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Senator Kip Bateman

Bateman Votes NO on Horizon Bill, Standing Up for Ratepayers

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Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman (R-16) voted against S-4, stating that it could pave the way for the government to raid Horizon’s reserve funds at the expense of the millions who rely on the insurer. His statement is as follows:

Sen. Kip Bateman voted no on the Horizon bill, stating that if a policy holder has overpaid in premiums, that money should go back into their pocket – not a slush fund for the government. (©iStock.com)

“Correct me if I’m wrong, but health insurance is expensive enough as it is already. If a policy holder has overpaid in premiums, that money should go back into their pocket – not into a slush fund for the government.

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Senator Anthony Bucco

Bucco to Vote Against Dems’ FY 2018 Budget Deal

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The following are Senate Republican Budget Officer Anthony Bucco’s remarks as prepared for delivery during today’s Senate session debate on the Democrats’ proposed Fiscal Year 2018 Budget. Senator Bucco, the ranking Republican member of the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee, plans to vote no.

Sen. Anthony Bucco, the ranking Republican on the Senate Budget Committee, stated that he will vote against the Democrats’ proposed FY 2018 budget, saying it is not in the best interest of the majority of NJ residents. (SenateNJ.com)

“Before I begin, I’d like to take a moment to pay tribute to my friend, Senator O’Toole and thank him for his years of service.

Senator – you have been an excellent resource for your fellow committee members and a true public servant. You will be missed. Thank you for all you have done for the people of New Jersey.

I think we can all agree that this was a very productive session. For that, I’d like to thank Chairman Sarlo, the committee, and all of the dedicated staffers involved in this process.

Governor Christie laid the foundation for a fiscally-responsible budget. There were no new taxes or major cuts in his plan, but there was still enough money left over to fund programs for those in need, and to make another record-high pension payment.

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Senator Steve Oroho

Oroho to Vote Against State Budget Citing Negative Impact on Local Schools

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Senator Steven Oroho (R-24), a member of the Senate Budget & Appropriations Committee, announced that he will vote against the FY18 New Jersey state budget due to the negative impact reductions in state education aid would have on local schools.

Sen. Steven Oroho will vote against the FY18 New Jersey state budget due to the negative impact reductions in state education aid would have on local schools. (SenateNJ.com)

“I cannot in good conscience vote for a state budget that would cut more than $1 million from our local schools in the 24th Legislative District,” said Oroho. “I worked with the Governor to restore $2.3 million of the cuts under the Democrats’ original plan, but I’m still not satisfied that the final budget represents school funding fairness or the best possible education policy.”

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District 9

Connors, Rumpf & Gove: If Horizon’s Surplus Is Excessive, Then Return Money to Policyholders, Not Trenton

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Responding to mounting complaints from irate constituents regarding pending legislation that would raid surplus Horizon Blue Cross/Blue Shield funds, Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove issued the following statement:

Connors, Rumpf & Gove expressed opposition to pending legislation that would raid surplus Horizon Blue Cross/Blue Shield funds in response to mounting complaints from irate constituents. (©iStock.com)

“If Trenton contends that Horizon Blue Cross/Blue Shield is maintaining too much surplus, then why not just send it back to policyholders?

“It’s because Trenton is not concerned about policyholders’ costs. There’s a different agenda at work.

“This isn’t about transparency or reform. It’s an egregious money grab, even by Trenton’s standards.

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Senator Joe Kyrillos

Kyrillos Applauds Supreme Court for Taking Up NJ Sports Betting Case

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Senator Joe Kyrillos (R-Monmouth) today applauded the U.S. Supreme Court for agreeing to hear arguments to legalize sports betting in New Jersey.

Sen. Joe Kyrillos applauds the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to hear arguments to legalize sports betting in New Jersey.  (Flickr)

On Tuesday, June 27, The U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear the appeal of a court decision that blocked New Jersey’s efforts to bring sports betting to its casinos and race tracks, including Monmouth Park.

Senator Kyrillos is the prime sponsor of legislation repealing prohibitions on sports wagering at racetracks and casinos, and a staunch advocate for New Jersey’s equine industry.

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Senator Jennifer Beck

Beck Concerned Bill Transferring NWS Earle Students Fails to Fix Property Tax Problem

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Offers Comprehensive Statewide Solution Eliminating Local Financial Burden for Educating Military Children

Senator Jennifer Beck (R-Monmouth) expressed concern that legislation (A-4453) transferring military-connected children living on Naval Weapons Station Earle from one school district to another fails to address the underlying problem of how to fairly fund the education of children living on military bases across New Jersey.

Sen. Jennifer Beck urged her colleagues to consider her legislation providing additional State aid to all school districts for the military-connected students they serve. (Google Maps)

“I’ve opposed this legislation because it is too narrowly focused and doesn’t represent a real funding solution for all of the host communities across the state that bear the responsibility of educating the children living on New Jersey’s military bases,” said Beck. “The issue at Earle is part of a much broader property tax problem that impacts all of the communities surrounding the military installations across the state. All of those communities that provide services to support our military families deserve additional property tax relief.”

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Senator Jennifer Beck

Beck’s Legislation to Remove Firearms When Threat Exists Blocked by Senate Democrats Again

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Senate Democrats blocked a second attempt by Senator Jennifer Beck (R-Monmouth) to move legislation (S-2615) she sponsors which requires the seizure of firearms when a mental health professional determines a patient poses a threat of harm to themselves or others.

Senate Democrats blocked a second attempt by Sen. Jennifer Beck to move legislation she sponsors which requires the seizure of firearms when a mental health professional determines a patient poses a threat of harm to themselves or others. (SenateNJ.com)

“Time after time, we’ve heard that the perpetrators of horrible acts of violence, like James Holmes in Aurora and Adam Lanza in Newtown, had serious, known mental health issues,” said Beck. “Still, despite long histories of mental illness, they were able to obtain the firearms used to assault and kill others. Those crimes illustrate a clear gap in the law that needs to be closed to prevent similar tragedies from occurring here in New Jersey.”

A motion by Beck to relieve her bill from committee for consideration by the Senate was tabled by Senate Democrats during today’s Senate session in a 21-11 vote.

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Senator Jennifer Beck

Senate Democrats Block Beck’s Bill to Protect Victims of Gender-Based Wage Discrimination

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New Jersey Senate Democrats blocked the consideration of legislation sponsored by Senator Jennifer Beck (R-Monmouth) that would offer financial protections to the victims of gender-based wage discrimination.

Senate Democrats voted to table Sen. Jennifer Beck’s legislation offering financial protections to the victims of gender-based wage discrimination. (SenateNJ.com)

Beck attempted to move her legislation, S-2458, that would protect from taxation any awards or settlements related to claims of unlawful gender-based wage discrimination.

“New Jersey has one of the most aggressive, progressive wage discrimination statutes in the nation,” said Beck. “When such discrimination has been resolved, either through a trial or settlement agreement, our State furthers the victim’s mistreatment through aggressive income taxation of damages that have been awarded. I’m disappointed that Senate Democrats voted against the interests of women today.”

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Senator Steve Oroho

Senate Passes Oroho’s ‘Ralph & David’s Law’ to Up Penalties for Drunk Drivers Who Kill

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The New Jersey Senate has passed bipartisan legislation sponsored by Senator Steven Oroho (R-24) to update the state’s vehicular homicide statutes to increase penalties for deaths caused by drivers who are intoxicated or under the influence of drugs.

Sen. Steven Oroho’s bipartisan “Ralph and David’s Law” establishes harsher punishments for drunk drivers who cause a fatality. (Flickr)

“Ralph and David’s Law” is named in honor of David Heim and Ralph Politi, Jr., innocent victims who lost their lives to drunk drivers.

“The pain of losing a loved one to a drunk driver never goes away. Families never get to walk away from that tragedy, but when a drunk driver does, and only gets a slap on the wrist, it acts as a double tragedy,” Senator Oroho said. “Harsher punishments can act as a deterrent and ensure that reckless drunk drivers who kill receive a punishment that reflects the magnitude of their crime.”

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Senator Steve Oroho

Oroho Bill to Remove Age Restriction for Testifying Via CCTV in Sex Crime Cases Passes Senate

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The New Jersey Senate has passed legislation sponsored by Senator Steven Oroho (R-Sussex, Warren, Morris) to expand protections for survivors and witnesses, by removing the age restriction for testifying via closed circuit television in certain sex crime, domestic violence, and child abuse cases.

Sen. Steven Oroho’s bill would expand protections for survivors and witnesses, by removing the age restriction to testify via closed-circuit-television, also known as CCTV. (©iStock)

Currently, only those 16-years-of-age or younger are permitted to testify via CCTV.

“It is unconscionable to force someone to confront a violent criminal face-to-face when we know that this will only increase their pain. They shouldn’t have to live with that trauma or cope with a constant fear of retribution,” Senator Oroho said. “No one should be blocked from testifying via closed-circuit television, just because of their age. All survivors and witnesses should be treated with compassion and respect in a court room.”

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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

Steven Oroho

District 24

Joe Pennacchio

District 26

Robert Singer

District 30

Samuel Thompson

District 12

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