A NEW JERSEY LAW THAT PROVIDES banks with limited protection from pollution liability has not sparked the anticipated burst of commercial and industrial lending. In fact, the state has not seen any significant increase at all.

The New Jersey Bankers Association says it's because Senate bill S 577, which was signed by Gov. Jim Florio May 7, was weakened by a related piece of legislation. S 1070, which was enacted on June 16, does not afford an explicit shield for banks.

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