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Senator Diane Allen

Allen Bill to Add Cyber Harassment to Domestic Violence Statutes Passes Senate Panel

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Legislation sponsored by Senator Diane Allen (R-Burlington) to include cyber-harassment in New Jersey’s domestic violence statutes was advanced by the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee.

Sen. Diane Allen’s legislation would add cyber-harassment to the state’s domestic violence statutes. (©iStock)

“When social media and other online sites are used to harass someone, it can be a real nightmare for the victims,” Senator Allen said. “Their tormentors can use these tools as a way to attack and humiliate them, often in very public ways. We need to extend our domestic violence laws to include cyber-harassment so people are protected from this kind of abuse.”

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Senator Anthony Bucco

Bucco Bill Requiring Additional Background Checks for All School Employees Heads to Senate Floor

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Bill mandates the currently unrequired Child Abuse Record Information (CARI) check for all public school employees.

The Senate Budget Committee has passed legislation sponsored by Senator Anthony Bucco (R-Morris) to subject all public school employees to a Child Abuse Record Information background check.

Sen. Anthony Bucco’s bill requires all public school employees, including contract workers such as bus drivers, to undergo a Child Abuse Record Information background check. (©iStock)

“It is appalling that New Jersey does not require background checks that red flag employees with substantiated claims of child abuse,” Senator Bucco said. “A standard criminal background check is simply not enough. Unless we mandate CARI checks for all job candidates and current employees at New Jersey’s public schools, we will fail to protect a number of innocent children from the horrors of child abuse. This dangerous oversight in state law must be corrected immediately.”

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Senator Diane Allen

Allen Bill Legalizing Telemedicine in New Jersey Passes Committee

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Legislation sponsored by Senator Diane Allen (R-Burlington) authorizing the use of telemedicine in New Jersey has been advanced by the Senate Health Committee.

Sen. Diane Allen’s legislation would authorize the use of telemedicine in New Jersey. (Flickr)

“Telemedicine is especially vital for patients who suffer from chronic illness, seniors who are homebound, and families who live in rural areas where they would have to travel very far to receive medical care,” Senator Allen said. “No one should have to choose between paying for groceries and traveling to see a doctor. By legalizing telemedicine, we can bring the cost of healthcare down and expand access to a variety of health services for millions of new patients.”

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Senator Jennifer Beck

Beck Introduces Resolution Opposing Naval Weapon Station Earle’s Effort to Rent On-Base Housing to General Public

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Senator Jennifer Beck (R-Monmouth) filed a Senate Resolution opposing the Department of Defense’s current proposal allowing members of the general public to utilize Naval Weapons Station Earle housing.

Sen. Jennifer Beck’s resolution opposes the Department of Defense’s proposal to allow members of the general public to utilize NWS Earle housing. (Google Maps)

“I am opposed, in the strongest possible terms, to the Navy’s plan allowing members of the general public to utilize Naval Weapons Earle housing. The current proposal is a dangerous one, and I will fight tirelessly against it,” said Beck. “The Department of Defense must abandon this proposal and ensure our area’s safety. This resolution serves to put the Department of Defense on notice that the residents of New Jersey do not want this risky plan put into place.”

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Senator Steve Oroho

Advanced: Oroho Bill to Allow 3rd Party Tests for Commercial Driver License

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Bill establishes a pilot program that will allow three third-party vendors to administer the test required to obtain a commercial driver license.

Legislation sponsored by Senator Steve Oroho (R-Sussex, Warren, Morris) to speed up the process of getting a commercial driver license by using private third-party vendors to administer the test was advanced by the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee.

Sen. Steve Oroho’s legislation would reduce wait times for CDL tests by establishing a pilot program to allow third-party vendors to administer the test. (Flickr)

“Drivers with commercial licenses are in huge demand, but New Jersey can’t keep up with new federal guidelines because our reliance on state-administered tests has created a massive backlog of people waiting to get their licenses,” Senator Oroho said. “This is a common sense solution to speed up the process and get these drivers to work.”

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Senator Jim Holzapfel

Holzapfel Bill Upping Criminal Penalties for Manufacturing, Dealing Fentanyl Clears Committee

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Criminal penalties for unlawfully manufacturing or distributing fentanyl – a prescription opioid found to be up to 50 times more powerful than heroin – would be doubled under legislation sponsored by Senator Jim Holzapfel (R-Ocean.) The bill, S-1026, has been advanced by the Senate Health Committee.

Sen. Jim Holzapfel’s bill would double criminal penalties for unlawfully manufacturing or fentanyl, a drug 50 times more powerful than heroin. (Wikimedia Commons)

“Fentanyl was first put on the market to help terminal patients cope with severe, end of life pain but now, officials are reporting that it’s in almost every pack of heroin found in Ocean County,” Senator Holzapfel said. “We have to do everything we can to deter criminals from dispensing or manufacturing this deadly drug. The penalties for committing these crimes must, at the very least, match those for dealing heroin or cocaine.”

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Senator Steve Oroho

Senate Panel Passes Oroho Resolution Calling for Congress to Pass Zika Funding

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A resolution sponsored by Senator Steve Oroho (R-Sussex, Warren, Morris) to urge Congress to act to fund efforts to fight the Zika virus was advanced by the Senate Health Committee.

A resolution sponsored by Sen. Steve Oroho urging congress to fully fund efforts to combat the Zika virus passed a Senate panel. (CDC/James Gathany)

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has determined that women infected with Zika during pregnancy are at risk of having children born with microcephaly and other severe birth defects. Oroho is asking for federal funding to be made available to fight the virus to help stop it from becoming rampant in the United States.

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Senator Mike Doherty

Doherty Bill Giving Local Towns Share of Fines from Tickets Issued by State Police Advances

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The Senate Transportation Committee has advanced legislation sponsored by Senator Mike Doherty (R-23) that would provide municipalities with a share of the motor vehicle fines collected through tickets issued by the State Police within their borders.

Sen. Mike Doherty’s bill would provide towns where violations occur with a share of motor vehicle fines from State Police issued tickets. (Flickr)

Currently, all motor vehicle fines, penalties and forfeiture moneys generated through those tickets issued by troopers are paid to the State Treasurer.

“When a local police officer issues a traffic ticket, the municipality collects half of the fine revenues to offset the cost of enforcement and running the local court where the ticket may be contested,” said Doherty. “An identical ticket issued by a state trooper may end up in the same courtroom, but the town doesn’t currently get a share of the fine to help cover expenses, putting the burden on property taxpayers. This legislation addresses that inequity.””

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Senator Kevin O'Toole

O’Toole Calls for Hearing on NJ Water Quality Following Release of National Report

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Following a report from a national environmental organization that drinking water in as many as 138 New Jersey municipalities may contain unsafe levels of the chemical compound chromium-6, Senator Kevin O’Toole (R-Essex, Bergen, Morris Passaic) is asking Senate Environment and Energy Committee Chair Robert Smith to schedule public hearings on water safety.

Sen. Kevin O’Toole calls for public hearings on water safety, following a report that drinking water in as many as 138 NJ towns may contain unsafe levels of certain chemicals. (Pixbay)

“Reports on water safety, such as the one that is making headlines today, have the potential to cause widespread panic and confusion among our residents. It is yet to be determined at what level hexavalent chromium in our drinking water poses a significant health risk to our population, but I certainly don’t want to sit on the sidelines and wait until that is determined,” Sen. O’Toole said. “That is why I have requested Chairman Smith to convene a special hearing with all stakeholders and experts on this matter.”

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Senator Bob Singer

In Wake of NJ & NYC Bombings, Singer Bill Would Require Law Enforcement to Develop Security Plans for Large Crowd Events

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In the wake of terror attacks in Elizabeth and Seaside Park, Senator Robert Singer (R-Monmouth, Ocean) will introduce legislation requiring local law enforcement to work with state agencies to develop security plans to preserve public safety during events that attract large crowds.

An explosive device was detonated in a trash can along the route of the Seaside Semper Five 5K in Seaside Park on September 17, 2016. (Twitter/Kathy Madsen)

“In 2003, my daughter Sarri was injured and 16 were killed when a terrorist with a bomb attacked the bus she was riding in Jerusalem, so I understand the lasting impact terrorism can have on innocent people and their families,” Senator Singer said. “Last weekend’s bombing in Seaside Park was a stark reminder that unless we enact proper security protocols here in New Jersey, we may be putting lives at risk. This bill will ensure that procedures are in place to keep residents and spectators safe at large events.”

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Senate Republican Solutions

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Tom Kean

District 21 - Republican Leader

Diane Allen

District 7

Kip Bateman

District 16

Jennifer Beck

District 11

Anthony Bucco

District 25

Gerald Cardinale

District 39

Michael Doherty

District 23

Jim Holzapfel

District 10

Joe Kyrillos

District 13

Kevin O'Toole

District 40

Steven Oroho

District 24

Joe Pennacchio

District 26

Robert Singer

District 30

Samuel Thompson

District 12

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