Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman, sponsor of a constitutional amendment to establish a long-term funding source for open space preservation, issued the following statement after the measure, SCR84/ACR130, was passed by the full Assembly today.
“This marks an important day for the future of New Jersey as voters now have the opportunity to make sure there is a stable funding source to protect lands that guard against flooding and water contamination and preserve open spaces important to the natural beauty of their communities,” said Bateman (R-Somerset, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex). “New Jersey has a long history of preservation and by dedicating just a small percentage of corporate business taxes we can guarantee those efforts will continue long into the future without adding any burden on taxpayers. With a sustainable funding source for Blue Acres programs the state will be better equipped to protect homeowners and businesses in areas prone to flooding like Manville. It took a lot of effort to get to this point but the overwhelming support in the Senate and Assembly show this was a solution well worth fighting for. I thank all of those who contributed to the discussion and helped push this measure forward.”
State Senator Jennifer Beck today issued the following statement concerning the Central American children who are fleeing their violent countries to seek safe haven here in the United States. Casa Freehold director, Rita Dentino, recently reported that between 5-10 unaccompanied minors are now residing in Freehold Borough with a possible 1,500 already placed in New Jersey. The U.S. House of Representatives $694 million to house and process the surge of children detained at the border.
“This is an issue with far ranging implications that is being experienced all across the country. I am working closely with federal representatives and the Governor’s Office to fully understand our legal options and obligations. I am hopeful that money will come from the federal government as part of an overall response to this issue. There are real humanitarian, fiscal and capacity concerns so all decisions must be fully vetted. I will continue to communicate openly with local officials to keep all appraised of our progress.”
Senators Jennifer Beck (R-Monmouth) and Mike Doherty (R-Hunterdon, Somerset, Warren) introduced legislation to save cats and dogs no longer used for educational, research or scientific purposes from automatic death sentences.
The Senators’ bill, S-2344, would require institutions of higher education and research facilities to offer cats and dogs to animal rescue organizations for adoption prior to euthanizing the animals.
“All cats and dogs should have every possible opportunity to be a part of a loving home, and rescued animals make for the best family members and companions,” Beck said. “Cats and dogs shouldn’t be sentenced to death at the end of an experiment or project. Their lives should be respected and cherished from beginning to end.”
State Legislators Say That Although Senator Is Late to the Table on Flood Insurance Problems, They Welcome His Help
Senator Jennifer Beck and Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon responded to a NorthJersey.com article in which U.S. Senator Robert Menendez acknowledges that the flood insurance system is “is stacked against policyholders.”
“Hundreds if not thousands of New Jersey Sandy survivors have been low-balled by NFIP,” Beck (R-Monmouth) said. “Homeowners paid premiums in good faith for decades only to find that the $250,000 limit is a farce. Many families are not back home because the flood insurance payouts were not even vaguely comparable to their home’s structural damage. I and others have been part of an outcry against the NFIP and while the Senator is 18 months late to the issue, we welcome the opportunity to work with him to fix it. It is nearly criminal what NFIP has done to our residents – the program is dysfunctional and must be repaired.”
Senator Kevin O’Toole and Assemblymen David Russo and Scott Rumana (all R-40) have introduced legislation to create the “Christopher Goodell Memorial Highway” along State Route 17 in Waldwick in memory of the fallen hero.
“The profound sadness shared by people all across District 40 has not mitigated since this senseless tragedy, since we all lost a true local hero and his family lost their beloved son,” O’Toole said. “This act can instill the lasting honor that Christopher deserves in memory of his selfless service and sacrifices for us all.”
Singer Proposes Amendments to Legislation Reforming Law Permitting Establishment of Employer Managed Health Benefits Programs
Senator Robert Singer, the sponsor of legislation making changes to the law permitting self –funded Multiple Employer Welfare Arrangements (“MEWAs”), today announced a series of amendments he intends to make to the bill to address concerns that have been raised by interested parties since the bill was first introduced and passed unanimously (79-0) by the General Assembly.
MEWAs are an alternative to traditional commercial insurance that permits employers, especially small- and mid-sized businesses, to band together to obtain economies of scale to help them reduce their health insurance costs and provide a greater range of health benefits to their employees. Senator Singer’s legislation, S2220, is intended to promote the availability of health care by strengthening the ability of MEWAs to compete with traditional health insurance carriers and self insured entities to provide those benefits at a reasonable cost.
Senator Jennifer Beck (R-11) will once again have a table at Red Bank’s National Night Out Against Crime on Tuesday, August 5th.
“I’ve been involved in Red Bank’s National Night out for years, and each year it gets bigger,” Beck said. “We’re really looking forward to talking to folks in the community to help promote a positive relationship with the police here in town.”
Senator Steve Oroho, Assemblywoman Alison Littell McHose and Assemblyman Parker Space (R-24) released the following statement after meeting with Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno following the Lt. Governor’s visit to Swartswood State Park to highlight Sussex County’s varied tourism industries.
Lt. Governor Guadagno visited the park as part of her series of “Tourism Tuesday” visits across the state. Swartswood State Park was the first state park established in New Jersey.
Senator Jennifer Beck (R-11) issued the following statement in support of the “Stand With Israel” solidarity rally held at the Axelrod Performing Arts Center and hosted by the Jewish Federation on July 28, 2014:
“The violence occurring in that region of the world today is truly horrifying. We should all be encouraging both sides to agree to a ceasefire and find a peaceful solution to these age-old disagreements. Violence is not the answer and the longer it persists the further we get from peaceful resolution.
Senator Gerald Cardinale (R-Bergen, Passaic) today urged action on legislation ending abusive sick leave payouts, following news that Bayonne taxpayers are on the hook for a $444,450 payout to the retiring police chief.
“This morning, I would expect my honorable colleague Senator Cunningham to lead us in storming the State House to finally end this abuse of property tax dollars for all New Jerseyans,” said Cardinale, who with Democratic Senator Brian Stack sponsors Senate bill 79 to eliminate sick-leave payouts and limit comp-time payouts. “On behalf of our constituents, I’m issuing an urgent request for Senate President Sweeney to allow a vote on complete reform once and for all.”