act,' P.L.1973, c.83 (C.19:44A-1 et seq.). For further information please call (insert telephone number of the Election Law Enforcement Commission)."

If a petition is found to be defective, either in form or substance, the municipal clerk or the clerk of the board, as the case may be, shall forthwith notify the candidate to cause it to be corrected before the petition is given consideration.

A candidate shall be permitted to sign or circulate, or both sign and circulate, the petition required to nominate that candidate for membership on the board.

L.1971, c.197, s.1; amended 1973, c.235, s.1; 1985, c.288, s.2; 2009, c.286; 2010, c.68, s.7.

NJSA 40A:14-72. Annual fire district elections

An election shall be held annually on the third Saturday in February in each established fire district for the election of members of the board according to the expiration of terms. The initial election for a newly created fire district may take place on another date as a governing body may specify under N.J.S.40A:14-70, but the annual election thereafter shall be held on the third Saturday in February.

The place of the election shall be determined by the board and a notice thereof, and of the closing date for the filing with the clerk of the board of petitions of nomination for membership on the board, shall be published at least once in a newspaper circulating in the district, at least six weeks prior to the date fixed for the election. Fire districts located in the same municipality may combine the publication of their notices of election. For the purpose of this section, "notices of election" shall include the notices required to be published under section 7 of P.L.1953, c.211 (C.19:57-7).

The legal voters thereat shall determine the amount of money to be raised for the ensuing year and determine such other matters as may be required.

L.1971, c.197, s.1; amended 1973,c.25,s.1; 1973,c.235,s.2; 1985,c.288,s.3; 1994,c.181.

NJSA 40A:14-73. Form of ballot

The ballots shall be written or printed on opaque paper, uniform in size and quality.
Each ballot shall have at the top, a coupon, at least one inch wide extending across the ballot above a perforated line. The coupons shall be numbered consecutively. The coupon shall contain the following statements: "To be torn off by the Judge of Election" and "Fold to this line." Below the perforated line shall be printed or written, "Fire district election ballot," then the official designation of the fire district and polling place and date of the election. It shall bear the signature or facsimile signature of the municipal clerk, or the clerk of the board of fire commissioners, as the case may be. The heading shall be set apart from the body of the ballot by a marked-off space. In said space, the voters shall be instructed how to indicate their choice of candidates and the number to be voted upon as follows: "To vote for any person whose name appears on this ballot mark a cross (X), plus (+) or check ( ) in ink or pencil in the place or square at the left of the name of such person." Underneath these instructions shall be directions as to the number of candidates to be voted for and the name of each qualified candidate, without grouping, to be placed according to the alphabetical order of their surnames.
The ballot shall be substantially as follows:

No............ To be torn off by the Judge of Election.
Fold to this line.
.......................................................
FIRE DISTRICT ELECTION BALLOT
Fire District No. 1
Township of
Date.............
Polling District No. 1
To vote for any person whose name appears on this ballot mark a cross (X), plus (+) or check ( ) mark with ink or pencil in the place or square at the left of the name of such person.
For membership to Board of Fire Commissioners--
Full Term.
Vote for Two.
[ ] [ ]
[ ] [ ]
[ ] [ ]
For membership to Board of Fire Commissioners--
Unexpired One-Year Term.
Vote for One.
[ ] [ ]
[ ]

Using as much of the form as may be applicable to the current fire district election and extending the same to provide for cases not herein specified.

An election shall be held annually on the third Saturday in February in each established fire district for the election of members of the board according to the expiration of terms. The initial election for a newly created fire district may take place on another date as a governing body may specify under N.J.S.40A:14-70, but the annual election thereafter shall be held on the third Saturday in February. The place of the election shall be determined by the board and a notice thereof, and of the closing date for the filing with the clerk of the board of petitions of nomination for membership on the board, shall be published at least once in a newspaper circulating in the district, at least six weeks prior to the date fixed for the election. Fire districts located in the same municipality may combine the publication of their notices of election. For the purpose of this section, "notices of election" shall include the notices required to be published under section 7 of P.L.1953, c.211 (C.19:57-7).

The legal voters thereat shall determine the amount of money to be raised for the ensuing year and determine such other matters as may be required.

L.1971, c.197, s.1; amended 1994,c.77,s.20.

NJSA 40A:14-74. Elections; notice; publication; eligibility of voters

The municipal clerk or the clerk of the board of fire commissioners, as the case may be, shall cause a further notice of the holding of such election to be published at least once not later than 1 week prior thereto in a newspaper circulating in said fire district.

At least 7 days prior to the election the municipal clerk or the clerk of the board, as the case may be, shall obtain the registry list for the municipality or municipalities and election districts comprised within such fire district for the preceding general election. No person shall be permitted to vote at the election unless his name appears on the registry list or he shall have become of legal age and is otherwise qualified and shall file an application to vote with the clerk at least 2 days prior thereto.

L.1971, c. 197, s. 1, eff. July 1, 1971. Amended by L.1973, c. 25, s. 2, eff. Feb. 16, 1973.

NJSA 40A:14-75. Use of voting machines

The superintendent of elections of any county having a superintendent of elections or the county board of elections of any county not having a superintendent of elections, may upon application of the board of commissioners of any fire district, loan or rent to said board, one or more voting machines owned by the county, for a period of time which does not conflict with any State, county, municipal or school district election, for the purpose of conducting a fire district election as required by law. The loan or rental of a voting machine or machines for this purpose shall be upon such terms and conditions as may be determined by the board of chosen freeholders of the county.

In any case in which voting machines are made available for such purpose, the use thereof for any fire district election shall be held as provided herein.

L.1971, c. 197, s. 1, eff. July 1, 1971.

NJSA 40A:14-76. Polls; hours

Upon petition of 25 or more voters, filed with the clerk of the board at least 20 days prior to the date of any election, after the first election, the board of fire commissioners, by resolution, may divide the fire district into 2 or more polling places.

The polls for any election shall be opened between the hours of 2:00 and 9:00 P.M., but the board may designate a later closing hour on the same day. The board shall furnish the necessary books for the entries of the names and addresses of the voters.

L.1971, c. 197, s. 1, eff. July 1, 1971.

NJSA 40A:14-77. Manner of conducting elections

Before the opening of the polls a public proclamation shall be made by the chairman of the board or the clerk or his or their representative as to the purpose of the voting. Two tellers for each polling place shall be appointed by the chairman or clerk and thereupon the polls shall be opened and the balloting shall continue without recess until the closing of the polls. Immediately after the close of the polls the clerk and tellers shall forthwith canvass the vote and certify the results. The clerk shall publicly announce the results.

L.1971, c. 197, s. 1, eff. July 1, 1971.

NJSA 40A:14-78. Appropriation to be voted upon, form of question

Any appropriation or other matter to be voted upon at such election shall be in the form of a question, placed upon the ballot immediately following the names of the candidates for members of the board of fire commissioners, in substantially the following form:

(Question to be voted on) YES. NO.

The voter shall indicate his approval or opposition by making a cross (X), plus (+) or check ( ) mark in ink or pencil in the appropriate square.
L.1971, c.197, s.1; amended 1994,c.77,s.21.

NJSA 40A:14-78.1. Fire district budget; time of introduction; public hearing; notice

The fire commissioners of any fire district shall introduce and approve the annual budget not later than 60 days prior to the annual election held pursuant to N.J.S. 40A:14-72. The budget shall be introduced in writing at a meeting of the fire commissioners. Approval thereof shall constitute a first reading which may be by title, and the fire commissioners shall at that time fix the time and place for the holding of a public hearing upon the budget. Notice of the date, time, place and purpose of such public hearing, and of the time and place at which a copy of the approved budget shall be available to each person requesting it during the week preceding such public hearing, shall be advertised at least 10 days prior to such hearing in a newspaper having substantial circulation in the fire district.

L.1979, c. 453, s. 5.

NJSA 40A:14-78.2. Adoption of fire district budget; public hearing

No fire district budget shall be adopted until a public hearing has been held thereon and taxpayers of the district and all persons having an interest therein shall have been given an opportunity to present objections. Such hearing shall be held not less than 28 days after approval of the budget.

The public hearing shall be held at the time and place specified in the notice, but may be adjourned from time to time until the hearing is closed.


The budget shall be read at the public hearing in full, or it may be read by its title, if:

a. At least 1 week prior to the date of the hearing, a complete copy of the approved budget shall have been posted in such public place as notices are usually posted in the district, and is made available to each person requesting a copy during said week and during the public hearing; and,

b. The fire commissioners shall, by resolution passed by not less than a majority of the full membership, determine that the budget shall be read by its title and declare that the conditions set forth in subsection a. of this section have been met.

After closing the hearing, the fire commissioners may, by a vote of not less than a majority of the full membership, adopt the budget by title without amendments, or may approve amendments as provided in section 7. of this act.

L.1979, c. 453, s. 6.

NJSA 40A:16-14. Special election to fill vacancy in the office of mayor; limitation on authority to appoint

If a governing body shall fail to fill a vacancy in the office of mayor as provided in N.J.S. 40A:16-4a or 40A:16-5a within the 30-day period prescribed by N.J.S. 40A:16-11 or 40A:16-12, the municipal clerk shall forthwith fix the date for a special election to fill the vacancy to be held not less than 45 days nor more than 50 days after the expiration of the time fixed for the filling of the vacancy. If the date fixed for a special election shall fall within 20 days prior to the holding of any general election, regular municipal election or any other election within the municipality, the vacancy shall be filled at that election. If the date fixed for a special election shall fall within 20 days after the holding of any general election, regular municipal election or any other election within the municipality, then the special election to fill the vacancy shall be held not less than 20 days nor more than 25 days from the date of that election.

Notwithstanding the foregoing, if a vacancy in the office of mayor occurs in the final 6 months of the term of the mayor, no special election shall be held to fill the vacancy.

No appointment shall be made by a governing body to fill a vacancy occurring in the office of a mayor after the fixing of a date for a special election to fill the vacancy pursuant to this Section

L.1979, c. 83, s. 1, eff. April 26, 1979. Amended by L.1980, c. 93, s. 1, eff. Aug. 28, 1980.

NJSA 40A:16-15. Appointment pending election when person elected to office dies before commencement of term

If at any time after an election for the office of mayor or for a member of the governing body and before the time fixed for the commencement of the term of the office, the person elected to that office dies, the municipal committee of the political party of which the person elected was the nominee shall appoint another person to fill the position until the next regular municipal election. If the person elected was not the nominee of a political party, on or within 30 days after the time fixed for the commencement of the term of office, the governing body shall appoint a successor to fill the office until the next regular municipal election without regard to party.

L.1979, c.83, s.1;Amended 1980,c.93,s.2; 1993,c.341.

NJSA 40A:16-16. Special election when vacancy occurs pursuant to R.S. 19:3-25

Whenever the office of mayor or of member of the governing body shall be declared or deemed vacant pursuant to R.S. 19:3-25, the municipal clerk shall forthwith fix the date for a special election to fill that office for its term or unexpired term, as the case may be, to be held not less than 45 days nor more than 50 days from the date upon which the office was so declared or deemed to be vacant.

L.1979, c. 83, s. 1, eff. April 26, 1979. Amended by L.1980, c. 93, s. 3, eff. Aug. 28, 1980.

NJSA 40A:16-17. Special election when person elected to office becomes disqualified before commencement of term

If at any time after an election for the office of mayor or for a member of the governing body and before the time fixed for the commencement of the term of the office, it shall be determined that the person elected to that office shall no longer have the qualifications required for the office, the municipal clerk shall forthwith fix the date for a special election to fill the office for its term or unexpired term, as the case may be, to be held not less than 45 days nor more than 50 days from the date of such determination.

L.1979, c. 83, s. 1, eff. April 26, 1979. Amended by L.1980, c. 93, s. 4, eff. Aug. 28, 1980.

NJSA 40A:16-18. Notice of holding special election; contents

The municipal clerk upon the fixing of a date for the holding of a special election shall immediately cause to be published in a legal newspaper circulating within the municipality a notice setting forth the date of the special election, its purpose, and the date when the nomination of candidates for election shall be filed in the clerk's office.

L.1979, c. 83, s. 1, eff. April 26, 1979.

NJSA 40A:16-19. Nomination of successor to be elected at special election

The nomination of a successor to be elected at a special election as provided in N.J.S. 40A:16-14, 40A:16-15, 40A:16-16 and 40A:16-17 shall be made in the following manner:

a. In municipalities holding elections for municipal officers at the time of a general election, the municipal committees of the political parties in the municipality shall, no later than 15 days from the expiration of the time fixed in N.J.S. 40A:16-14 for the filling of a vacancy by appointment or from the happening of the events set forth in N.J.S. 40A:16-15, 40A:16-16 and 40A:16-17, select their candidates for election to the office, and file a statement of their selections with the municipal clerk. The statements so filed shall conform to the provisions of R.S. 19:13-20. Other candidates for election to such office shall be nominated by petition in the manner set forth in subsection b. of this Section.

b. In municipalities holding regular municipal elections, nomination shall be by petition in writing filed with the municipal clerk. The petition shall be signed by a number of the registered and qualified voters of the municipality if the successor is to be elected at large, or of the ward if the successor is to be elected from a ward, equal to at least 0.5% of the total number of votes cast in the municipality, or ward, as the case may be, at the last preceding general election at which members of the General Assembly were elected, but in no case shall such petition be signed by fewer than 25 such voters. The petition shall be filed with the municipal clerk no later than 15 days from the expiration of the time prescribed in N.J.S. 40A:16-14 for the filling of a vacancy by appointment or from the happening of the events set forth in N.J.S. 40A:16-15, 40A:16-16 and 40A:16-17. The municipal clerk shall forthwith examine the petition, and, if he finds it to be defective in any particular, he shall return the petition to the person nominated thereby setting forth his reasons in writing. Within 3 days after its return, the petition as corrected may be refiled with the municipal clerk.

L.1979, c. 83, s. 1, eff. April 26, 1979.L.1979, c. 83, s. 1, eff. April 26, 1979.

NJSA 40A:16-20. Nomination of successor to be elected at regular municipal or general election

The nomination of a successor to be elected at a regular municipal or general election shall be made in the manner provided in Title 19 of the Revised Statutes.

L.1979, c. 83, s. 1, eff. April 26, 1979.

NJSA 40A:60-2. Elected officers

a. The mayor shall be elected by the voters of the municipality at large and serve for a term of four years and until his successor shall have qualified.

b. (1) The council shall consist of six members, elected at large, and shall serve for a term of three years and until their successors shall have qualified. Their terms shall be arranged, by lot if necessary, so that the terms of two councilmen shall expire at the end of each year; and

(2) Notwithstanding the provisions set out in paragraph (1) above, a borough that has been divided into wards prior to the effective date of this act shall continue to be divided into wards for so long as the ordinance establishing the wards remains in effect.

c. There shall be held annually, at the time provided by law for holding general elections, an election for borough officers.

(Source: R.S. 40:87-1, R.S. 40:87-2 et seq., R.S. 40:87-9 and R.S. 40:87-14.)(Added by P.L. 1987, c.379, effective January 8, 1988.)

NJSA 40A:61-2. Elected Officers

a. (1) The mayor shall be elected by the voters of the city at large and serve for a term of four years and until his successor shall have qualified;

(2) Notwithstanding the provisions set out in paragraph (1) of subsection a. of this section, any city which elected its mayor for a two or three year term prior to the effective date of this act shall continue to elect its mayor for that term, until such time as the city has adopted by referendum of the voters the provisions of this act.

b. (1) The council shall consist of seven members; six shall be elected from two wards for staggered three year terms and one shall be elected at large for a four year term. The terms of the councilmen elected from wards shall be arranged, by lot if necessary, so that the terms of two councilmen, one from each ward, shall expire at the end of each year.

(2) Any city which, prior to the effective date of this act, had a council whose method of election, composition, or tenure of its membership differed in any way from the provisions of paragraph (1) of subsection b. of this section shall continue to be governed by those provisions which determined the council's method of election, composition or tenure of its membership prior to the effective date of this act, until such time as the city has adopted, by referendum of the voters, the provisions of this act.

c. No city shall elect any officers other than the mayor and council.

d. There shall be held annually, at the time provided by law for holding general elections an election for city officers.

(Source: R.S. 40:108-1.) L. 1987, c. 314, s. 1.