North Jersey towns ordered to stop banning non-resident drivers
LEONIA — Efforts by two towns near major thoroughfares into New York will have to find a new way to help locals get around during high traffic times.
Attorney General Gurbir Grewal told a State Assembly committee that he has been in communication with officials in Leonia and Weehawken about their respective ordinances in recent months. Grewal said the actions taken by Leonia and Weehawken were in response to traffic apps like Google Maps and Waze directing drivers onto local roads on the way to the George Washington Bridge.
"We told them in March that they didn't have the authority to do that the way in which they did that," he said.
As the top law enforcement official for the Murphy administration Grewal also took his testimony as an opportunity to take a jab at the administration of former Gov. Chris Christie.
"Maybe I'll stay away from traffic jams at the bridge," he said in reference to the Bridgegate scandal.
Grewal said any efforts by towns to change traffic laws the way Leonia and Weehawken did has to be done in consultation with the Department of Transportation and the commissioner of that department.
During his testimony Grewal said both towns have agreed to "stand down on the enforcement," and added that they "wouldn't have the authority to stop people because it's not a lawful restriction." A lawsuit was also filed after Leonia enacted its traffic restriction ordinance.
He added that there are ongoing discussions to "come up with an appropriate fix."