'Snookiville' Law Aims to Give Towns Say Over TV Productions

Reality shows film throughout the state, including Manchester

Spurred by the filming of MTV shows throughout New Jersey in recent years, a bill to be introduced in the state Legislature "explicitly permits" municipalities to have a say in regulating productions. 

Dubbed the "Snookiville Law," the bill to be introduced by District 12 Republican Assemblyman Ronald S. Dancer would allow towns to license and regulate reality TV shows, like the "Snooki & JWoww" production that or the previous installments of "Jersey Shore" that filmed in and .

“The popularity of MTV’s 'Jersey Shore' and other reality shows can attract crowds to a community,” Dancer said in a news release. “That can be great for local businesses and a costly challenge to a town’s ability to control crowds and protect public safety." 

The bill would allow towns could adopt licensing ordinances and impose certain conditions on the production, such as requiring producers to ensure public safety by paying for an additional police presence, according to the release. 

"This will help local officials make sure that the attention reality stars like Snooki and JWoww bring to their town benefits local residents and businesses,” Dancer said in the release.

Manchester Mayor Michael Fressola said that so far, the "Snooki & JWoww" production has caused no issues in town. While the mayor said that he does not feel the state law is "totally necessary," he has no objection to it. 

"[Dancer] feels that in some communities there may be a need for it," Fressola said.

"The reality is these shows may cost taxpayers money by requiring additional services when cameras are rolling in town, and town leaders should have the option to license and regulate if deemed necessary,” Dancer said in the release.

But in Manchester, the police department has not been taxed by the production, Fressola said, as officers complete routine patrols through the area.

"To date, they've been very good neighbors," Fressola said. "I've heard nothing but good comments from the neighbors."

The borough administrator for Seaside Heights, where "Jersey Shore" filmed four of its six seasons since 2009, told the Asbury Park Press that he is uncertain if the legislation would usher in change, since towns already charge shows or work out agreements with producers.

A representative at Dancer's office said that once the bill is introduced, it could take anywhere from six months or longer for it to become law. 

Joseph Herbert September 16, 2012 at 04:33 PM
Just what we all need, regardless of all else, more regulations to stiffle or kill off jobs. I wonder if Dancer were a part-time politician and had to work for a living, if he'd continue trying to chase jobs out of New Jersey.
Face September 16, 2012 at 11:06 PM
@ Joseph...... Well said.
Marianne September 17, 2012 at 05:18 PM
I agree with Joseph. These shows work out deals with the communities and the politicians should stay out of it. Lots of new shows use "Jersey" to hook in viewers. Jersey is very popular and these politicians feel left out and just want some attention for themselves...
bojangles September 17, 2012 at 10:27 PM
Carroll Baszkowski September 18, 2012 at 04:45 PM
No problems in Manchester? That's because no one cares anymore about Snookie and she's not worth the trip to Manchester to catch a glimpse of her. Manchester has nothing to offer anyone, it's just a quite suburban town about 20 miles from the shore. Snookie's 15 mins. are waning, thankfully, as evidenced by the lost of interest in the show, causing it to be its last season. Her new show is guaranteed to be another instance of "jump the shark".


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