Gov. Christie and Democratic lawmakers found common ground Monday on a bill designed to help prevent drug-overdose deaths.
Christie, a former federal prosecutor, last fall conditionally vetoed a bill that would have protected illegal drug users from prosecution if they called 911 to report an overdose. In his veto message, the Republican governor said the so-called Good Samaritan bill did not take into account public safety or deterrence measures. He suggested that the Legislature instead have a committee study drug overdose deaths and reporting.
But on Monday, Christie revived the thrust of the Good Samaritan bill while taking action on a separate overdose-prevention measure. Christie suggested revisions to protect "witnesses and victims" of drug overdose from "arrest, charge, prosecution, conviction or revocation of parole or probation" for drug possession. But the law would not protect people engaging in drug trafficking or other serious crimes.