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NJ Can Leave 1950-Era Waterfront Commission, According To SCOTUS

NJ Can Leave 1950-era Waterfront Commission, According to SCOTUS
After being sued by New York for trying to leave the Waterfront Commission, the Garden State received a unanimous decision from the supreme court in its favor. (Photo by

The State of New Jersey can leave the 1950-era Waterfront Commission, according to SCOTUS. – After being sued by New York for trying to leave the Waterfront Commission, the Garden State received a unanimous decision from the supreme court in its favor. In a statement released on Tuesday, Governor Phil Murphy expressed his delight at the court’s decision. My administration has relentlessly sought the abolition of the Waterfront Commission because it was the proper thing to do from the very beginning of our term in office, Murphy said.

NJ can withdraw from 1950s-era Waterfront Commission: SCOTUS

In the 1954 Academy Award-winning film “On the Waterfront,” which starred acting icon Marlon Brando as a teenage longshoreman attempting to battle corruption, the US Supreme Court ruled that NJ could unilaterally leave the Waterfront Commission, which it formed with NY in 1953 to combat mafia corruption on the docks. (Image via

He continued by saying that the Commission’s operations have been frustrating for many years. I’m happy that New Jersey’s sovereign right to run our ports has been upheld following a five-year judicial struggle in which my administration used every available legal strategy.

NJ can withdraw from 1950s-era Waterfront Commission: SCOTUS

View of Port Newark from Bayonne. N.J. The Waterfront Commission was under pressure from legislative leaders to support the state’s decision to leave the bi-state organization. (Image via

In a joint statement, New York Attorney General Letitia James and Governor Kathy Hochul expressed their disappointment with the choice.

What is the NY NJ Waterfront Commission?

After years of mafia control and thievery at the docks, as seen in the Marlon Brando movie “On the Waterfront”, the Waterfront Commission was established in 1953 through an agreement that lacked provisions for how and when to dissolve the body. The organization has been run by a commissioner from each state for 70 years. It once had a tiny staff that checked out new hiring of union labor and looked into possible criminal behavior at the docks.

In 2018, New Jersey started the procedure to try to leave the commission, claiming that the commission’s work was no longer necessary, that it was out of date and unable to handle 21st-century security challenges, that it hampered hiring, and that the New Jersey State Police could handle vetting and police work required on docks in the state. The two states have to come to an agreement on the terms of withdrawal, according to New York, who said that criminals continue to try to influence recruiting and operations at the ports.

For a very long time, the International Longshoremen’s Association has donated to the campaigns of New Jersey’s political candidates. Recent investigation from revealed that the union’s “Committee on Political Education” gave $100,000 and $40,000 earlier to a murky foundation connected to Murphy.

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Supreme Court hears NJ case to quit Waterfront Commission

The bi-state Waterfront Commission, which New Jersey founded with New York as a joint partner 70 years ago, is being disbanded. The agency, according to New Jersey officials, is overly regulated and ill-equipped to carry out its basic objective of combating organized crime and corruption. New York made a lot of effort to persuade the US. Supreme Court that New Jersey lacks the authority to just quit.

The judges appeared to be unconvinced by New York’s claims at oral arguments last month, and they spent the second half of the hearings asking New Jersey for advice on how to formulate an opinion in their favor.

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