Christie signs bail reform legislation into law

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie signed a bill into law on Monday that will reform the state’s bail system.

The legislative overhaul is designed to make it easier to jail violent offenders as they await trial and prevent non-violent offenders from spending months in jail throughout the judicial process because they cannot afford bail, Associated Press reports.

“Under these reforms, our justice system will be both more effective in protecting our communities from dangerous, violent repeat offenders and fairer to those nonviolent offenders who do not deserve to sit in what has become the equivalent of debtors prison because they can’t afford to post the bail,” Christie said, according to Associated Press.

Christie also highlighted the differences between his legislative accomplishments at the state level and the “dysfunctional mess” that he said Washington, D.C. has become.

“D.C. politicians spend weeks posturing and dithering while the important issues facing our country continue to fester, only to leave for summer recess and their campaign cycle, having done nothing for their constituents,” Christie said, according to Associated Press. “Meanwhile, here in New Jersey, we’re continuing to show that you can do things differently.”

New Jersey Assemblywoman Maria Rodriguez-Gregg (R-Evesham) applauded Christie for signing the bail reform legislation into law.

“Bail reform has been a long time coming,” Rodriguez-Gregg said, according to Associated Press. “For the last three years, victims rights groups, family advocates, police and prosecutors have been calling for these changes. This November, I urge all New Jerseyans to support changing our constitution to keep dangerous criminals off the street.”