MORRIS COUNTY — Governor Murphy, Senate President Steve Sweeney, and Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin announced their support of legislation to change the term ‘freeholder’ to ‘commissioner’ in county governments across New Jersey.
In a joint statement, they said:
“As our nation tears down symbols of injustice, we must also tear down words we use in New Jersey that were born from racism. It’s past time for New Jersey to phase out the term ‘freeholder’ from our public discourse – a term coined when only white male landowners could hold public office.
This is not a matter of political correctness; it is a corrective action to replace an outdated designation that is rooted in institutional prejudice.”