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Connors, Rumpf & Gove 9th District
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Contact: Jason Smith / (609) 693-6700
February 1, 2010
Connors, Rumpf & Gove Bill Authorizing Towns to Offer Free Beach Badges to Military Personnel Advances in Committee

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Legislation sponsored by Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove that would allow municipalities to provide free or reduced fee beach badges to active military and New Jersey National Guard personnel, as well as their spouses and children over the age of 12, was released today by the newly formed Senate Military and Veterans Affairs’ Committee.

The 9th District Lawmaker’s legislation (S-114) seeks to amend current law, which only authorized municipalities to provide free or reduced-price┬ábeach badges to persons 65 or older and certain disabled individuals. Existing law also provides that children under the age of 12 cannot be charged for beach badges.

“This measure offers a simple amendment to existing State law as to who can be offered free or reduced-priced beach badges should a town wish to do so,” said Senator Connors, who serves on the Senate Military and Veterans’ Affairs Committee. “Adding active duty veterans to the list of persons who can receive this courtesy is appropriate when considering the tremendous sacrifices they and their families make to safeguard our freedoms. With today’s committee action and bipartisan support, it’s my sincere hope this legislation will finally become law after years of advancing through committee only to never reach the Governor’s desk.”

Last Session, the Senate overwhelmingly approved the beach badge legislation, but no further action was taken in the Assembly. The 9th District Delegation initially introduced this legislation in May 2003 and has served as its primary sponsors in both Houses of the Legislature for the past four legislative sessions.

Assemblyman Rumpf went on to say, “While this may seem a mere technicality, it’s important to include Armed Services personnel in the actual State statute. This would be to prevent any legal challenge against a town that currently offers this courtesy, however unlikely that may seem. Simply stated, there are no potential drawbacks that should prevent this measure from quickly advancing through the Legislature.”

Under the Delegation’s measure, municipalities offering free or discounted beach badges would be required to track the number of persons who qualify for them.

“For any town interested in offering this courtesy, and more importantly for our Armed Forces personnel, it would make sense to move on this legislation before the summer vacation season starts,” said Assemblywoman Gove, a member of the Assembly Military and Veterans’ Affairs Committee. “In addition to showing gratitude to our Armed Forces personnel, some beach towns may want to use this opportunity to attract more vacationers. Either way, this legislation offers too many benefits to simply die in committee once again.”

Website Post:
http://www.senatenj.com/index.php/district9/connors-rumpf-gove-bill-authorizing-towns-to-offer-free-beach-badges-to-military-personnel-advances-in-committee/5277