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Legislation sponsored by Senator Jennifer Beck (R-Monmouth) to prohibit persons with DUI-related suspended or revoked licenses from operating NJ Transit trains passed the full Senate 38-0.
“It’s incomprehensible that state law allows a person who is prohibited from driving a car due to DUI-related issues to drive a train with hundreds of passengers,” said Beck. “NJ Transit operators are entrusted with safely transporting thousands of passengers a day. They have to be held accountable. If you cannot be trusted to drive a car, you shouldn’t be trusted to drive a train either.”
Senate Democrats blocked a motion by Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean at Thursday’s Senate session to allow a final vote to concur with the governor’s conditional veto recommendations on Port Authority reform legislation, S-708.
“I’m disappointed that Senate Democrats continue to block critical Port Authority reform despite knowing that adoption of the governor’s conditional veto recommendations represents the only path forward,” said Kean. “I’m particularly disappointed that none of my colleagues across the aisle supported the effort to complete Port Authority reform, despite broad bipartisan support for this effort to move forward.”
The New Jersey Senate passed two pieces of legislation sponsored by Senator Diane Allen (R-Burlington) to protect New Jersey’s military bases, particularly Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, by improving military-local government relations and positioning the state’s workforce to take advantage of job opportunities that the bases provide.
“It’s important for us to support our military installations, which have been an extremely valuable source of great jobs for thousands of families in New Jersey,” Senator Allen said. “However, we can do more than simply protect what we have now. Military bases provide us with tremendous opportunity to stimulate our economy if we can identify the needs of military-related private industry and help our workforce take advantage of those needs.”
The New Jersey Senate today passed legislation sponsored by Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman (R-Somerset, Mercer, Middlesex, Hunterdon) to permit counties to study replacing traditional paper poll books with electronic poll books during the 2017 election cycle.
“With high-profile elections fast approaching, it is critical that we do everything we can to prevent voter fraud,” Senator Bateman said. “We have all seen news coverage of long lines wrapping around polling stations across the country. In 2017, locations using paper records could struggle to keep up with a higher voter turnout, increasing the risk of fraud. Dozens of states use electronic poll books, often leading to shorter wait times and a reduction in voter fraud. It’s time for New Jersey to join the fold. With today’s Senate passage, we are one step closer to giving voters a faster, more efficient way to do their civic duty.”
Beck Introduces Legislation for Key Elements of TTF Renewal & Urges Residents to Sign “No Gas Tax” Petition
7-Year, $1.7 Billion Plan with NO Gas Tax Increase
Sign “No Gas Tax” Petition at SenateNJ.com/nogastax
Senator Jennifer Beck (R-11) and Americans for Prosperity-NJ held a State House press conference on Thursday and presented two key elements of Beck’s Transportation Trust Fund proposal that fully funds the TTF over seven years with no increase to the gas tax. Senator Beck urged members of the public to sign onto her petition against raising the regressive gas tax.
“This long-term plan can be supported by a modest state revenue growth, which is the average for the last six years, and with two key components: reining in employee health benefit costs and consolidating New Jersey’s separate transportation entities into one unit. To that end, I am introducing legislation today that aims to move State employee health benefits from their current ‘platinum’ levels to avoid the looming ‘Cadillac Tax’ on overly generous plans. Additionally, my legislation forms a task force to implement a consolidation of the State’s separate transportation agencies into one department.” Beck said.
Beck continued, “I have heard from the residents in my district loud and clear: New Jerseyans are seeking tax relief, not increased taxes. I urge all residents to sign my petition and register their voices to be heard.”
Senator Jennifer Beck (R-Monmouth) and Long Branch Mayor Adam Schneider announced that the New Jersey Department of Transportation has approved the Long Branch City Council’s application to designate the city as a “transit village.” Senator Beck, together with the Mayor and City Council, has fought to secure this designation for more than three years.
“With a bustling train station and the prestigious Monmouth Medical Center, Long Branch has enormous potential to become a thriving destination for commuters, new residents, tourists, and business owners,” Senator Beck said. “This designation paves the way for the city to become more pedestrian and bicyclist-friendly, with new businesses, improved parking, and a walkable downtown with abundant opportunities for shopping and community-building.”
MEDIA ADVISORY (5/26): Beck to Advance Key Elements of Her Transportation Trust Fund Proposal at Press Conference
7-Year Plan, No Gas Tax Increase
Senator Jennifer Beck (R-Monmouth) and members from New Jersey’s chapter of Americans for Prosperity will hold a press conference in Room 103 of the New Jersey State House on Thursday, May 26th, at 11 a.m. to discuss two key elements of her $1.6 billion Transportation Trust Fund (TTF) proposal that will allow its renewal for seven years without increasing the state’s gas tax.
WHO: Senator Jennifer Beck, Americans for Prosperity – NJ
WHAT: Press conference to advance key elements of her TTF proposal without raising the gas tax
WHEN: Thursday, May 26 at 11 a.m.
WHERE: New Jersey State House, Room 103 (across from Senate chambers)
Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean reiterated his call for votes on Port Authority reform legislation during the voting sessions in the Senate and General Assembly on May 26th, saying that the Democratic sponsors of conditionally vetoed legislation have agreed that we should move forward to adopt the governor’s recommendations.
“There’s bipartisan consensus that the Legislature should adopt my approach to Port Authority reform that’s represented in the governor’s conditional veto recommendations,” said Kean. “I urge Senate President Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Prieto to schedule the final legislative votes for tomorrow that are needed to enact these long-awaited Port Authority reforms.”
Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman and Assemblyman Reed Gusciora announced a new effort to combat the Institute of Advanced Study’s plans to construct housing on top of Maxwell Field, a National Historic Landmark and the site of George Washington’s 1777 victory against the British.
On Thursday, Senator Bateman and Assemblyman Gusciora will transmit a letter to the Institute renewing their request to discuss solutions to preserve Princeton Battlegrounds and enable IAS to build housing elsewhere. IAS has repeatedly rejected the legislators’ request for a meeting, prompting Bateman and Gusciora to go public with this week’s submission.
“The refusal to even grant a meeting proves that the Institute is determined to bury their head in the sand and continue to deny the irreparable impact this construction will have on the Princeton Battlegrounds and its irreplaceable historic resources,” Senator Bateman (R-Mercer, Somerset, Hunterdon, Middlesex) said. “Assemblyman Gusciora and I are ready and willing to discuss reasonable alternatives, but we will not stand in the shadows and allow the Institute to move blindly forward with these destructive plans. To do so would be a disservice to the residents, historians and activists who are fighting day and night to protect this hallowed ground.”
New bill would protect the New Jersey Business Action Center from being terminated under a new Governor’s administration
Senator Steven Oroho (R-Sussex, Morris, Warren) introduced legislation that makes the New Jersey Business Action Center a permanent component of the Department of State.
“The Business Action Center has played an important role in the progress we have made in transforming New Jersey into a more business-friendly state,” said Senator Oroho. “It makes sense to permanently establish it so private industry know they have a predictable, ready resource in government to go to for assistance.”