There is nothing good to say about New Jersey's pending Ivory Ban, S.2012/A.3128. It starts by citing every exaggeration and misrepresentation that the federal government and NGOs have spread about poaching and the US ivory market for months. It was introduced on May 8th and flew through both legislative houses before anyone who owns or works with ivory had a chance to react. Its key provisions are:
- Bans all ivory from any animal (elephant, hippo, mammoth, narwhal, walrus, whale, etc.)
- Makes it unlawful to import, sell, offer for sale, purchase, barter or possess with intent to sell any ivory or ivory product
- No exception for antiques
- Only allows conveyance to a legal beneficiary of an estate after death or in anticipation of death
- Reserves discretionary authority to New Jersey to allow ivory to change hands for "educational or scientific purposes"
- First Offense penalty - minimum $1000 fine or 2x total value of ivory, whichever is greater
- Second Offense penalty - minimum $5000 fine or 2x total value of ivory, whichever is greater
- Upon any conviction, the court shall order the seizure of all ivory, ivory products . . . involved in the violation for basing the value of the penalty. After sentencing, the court shall order the seized ivory transferred to the Department of Environmental Protection for proper disposition. The DEP, at its discretion, may destroy the ivory or donate it to a museum, university or research group.
This bill is all about criminalizing ivory without doing anything to fight ivory smuggling or stop elephant poaching. This ban has already passed the NJ Assembly and the NJ Senate. Only Governor Christie's signature is needed to make this law.
The Elephant Protection Association has already written to Governor Christie imploring him to stop the New Jersey Ivory Ban. Click Here to see our letter.
You can contact Governor Christie in any or all of the following ways:
- Send a message online at http://www.state.nj.us/governor/contact/
- Call him at 609-292-6000
- Write to Office of the Governor, PO Box 001, Trenton, NJ 08625
- E-mail him at Constituent.Relations@gov.state.nj.us