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New Jersey Transit PBA Local 304 v. New Jersey Transit Corp.

April 12, 2006

NEW JERSEY TRANSIT PBA LOCAL 304, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,
v.
NEW JERSEY TRANSIT CORPORATION, AND CHIEF JOSEPH C. BOBER, DEFENDANTS-RESPONDENTS.



On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division, Bergen County, C-141-03.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: RODRÍGUEZ, A. A., P.J.A.D.

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

APPROVED FOR PUBLICATION

Argued: September 12, 2005

Before Judges A. A. Rodríguez, Alley and Yannotti.

In this appeal, we hold that an annual medical examination program adopted by a law enforcement public employer for its police officer employees, which requires disclosure of medical history as well as blood and urine testing, does not violate Article 1, paragraph 7 of the New Jersey Constitution, or the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Such a uniform, non-discretionary program is less intrusive on the officer's legitimate expectation of privacy than the random drug and alcohol testing permitted by the Supreme Court in New Jersey Transit PBA Local 304 v. New Jersey Transit Corp., 151 N.J. 531 (1997), a case involving the same parties.

I.

New Jersey Transit PBA Local No. 304 (PBA), the collective bargaining representative and negotiating agent for police officers employed by the New Jersey Transit Corporation (NJT), appeals from the May 7, 2004 summary judgment dismissing its verified complaint against NJT.*fn1 The objective of PBA's lawsuit was to enjoin NJT's Police Chief, Joseph C. Bober, from "continuing to implement and enforce a medical examination program," which was compulsory for all NJT police officers. We affirm.

These are the salient facts. On January 16, 2003, Chief Bober issued Administrative Order No. A-03-005, which requires all NJT police personnel to submit to annual medical examinations during their birth date month. The annual medical examination was recommended by NJT's Director of Medical Services, Elizabeth Schneider, RN, MPS, MS. The purpose of the examination is to determine whether or not an officer is physically capable of performing his or her duties. According to Schneider, the examination "represents a basic physical as recommended by the American Medical Association." It consists of the following components:

1. Medical History

2. Complete Laboratory Work which includes: (Complete Blood Count with Differential; Super Smac which consists of Liver Function, Cardiac Profile and Electrolytes, PSA -- age appropriate)

3. Clinitex 10 urine drip stick

4. Pulmonary Function

5. Electrocardiogram

6. Drug and Alcohol Testing ...


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