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Senator Tom Kean

Statement from Sen. Kean on Recommendations of Economic and Fiscal Policy Group

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Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean issued the following statement in response to the recommendations issued by the Economic and Fiscal Policy Group:

Sen. Tom Kean said he’s confident legislators can work together in a bipartisan fashion to accomplish many of the reforms proposed by the Economic and Fiscal Policy Group. (Pixabay)

“I’m glad that the bipartisan Economic and Fiscal Policy Group has recognized the serious long-term fiscal challenges that Senate Republicans have fought for years to resolve for New Jersey taxpayers.

“The members of our caucus have long championed legislative initiatives that are similar to many of the group’s recommendations, including my proposals to create a new tax deduction for charitable contributions to the non-profits that serve our communities and to look at the efficiencies of county and local governments.

“I’m confident that we can work together in a bipartisan fashion on many of these reforms for the betterment of the people of New Jersey.”

District 9

Connors, Rumpf & Gove: Restoration of Homestead Benefit Program Funding is a Small Victory in State Budget Process

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Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove want concerned constituents to know that proposed cuts to the Homestead Benefit Program were avoided in the adopted Fiscal Year 2019 State Budget.

Sen. Connors, Assemblyman Rumpf and Assemblywoman Gove want concerned constituents to know that proposed cuts to the Homestead Benefit Program were avoided in the FY 2019 State Budget. (©iStock.com)

In April, the 9th District Delegation alerted constituents that Governor Murphy had proposed cutting Homestead rebates in half, and pledged their commitment to reject funding cuts to the vital property tax relief program.

“In what was an otherwise irresponsible and bloated State budget, the proposed $154 million cut to the Homestead Benefit program ultimately never happened, with the funding fully restored in the final approved budget. Certainly, the program has been and remains underfunded, but at least devastating funding cuts that would have proven very financially difficult for affected homeowners were successfully defeated.

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Senator Gerald Cardinale

Cardinale Announces Bill to Establish a Permanent NJ Office of International Trade

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In light of Governor Phil Murphy’s designation of the Office of International Trade and Investment, Senator Gerry Cardinale announced his plans to reintroduce legislation he has long-sponsored that would codify this program, by establishing a permanent global trade division within the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJ EDA.)

Sen. Gerry Cardinale announced his plans to reintroduce legislation that would establish a permanent Office of International Trade. (CommonsWikimedia)

Senator Cardinale noted his bill would improve upon the steps Governor Murphy took last week to create a new Office of International Trade and Investment. Sen. Cardinale’s legislation is essential to ensuring that this new office continues to operate during future gubernatorial administrations as well.

“Small Businesses owners who are looking to expand abroad often do not have the legal resources to navigate foreign trade laws,” Cardinale (R-39) said. “By fostering partnerships between local mom-and-pop stores and international advocates, we can promote ‘Jersey Made’ products around the world. The future of our state’s economy depends on a permanent Office of International Trade, right here in Garden State.”

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Senator Tom Kean

Kean Statement on Passing of Sen. Bill Schluter

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Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean released the following statement on the death of former Senator Bill Schluter, who passed away this morning at the age of 90.

Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean said Sen. Bill Schluter was everything a public servant should be. Sen. Schluter passed away on Aug. 6, 2018, at the age of 90. (SenateNJ.com)

“Senator Schluter was everything a true public servant should be. He held his Legislative colleagues to a very high ethical standard – a bar he never failed to meet. He was a courageous leader in the fight for good government reform. There is no question that we are a better off as a state because of his advocacy. My heart goes out to Bill’s family and friends, and all those who are mourning this tremendous loss.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Blasts Rutgers for Forcing Students & Taxpayers to Pay for Golden Parachutes

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Senator Joe Pennacchio blasted Rutgers University for forcing students and New Jersey taxpayers to pick up the tab for more than $11.5 million in settlements, buyouts and golden parachutes for elite employees at the State-funded university. The discovery of the payouts was reported by NJ.com on August 3, 2018.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio blasts Rutgers for forcing students and taxpayers to pick up the tab for more than $11.5 million in payouts to elite employees. (SenateNJ.com)

“The cost of higher education is skyrocketing in New Jersey and it’s no secret why. It is unconscionable that a State-funded university would have the gall to raise tuition, and then turn right back around and give away millions of dollars to elite employees. These golden parachutes are an outrageous misuse of funds. Rutgers owes students and taxpayers an explanation. After all, they pay their salary,” Senator Pennacchio (R-26) said.

“Our goal is to ensure that students who go to high school in New Jersey, can continue their education at a great in-State college, get great career training, and continue to live and work in the state they call home. How can we expect them to do that if our flagship university refuses to do anything to make higher education more affordable?

“Talk to any college student on campus – they do not want their tuition dollars spent on multi-million dollar payouts to coaches and administrators who make enough money as it is. This fiscally-irresponsible practice must come to an end.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Highlights Dangers of Sex Tourism in Dominican Republic

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Introduces New Legislation Urging NJ Residents Not to Travel to DR

Due to an increase in human trafficking violations in the Dominican Republic (DR,) Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) has introduced a Senate Resolution that would urge New Jersey residents to immediately cease travel to the Dominican Republic, unless the country takes action to combat the epidemic of sex tourism within the nation’s borders.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio has introduced a resolution that would urge NJ residents to cease travel to the Dominican Republic, unless the country takes action to combat the epidemic of sex tourism within the nation’s borders. (SenateNJ.com)

“Human trafficking is modern-day enslavement in which innocent people, particularly young children, are abducted, sold, and forced into the heartbreaking sex-trade and forced labor industry,” Pennacchio said. “The Dominican Republic’s beautiful beaches and mountains cannot cover-up the fact that it’s also the world’s most dangerous tourist destination for at-risk children. Ending human trafficking is not a partisan issue. This is about human rights.”

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Senator Steve Oroho

Oroho, Space & Wirths Announce Funding for Local Bridges

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District 24 Will Receive More than $2 Million in Grants for Essential Repairs

Senator Steven Oroho, Assemblyman Parker Space, and Assemblyman Hal Wirths (all R-24) announced that Legislative District 24 will receive $2,183,866 to fund bridge work in Sussex and Morris Counties.

Sen. Steven Oroho and Assemblymen Parker Space and Hal Wirths announced that District 24 will receive $2,183,866 to fund bridge work in Sussex and Morris Counties. (SenateNJ.com)

The repairs will be funded by “Local Bridges, Future Needs” grants, which will provide $47.3 million for repairs Statewide. The grant program is funded by the New Jersey Transportation Trust Fund, under the purview of the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) Divisions of Local Aid and Economic Development.

“I am very pleased to see that the administration recognizes the critical need to ensure counties across New Jersey have a fiscally-responsible way to keep our roads and bridges safe,” Senator Oroho said. “Calculating how much each county needs based on the bridge deck area and the portion of bridges in need of repair is exactly how we should be awarding funds. I hope to see this kind of sound, evidence-based decision making with State resources continue.”

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Senator Tom Kean

Kean: Murphy’s “Free” Community College Pilot Program to Cost NJ Taxpayers $20 Million

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Says Misguided Scheme Fails to Address Underlying Problems That Are Driving Tuition Bills Higher

Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean said that a pilot program announced by the Murphy Administration that would shift the cost of tuition and fees for some community college students to New Jersey taxpayers is misguided and unaffordable.

Sen. Tom Kean said a ‘free’ community college pilot program announced by Gov. Phil Murphy will cost New Jersey taxpayers $20 million. (Flickr)

“Free community college sounds great, but nothing is really free,” said Kean. “The Governor’s plan simply shifts $20 million of tuition costs for a handful of students to New Jersey taxpayers who are already overburdened. It’s a huge and unnecessary expense that the State cannot afford to assume.”

Kean warned that the $20 million cost of the pilot program could become an annual expense of $200 million to $400 million if the program is fully implemented statewide.

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Senator Gerald Cardinale

District 39 Legislators Announce $1.3 Million in Grants for Local Bridge Reconstruction Projects

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Senator Gerry Cardinale and Assemblyman Robert Auth (both R-39) announced that Montvale Borough and Mahwah Township will receive $1.3 million in “Local Bridge, Future Needs” grants from the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) to undertake bridge reconstruction projects in the two municipalities.

Sen. Gerry Cardinale and Asm. Robert Auth announced that Montvale and Mahwah will receive $1.3 million in grants to undertake bridge reconstruction projects. (Wikimedia Commons)

“New Jersey must continue to make sound investments in our transportation infrastructure,” Sen. Gerry Cardinale said. “Families and commuters rely heavily on well-maintained bridges. Bridges and roads in Mahwah and Montvale, for example, are in desperate need of repairs. I am relieved to see that these communities will receive $1.3 million in grants, so that they can complete construction without burdening taxpayers.”

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Senator Declan O'Scanlon

O’Scanlon Announces Funding to Rebuild Monmouth County Bridges

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Monmouth Awarded Most Funding of Any County in NJ

Senator Declan O’Scanlon announced that Monmouth County will receive $6 million in “Local Bridge, Future Needs” grants from the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) to undertake bridge reconstruction projects.

Sen. Declan O’Scanlon announced that Monmouth County will receive $6 million in “Local Bridge, Future Needs” grants. (SenateNJ.com)

“This award demonstrates how the New Jersey Transportation Trust Fund is employed to support vital local projects,” said O’Scanlon (R-Monmouth). I want to commend NJDOT Commissioner Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti and Monmouth County Engineer Joe Ettore for their efforts to ensure that this grant program funds bridge projects around the state in a fair and appropriate manner.”

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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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