New Jersey is finally among the many states with broad authority to develop or improve public projects through a Public Private Partnership (P3) delivery method. This contracting model has stimulated growth and improvements in other States and led to the delivery of projects that may not otherwise have happened. Senate Bill 865 (“S-865”), after undergoing some last-minute amendments in a frenzied legislature dealing with budget and other critical issues, has passed in both houses of the Legislature and is waiting Governor Murphy’s signature, which is expected shortly. The law will be effective 180 days from formal enactment. The administrative framework is now in place to make Public-Private Partnerships a reality in New Jersey.
S-865 sets forth the mechanism for Public-Private Partnerships for public building and highway infrastructure projects under the oversight of the Department of Treasury. Governor Christie conditionally vetoed similar legislation a few years ago, objecting to the prevailing wage and project labor agreement requirements, which are both included in S-865. And, unlike the prior short-lived P3 legislation in New Jersey, this version is not limited to State and County Colleges and does not contain a sunset provision.