Measure Will Help Clean the Bay and Boost Local Economy
Senators Sean T. Kean (R-11) and Joe Kyrillos (R-13) praised the signing of legislation (A-2290) that creates strict new rules governing the sale, use and composition of fertilizer in New Jersey. The Monmouth County legislators, both co-sponsors of the measure, said that it was necessary to protect the Barnegat Bay, promote the health and welfare of state residents and boost the multi-billion dollar shore tourism economy.
“The overuse and misuse of fertilizer is literally killing the Barnegat Bay,” said Kean. “During storms, fertilizer is washed off lawns and into storm sewers that empty into the bay. Instead of green lawns, we get a bay that’s green and brown with algal blooms that kill off everything else. This legislation enacts some common-sense measures that will protect the Barnegat Bay and other waterways, without inconveniencing homeowners.”
Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove today hailed Governor Christie’s signing of three bills aimed at protecting the Barnegat Bay as a comprehensive effort to address one of the state’s leading environmental issues. The bills are as follows:
- A-2290: will establish standards for the application of fertilizer to limit the amount of nitrogen entering the Bay through stormwater runoff.
- A-2501: will require that soil which has been disturbed be restored to optimal conditions following any type of construction.
- A-3606: will require the Department of Transportation & the Department of the Treasury to conduct a study of all stormwater basins owned by the state in the Barnegat Bay watershed to identify which are malfunctioning, and to submit to the Governor and the Legislature a list of the malfunctioning basins prioritized to indicate the order in which they should be repaired and the estimated cost for each repair.
Each member of the 9th District Delegation was co-sponsor of the fertilizer legislation (A-2290) and compaction legislation (A-2501) and voted in favor of all three measures.
Senator Jennifer Beck, Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon and Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande are pleased to announce the award of Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Disaster Assistance funding to four District 12 towns as well as Monmouth and Mercer counties in order to help cover costs from the storm disasters of late 2009 and early 2010.
Last winter was the third wettest winter on record, and included the wettest December followed by the wettest March, according to the Office of the New Jersey State Climatologist at Rutgers University. The winter of 2009-2010 had three major snow events, which required snow removal and salting, and the spring of 2010 had days of rain on end, which brought about significant flooding throughout the area and both residential and government property sustained damage. This funding will reimburse these towns and counties for the costs associated such extreme weather.
In response to recommendations made by the Governor’s Higher Education Taskforce on modernizing and improving state colleges and universities, Senator Tom Kean, Jr. (R- Westfield) issued the following statement calling for immediate consideration of stalled toolkit reforms aimed at improving the affordability of higher education:
“The Higher Education Taskforce has released a detailed and comprehensive set of recommendations to one of the most important tasks before state government: improving the quality, accessibility, and competitiveness of our higher education system,” said Senator Kean. “Achieving many of the report’s recommendations are reliant upon several reforms proposed by Senate Republicans as part of the toolkit package that will increase autonomy of individual institutions and the accountability of administrators. My Republican colleagues asked that these bills be considered after months of delay during the Senate’s last voting session, but were rebuffed by the Majority.
State Senator Diane Allen (R- Burlington/Camden) issued the following statement regarding the report released by Governor Christie’s Higher Education Taskforce regarding the future of post-secondary education in New Jersey:
“Increasing access, quality, and affordability to higher education will result in more jobs and a stronger and more stable economy in New Jersey. Governor Kean was correct when he stated today that Chris Christie is the first Governor in some time to take the needs of our higher education system seriously. I applaud his efforts in assembling the Higher Education Task Force to conduct a thorough examination of how we bring our state colleges and universities into the 21st Century.
ICYMI: Courier-Post Pans Sarlo/Van Drew Move to Protect Corrupt Politicians from Witness Tampering Rules
Editorial: Don’t Limit Judges on ‘Hearsay’ Testimony
The following editorial was published in the Courier-Post on January 4, 2010:
When witnesses have been intimidated, judges should always have the power to decide on testimony.
While there are sentencing guidelines that lay out recommended minimum and maximum prison terms for certain federal and state crimes, in the end, judges have the option to see to it that in each unique case, the punishment fits the crime. Since no two crimes and the circumstances that surround them are exactly the same, we believe it is right for judges and, in death penalty cases, juries, to have discretion about sentencing.
Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean, Jr. (R- Westfield) issued the following statement in response to comments made by Senate Majority Leader Barbara Buono and Assembly Majority Leader Joe Cryan regarding pay to play reform:
“Any calls for pay to play reform cannot be considered serious or credible unless they include Republicans’ repeated proposals to establish a blanket pay to play ban that extends to everyone- including labor unions. Public employee unions receive among the largest state and local government contracts in existence, yet are allowed to spend freely on political campaigns and activities.
Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean, Jr. (R- Westfield) issued the following statement regarding Associate Supreme Court Justice Roberto Rivera-Soto’s announcement that he will not seek reappointment:
“Associate Justice Rivera-Soto deserves the thanks of a grateful state for his willingness to serve the people of New Jersey over the last seven years. His announcement, however, is a reminder of the urgency in holding a hearing on the stalled nomination of Anne Patterson to the Supreme Court. The Senate has a duty to offer advise and consent on the Governor’s nominations. That means hearings and an up or down vote, not delay and political posturing.
Editorial: Double Standard on Spending Cap
The following editorial was published in the Asbury Park Press on January 3, 2011:
Among the important pieces of legislation left on the table when our state senators and Assembly members adjourned for the holidays was one that builds upon the most noteworthy bill passed so far from Gov. Chris Christie’s “toolkit” package to address taxes and government spending.
The bill, sponsored by state Sen. Steven Oroho, R-Sussex, would extend the 2 percent cap on annual spending increases that municipal governments and school districts must adhere to beginning in 2011 to state government. With some exceptions, state government departments and agencies would not be allowed to increase their budgets by more than 2 percent from one year to the next.
Senator Jennifer Beck, Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon and Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande of the 12th Legislative District offer the following statement regarding this year’s December 26th blizzard:
“If last Sunday’s storm is any indicator, we can all agree that this winter promises to be a rough one. Monmouth County received more than two feet of snow in less than 24 hours and, unfortunately, snow removal and clearing efforts were not as efficient as we would have liked to see. There was clearly a disconnect in communication between the state, county and local governments. Many essential highways and roads took longer than expected to clear and some residents are still digging themselves out from beneath many feet of snow.