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New Jersey Senate Republicans

Senator Joe Pennacchio
Senator Mike Doherty
Senator Sam Thompson
Senator Steve Oroho
Senator Tom Kean

Senate Republicans Propose School Funding Reforms to Improve Opportunities for Students, Provide Property Tax Relief for Families

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Proposals Eliminate Abuses, Establish More Equitable Funding for Overlooked Students in Underfunded Districts

In an effort to improve educational opportunities for New Jersey students and provide real property tax relief to overburdened families, New Jersey Senate Republicans released a series of school funding reform proposals as the starting point for discussions on the replacement of the state’s failed school funding system.

New Jersey Senate Republicans released a series of school funding reform proposals as the starting point for discussions on the replacement of the state’s failed school funding system. (©iStock)

“Senate Republicans want to fix the broken school funding formula that has failed too many students and devastated middle-class property taxpayers,” said Kean. “We’re ready to roll up our sleeves to negotiate a funding formula that works, and we’re prepared to come to the table with detailed solutions that we believe will improve educational opportunities statewide and make New Jersey more affordable.”

During his Budget Message last month, Governor Christie challenged the legislative leaders of both parties to join with him to work on a new funding formula to replace the School Funding Reform Act of 2008 (SFRA).

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Senator Steve Oroho

Oroho & Space Honor Sussex County Recovery Coaches, Local Law Enforcement for Efforts to Combat Addiction Crisis

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Senator Steven Oroho and Assemblyman Parker Space (both R-Sussex, Warren, Morris) released the following statement in commemoration of the First Anniversary of the establishment of the Sussex County Community Law Enforcement Addiction Recovery Program (CLEAR).

Senator Oroho and Assemblyman Space were in attendance at a press conference marking the first anniversary of the establishment at Sussex County CLEAR. The event was held on March 29, 2017 at the Newton Municipal Building in Newton, New Jersey.

Sen. Steven Oroho marked the first anniversary of the establishment of the Sussex County CLEAR program at a press conference in March 29, 2017 in Newton. (SenateNJ.com)

“Sussex County has not been immune to the opioid epidemic tearing apart families across New Jersey,” said Senator Oroho, who is a member of the Advisory Board for the Center for Prevention and Counseling. “There were 36 overdose deaths in our area last year. Sussex County CLEAR has been instrumental in responding to this growing crisis. Its success has given our community an immeasurable amount of hope during this difficult time.

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Senator Steve Oroho

Oroho Transportation Bill Aiding Property Taxpayers, Funding Critical Projects Now Law

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Legislation sponsored by Senator Steve Oroho (R-Sussex, Warren, Morris) designed to reduce the burden on property taxpayers and improve roads, bridges, and rail safety was signed today by Governor Chris Christie.

Sen. Steven Oroho’s legislation to reduce the burden on property taxpayers and improve roads, bridges and rail safety was signed into law by Gov. Chris Christie. (SenateNJ.com)

“With this legislation in place, we can now move forward on crucial transportation projects that are in need of attention without putting the burden on local property taxpayers,” Senator Oroho said. “The funding of our TTF is so important because a sound, well-maintained transportation infrastructure is key to our state’s economic vitality, it brings needed jobs and will continue to ensure the safety of the traveling public.”

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Senator Jennifer Beck

Beck Calls on Senate to Pass “Superstorm Sandy Homeowners Protection Act” to Protect Victims from Contractor Fraud

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Makes 6th Request for Bill to Be Considered Following New Report by APP Highlighting Gaps in Sandy Consumer Protections

Following an Asbury Park Press report highlighting the severe difficulties some victims of Superstorm Sandy have faced when dealing with home contractors, Senator Jennifer Beck (R-Monmouth) renewed her call for the New Jersey Senate to pass S-532, the “Superstorm Sandy Homeowners Protection Act.” Since the bill was introduced, Beck has made five written requests to legislative leaders, and more by email and in person, for the bill to advance.

Sen. Jennifer Beck’s “Superstorm Sandy Homeowners Protection Act” has awaited action by the Senate Budget & Appropriations Committee since June 16, 2016. (U.S. Air Force/Master Sgt. Mark C. Olsen)

Beck, the sponsor of the legislation, has prepared new letters to Senate President Stephen Sweeney and Senate Budget & Appropriations Committee Chairman Paul Sarlo requesting that a hearing be scheduled for S-532.

The “Superstorm Sandy Homeowners Protection Act” would allow the Department of Community Affairs to bar contractors who commit fraud from working in New Jersey and strip them of their licenses. It also would allow the Attorney General to sue on behalf of homeowners for negligence, when they currently can only act in criminal cases. Additionally, in instances where a homeowner was approved for a grant by the State and has made commitments based on that approval, S-532 requires the State to fund the grant even if they later realize the approval was issued in error.

“We’ve heard too many stories of predatory contractors walking away from unfinished Sandy recovery projects after getting paid, and of the State doing little to address complaints or prevent others from becoming new victims,” said Beck. “Sadly, the stories detailed by the Asbury Park Press mirror dozens of others that I’ve heard at the many public and private meetings I’ve held to provide assistance to Sandy victims. The ‘Superstorm Sandy Homeowners Protection Act’ was written based on my work with Sandy victims to prevent further harm, and to hold recovery contractors accountable for their work. I’m hopeful that we can continue working on a bipartisan basis in the New Jersey Senate to move these important protections forward.”

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District 9

Connors, Rumpf & Gove Call for Hearing on Their Domestic Violence Assessment Bill

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Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf, and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove have formally requested committee consideration of their legislation that would require the court to consider the results of a domestic violence assessment before dissolving a final restraining order when the defendant has two or more restraining orders against him.

Connors, Rumpf & Gove sponsor legislation requiring courts to consider the results of a domestic violence assessment before dissolving a final restraining order when the defendant has two or more restraining orders. (©iStock)

The 9th District delegation’s legislation, S-257/A-1149, would establish a “domestic violence assessment” as an assessment performed by a psychiatrist, licensed psychologist, licensed clinical social worker, or licensed professional counselor with the goal of determining the likelihood that the offender will commit future acts of violence, abuse, or other unacceptable behavior that could pose a threat to the victim, the victim’s family, the victim’s property, or other person identified as being at risk. The defendant would be responsible for the cost of the assessment, which would be considered confidential.

The delegation made the follow remarks on having their legislation posted for a public hearing:

“Despite the considerable efforts of law enforcement and social programs staffed by dedicated personnel, the sad reality is, as statistics clearly show, domestic violence is still pervasive in our society.

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Senator Jennifer Beck
Senator Joe Kyrillos
Senator Mike Doherty

Beck, Doherty, Kyrillos Condemn Democrats for Repeated Efforts to Block Sick Leave Reform

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Senate Republicans Jennifer Beck, Mike Doherty and Joe Kyrillos condemned the repeated efforts by Legislative Democrats to block Senate and Assembly Republican attempts to move bills limiting local sick leave payouts to protect property taxpayers.

Sens. Jennifer Beck, Mike Doherty, Joe Kyrillos condemned Legislative Democrats for continuing to block Senate and Assembly Republican efforts to pass sick leave reform. (SenateNJ.com)

An effort by Assemblywoman Nancy Munoz to move legislation (A-653) addressing six-figure sick leave payouts that some local government employees receive when they retire was blocked by Assembly Democrats during the March 16, 2017 Assembly voting session.

Senate Republicans Jennifer Beck, Mike Doherty and Joe Kyrillos also attempted to force a vote on their sick leave reform bills during the most recent Senate session on March 13. Senate Democrats blocked each of those efforts.

“It doesn’t make any sense to repeatedly block attempts to achieve sick leave reform, when both Democrats and Republicans sponsor legislation to do just that,” Senator Beck (R-Monmouth) said. “I am disappointed to see the majority party pass up another opportunity to provide property tax relief to our residents, by eliminating this billion-dollar expense hanging over their heads.”

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Senator Steve Oroho

Oroho Transportation Bill to Aide Property Taxpayers, Improve Safety Passed by Assembly

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Legislation sponsored by Senator Steve Oroho (R-Sussex, Warren, Morris) designed to reduce the burden on property taxpayers and improve roads, bridges and rail safety is headed to the Governor’s desk after it received final legislative passage.

A transportation-related bill sponsored by Sen. Steven Oroho to provide substantive property tax relief was passed by the New Jersey General Assembly. (SenateNJ.com)

“We have critical transportation projects throughout the state, including many in my legislative district, that need attention now,” Senator Oroho said. “This funding bill can get many of these projects moving forward without burdening local property taxpayers.”

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Senator Steve Oroho

Space Varsity Letter Bill, Co-Sponsored by Oroho, Heads to Governor’s Desk

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Legislation sponsored by Assemblyman Parker Space Senator Steve Oroho (both R-Sussex, Warren, Morris) to extend opportunities to earn varsity letters to high school students that participate in competitive activities other than athletics is headed to the Governor’s desk after it was passed by the New Jersey General Assembly.

Legislation sponsored by Assemblyman Parker Space and co-sponsored by Sen. Steve Oroho to expand opportunities for students to earn varsity letters was passed by the New Jersey General Assembly. (Wikimedia Commons)

“Extracurricular activities are an integral part of education,” said Space (R—Sussex, Warren, Morris). “The benefits of competing with schoolmates against peers from other schools – on the playing field or in the auditorium – cannot be overstated. A varsity letter is a source of pride earned through tireless effort, fierce determination and unwavering commitment. By opening the opportunity for a letter to more students, schools are strengthened and student outcomes are enhanced.”

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Senator Jennifer Beck

Beck Recognized for Efforts to Increase Domestic Violence Protections

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Senator Jennifer Beck (R-Monmouth) was today recognized by the New Jersey chapter of Moms Demand Action for her efforts to expand domestic violence protections under State law. Beck was a prime sponsor of a law inspired by Gabby Giffords to prevent domestic abusers from committing acts of gun violence.

Sen. Jennifer Beck was on March 23 recognized by Moms Demand Action for her support of S-2483 expanding protections for victims of domestic violence. Pictured: Beck testifies in support of her Sexual Assault Survivors Act at a committee hearing on the Act in Trenton, New Jersey. (SenateNJ.com)

“Enacting this landmark bill was an incredibly important effort, and a proud moment in my career,” Senator Beck said. “As a former Rape Crisis Advocate and a proponent of women’s rights I was happy to sponsor this legislation. I am hopeful that this law will significantly enhance protections for victims of domestic violence.”

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Senator Kip Bateman

Bateman Calls for Action as Drought Warning Continues

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Following recent reports that New Jersey’s drought is still in effect despite a winter full of precipitation and foul weather, Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman again called for the state’s residents and leaders to do whatever they can to help conserve water.

Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman urged residents and state leaders to find ways to conserve water as a drought continues. (Pixabay)

“Most of the state just spent the last week digging out of a big snowstorm, and the rest was no stranger to wet storms this winter, but it still doesn’t look like this drought is going anywhere anytime soon,” Senator Bateman (R-Mercer, Somerset, Middlesex, Hunterdon) said. “We all need to make an effort to conserve water and implement a statewide plan to address this drought.”

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Republican Senators

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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