Bill: State vehicles would be tracked by GPS
Few things anger New Jerseyans more than when they spot a New Jersey state employee in a state car doing things that are clearly not state business. But that could soon come to a stop under new legislation.
Assemblywoman Nancy Munoz (R-Summit) has introduced a bill to track the vehicles using GPS so that data could be collected in order to make sure they’re being used appropriately.
“When we see the cars doing things that we know are wrong, that’s when people really object and the main reason is these are taxpayer-funded cars and they cost us money,” Munoz said. “They are meant to be used for state business and for any other purpose, it is fraudulent and it is wrong.”
Under the legislation, which is co-sponsored by Assemblywoman Amy Handlin (R-Red Bank), a one-year pilot program would be established. The state treasurer would determine which state vehicles would be tracked and what the punishment would be for any state employee who is found to have used the vehicle inappropriately.
“We would be able to provide data that shows where the abuse is, where the illegal activities or the fraudulent use of the vehicles is and we could also find out there’s far less fraudulent activity than we suspect,” Munoz said.
Although the bill does not specifically state whether state employees assigned a state car would be informed if their vehicle is being tracked, the idea is to randomly attach GPS devices so the employee would not know whether his or her car has one or not.
At the conclusion of the one-year program, the state treasurer would also decide if it should be expanded, possibly to include every state vehicle.