No, Teaneck is NOT legalizing dog fighting…..

But we ARE working to clean up our code, which contains a lot of anachronistic, unconstitutional and irrelevant provisions.

This Monday, the Township will hear the first reading on Ordinances 32-2018 and 33-2018, which repeal  21 sections of the code.

Some of the sections being contemplated for removal are clearly unconstitutional (e.g. 26-17 not wearing clothing of the opposite sex or 26-22 using profane language), some are being removed because the State of NJ already has a statute covering the prohibited conduct and the town is not permitted to have it’s own rule (e.g. 26-8 prohibiting dogfighting, which is preempted by the stronger State felony ban on dog fighting), some are preempted by exclusion1 and some are up for removal just because people 60 years ago were scared of a lot of stuff corrupting the children (e.g. 26-13 ban on pinball2 and 5-16 kids dancing, a la footloose).

I have also listed for “council-listed” items, a discussion of re-codification of our code.

In order for residents and businesses to be expected to follow our laws, they need to be able to be read and understand what is prohibited.

As always, I’ll provide updates as they arise.

  1. see State v. Crawley holding that the clause (N.J.S.A. 2C:1-5(d)) prohibits enactment or enforcement of any local ordinance “conflicting with any … policy of this State … whether that policy be expressed by inclusion of a provision in the code or by exclusion of that subject from the code.”
  2. The NJ State Supreme Court held that Pinball Machines were “designed and purposefully constructed mechanical gaming devices to appeal to, induce, lure and encourage, the gaming instinct in the public generally and children particularly.”