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District 9

Committee Advances Connors-Rumpf-Gove Veterans’ Surviving Spouse Benefit Bill

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The Senate Military and Veterans’ Affairs Committee voted to approve legislation sponsored by Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove which would require the $750 annual compensation to surviving spouses of certain blind or disabled veterans to be payable from the date of the veteran’s death. Members of the 9th District delegation serve on the Military and Veterans’ Affairs Committees of both houses.

A Senate committee approved a bill sponsored by Connors, Rumpf and Gove requiring the $750 annual compensation to surviving spouses of certain blind or disabled veterans to be payable from the date of the veteran’s death. (©iStock)

Under the 9th District delegation’s legislation (S-898), payments to a surviving spouse would be due from April 9, 1985, in the event the veteran’s death occurred prior to that date, or the date of the veteran’s death if the death occurred after April 9, 1985, regardless of the date of the surviving spouse’s application.

Connors, Rumpf and Gove issued the following statement on the Committee’s release of their veterans’ initiative:

“Veterans’ services remain among the most important issues to our constituency, a large segment of which are veterans themselves or have a veteran family member. This legislative proposal is the result of hardship cases we were informed of in which spouses didn’t become aware of the benefit until long after they became eligible. Given the extenuating circumstances, which includes their spouses’ service to our nation, these individuals should be entitled to the monetary compensation dating back to their eligibility date.

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Senator Tom Kean

Kean Moves to Support Jersey-Based Creators & National Funding for the Arts

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Legislation Would Create Artist District Designations; Support the National Endowment for the Arts

The Senate State Government Committee has passed two pieces of legislation sponsored by Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean to support artists in New Jersey and across the country.

NJ Senate Committee passes Sen. Tom Kean’s legislation to support artists in New Jersey and across the country. (Pixabay)

The first bill, S-521, would establish a special designation that municipalities can use to promote Jersey-based artists living and working in that community.

“The Garden State is blessed with a number of vibrant downtowns where local artists thrive,” Senator Kean (R-21) said. “Jersey-based artists generate local jobs. Nurturing and promoting active artist districts will stimulate economic growth, create educational opportunities, and help our local tourist destinations become even more widely-known.”

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Senator Kristin Corrado

Corrado, Singleton Bill to Help NJ Veterans Find Careers Passes Committee

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The Senate Military and Veteran Affairs Committee has passed bipartisan legislation sponsored by Senator Kristin Corrado (R-40) and Senator Troy Singleton (D- 7) that would create a Military Veteran Career Transition Program. The bill would provide job placement and coaching for veterans statewide.

NJ Senate Committee has passed Sen. Kristin Corrado’s bipartisan bill that would create a Military Veteran Career Transition Program. (WikiCommons)

“The gap between military life and civilian employment can leave our veterans feeling frustrated. It’s time to bridge that gap,” Sen. Kristin Corrado said. “Veterans gain an abundance of experience throughout the course of their service to our country. They have skills that are an asset to a wide variety of employers and industries. The creation of a veteran transition program can provide services members with opportunities that will match their skill sets with job openings in their area.”

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Senator Mike Doherty

Doherty Opposes Effort to Inject Identity Politics Into School Textbooks

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Says Ridiculous State Mandates Dilute Ability of Schools to Teach Fundamentals

During today’s meeting of the Senate Education Committee, Senator Mike Doherty (R-23) expressed his opposition to legislation that would force school districts to buy textbooks from vendors on a list approved by the New Jersey Department of Education (DOE) due to their incorporation of “inclusive material.”

Sen. Mike Doherty opposed legislation that would force school districts to buy textbooks from vendors on a list approved by the NJDOE due to their incorporation of ‘inclusive material.’ (Flickr)

“Our state spends too much time trying to incorporate identity politics into our curriculum, and too little ensuring that all of our students are proficient in the basics of reading, writing, science, and math when they graduate,” said Doherty. “The simple fact is a math textbook should teach math, a chemistry textbook should teach chemistry. A publisher that produces a textbook that effectively teaches those topics shouldn’t be barred for failing to reach some bureaucrat’s vague standard for ‘inclusive materials.'”

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Senator Tom Kean

Kean Bill to Combat Human Trafficking Passes Committee

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Legislation Follows Reports that Thousands Have Been Impacted by Human Trafficking in NJ in Recent Years

Legislation sponsored by Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean that would bolster the efforts of the New Jersey Commission on Human Trafficking has passed the Senate Law and Public Safety Committee.

Senator Tom Kean listening to local residents at the NJ Human Trafficking Forum in 2013. (SenateNJ.com)

“Human trafficking is truly a form of modern-day enslavement. It routinely and disproportionately impacts our most vulnerable residents – and it’s happening right here in New Jersey,” Kean said. “Our state is situated between two major cities. You can get here in a flash by taking an airplane, arriving at a seaport, or speeding down an interstate. These are all factors that have made New Jersey a target for human trafficking.

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Senator Anthony Bucco

Bucco & Advocates Fight for ‘Erin’s Law’ to Require NJ Schools to Teach Kids about Sexual Assault

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After Years of Advocacy, Senate Committee Passes Erin’s Law to Require ‘Safe Touch’ Education in NJ School Districts

The Senate Education Committee has passed “Erin’s Law” legislation long-sponsored by Senator Anthony Bucco (R-Morris) to require school districts to incorporate sexual abuse prevention and awareness education into the NJ Student Learning Standards, formerly known as the core curriculum.

Senator Bucco is working with local advocates and child sexual abuse survivor Erin Merryn, for whom the law is named, to swiftly advance the measure. Merryn has successfully advocated to enact Erin’s Law in more than two dozen other states.

A copy of Erin’s testimony, as submitted to the Senate Committee, can be found here.

Erin’s Law, legislation long-sponsored by Sen. Anthony Bucco, would require NJ schools to teach kids about sexual assault. The bill is named for Erin Merryn, (pictured above) a survivor who has become a national advocate. (Photo courtesy of Erin Merryn)

“93 percent of kids who are sexually abused know their attacker – it could be family-friend, a sibling, or even a parent. Teaching our children not to talk to strangers just isn’t enough when their abuser could be hiding in plain sight,” Senator Bucco said. “The ‘safe touch’ education that Erin’s Law will require can empower kids to recognize the signs of abuse and speak out the moment it occurs.”

“We have spent years fighting for Erin’s Law and we will not stop until every child, in every New Jersey classroom, has access to this education,” Senator Bucco added. “No child should feel ashamed or suffer in silence. As a father, a grandfather, and a longtime advocate for all kids in my state, I am committed to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to get this law passed this session. For the sake of our children, we simply cannot afford to let this bill die again.”

“Without Erin’s Law kids are often only going to be educated to be quiet on this matter and those are the kids that are being abused,” Erin Merryn said. “Had this law existed when I was a child, I could have spoken up. Instead I stayed silent. I am thrilled that Senator Bucco is sponsoring this bill and understands the importance of protecting kids from abuse. 35 states have already passed Erin’s Law. New Jersey should be next.”

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Senator Steve Oroho

Oroho Responds to Appointment to Senate Select Committee on Investigation

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Senator Steven Oroho (R-24) issued the following statement in response to his appointment to a newly formed Senate Select Committee on Investigation:

Sen. Steven Oroho responded to his appointment to a newly formed Senate Select Committee on Investigation, saying it’s a great responsibility that he takes very seriously. (SenateNJ.com)

“The important matters that will be investigated by the select committee will help us to protect our institutions of government and improve the ability of our state to provide justice to the victims of sexual assault.

“I thank the Senate President for the confidence he has expressed in me through this appointment. It’s a great responsibility that I take very seriously.”

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Senator Tom Kean

Kean Commends Creation of Senate Select Committee on Investigation

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Following his calls for the Legislature to conduct a bipartisan investigation into the Governor’s hiring practices and a review of New Jersey’s criminal and civil statutes regarding sexual assault, Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean commended the creation of a special Senate Select Committee on Investigation to address these matters:

Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean commended the creation of a special Senate Select Committee on Investigation. (©iStock)

“The Senate is taking the right step in forming a select committee to investigate government hiring practices, review the handling of the allegations raised by Ms. Brennan, and examine how our criminal justice system handles cases like hers,” said Kean. “I sincerely hope our colleagues in the General Assembly will demonstrate their understanding of the importance of this effort and make this a joint effort by the full Legislature.”

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Senator Kristin Corrado

Corrado Applauds Formation of Bipartisan Senate Select Committee on Investigation

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Senator Kristin Corrado praised the formation of a bipartisan Senate Select Committee on Investigation to investigate the handling of the sexual assault allegations against a former high-level state official, examine government hiring practices and background checks, and conduct a review of the criminal justice system’s procedures for responding to allegations of sexual assault, abuse and harassment.

Sen. Kristin Corrado praised the formation of a bipartisan Senate Select Committee on Investigation. (©iStock)

“I commend Senate President Sweeney for making the decision to convene this special legislative committee and call upon Speaker Coughlin to join us to create a bipartisan joint legislative committee,” said Corrado. “As a co-equal branch of government, the Legislature plays a critical role in protecting the integrity of our government.”

Corrado had previously called for a legislative investigation into these matters.

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Senator Kristin Corrado

Corrado Introduces Resolution to Create Special Legislative Committee to Investigate Governor’s Hiring Practices

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In response to numerous concerns that have been raised regarding current and former employees of the Murphy Administration, Senator Kristin Corrado has introduced a resolution to constitute a special legislative committee to conduct a broad investigation into the hiring practices of Governor Phil Murphy.

Sen. Kristin Corrado has introduced a resolution to constitute a special legislative committee to conduct a broad investigation into the hiring practices of Gov. Phil Murphy. (SenateNJ.com)

Click here to view a PDF of the resolution.

“The floodgates have opened with numerous reports of questionable hires by the Murphy Administration, including a corrupt official convicted on federal bribery charges, one with multiple allegations of sexual assault, and another who was involved in a major campaign finance scandal,” said Corrado. “We must investigate why the governor thought it was appropriate to hire these individuals into positions of public trust. We must examine the safeguards that exist in the hiring process, and learn how they failed or were sidestepped to allow Governor Murphy to reward his campaign workers with highly paid positions at taxpayer expense.”

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Republican Senators

Tom Kean

District 21 - Republican Leader

Kip Bateman

District 16

Chris Brown

District 2

Anthony Bucco

District 25

Gerald Cardinale

District 39

Kristin Corrado

District 40

Michael Doherty

District 23

Jim Holzapfel

District 10

Steven Oroho

District 24

Declan O'Scanlon

District 13

Joe Pennacchio

District 26

Robert Singer

District 30

Samuel Thompson

District 12

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