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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Calls for More Robust Power Grid, Stronger Leadership to Prevent Mass Outages After Storms

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More than three days after Tropical Storm Isaias crossed the state Tuesday, more than 60,000 families in Morris County are still without power today.

Senator Pennacchio called for legislative action on his Reliability, Preparedness, and Storm Response Act bill and urged utility company leadership to step up efforts to prevent repeated storm-related power outages. (SenateNJ.com)

“It’s frustrating for everyone. If you are without lights, refrigeration and air conditioning or fans, every passing hour is excruciating,” said Senator Joe Pennacchio. “We all appreciate the work of the linemen who are working around the clock to restore power. We’ve had a good relationship with the regional liaisons who have been responsible and helpful, but utility company leadership needs to have a better plan. New Jersey’s utilities must be more proactive to prevent massive outages and strengthen the grid State residents depend on.”

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New Jersey Senate Republicans

Senate Republicans Call to Strengthen Power Grid in Aftermath of Storm Isaias

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After ratepayers have subsidized billions of dollars to improve the resiliency of the power grid since Superstorm Sandy, more than 100,000 households remain without power almost 72 hours after a tropical storm impacted New Jersey.

The fifteen members of the Senate Republican caucus sent the following letter (click here for PDF) to New Jersey Board of Public Utilities President Joseph Fiordaliso calling for strengthening the resilience of the State’s electrical power grid and formulating comprehensive plans for emergency responses in the future.

The Senate Republican caucus sent the following letter to BPU President Joseph Fiordaliso calling for strengthening the resilience of the State’s electrical power grid and formulating comprehensive plans for emergency responses in the future. (SenateNJ.com)

The full text of the letter is below:

August 7, 2020

Dear President Fiordaliso,

As you are well aware, New Jersey was recently hit by Tropical Storm Isaias. While the storm initially knocked out power to nearly 1.5 million residents, it is our understanding that days later, hundreds of thousands of New Jerseyans are still without power. This is one of several storms over the past several years that has caused widespread power outages and wreckage throughout the state.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio: In the Face of COVID, Doctors Must Be Unshackled and Allowed to Treat with HCQ

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Coronavirus numbers are on the increase across the United States, and so is the debate about hydroxychloroquine as a treatment and preventative. Senator Joe Pennacchio today said the politically fueled controversy is interfering with doctors who are scrambling to save lives.

Citing a series of credible medial studies and reports, Senator Pennacchio renewed his call for the Murphy Administration to allow doctors to prescribe HCQ to protect patients from COVID-19. (©iStock)

“Across the nation, the politicization of medicine has made hydroxychloroquine a cause célèbre,” said Pennacchio. “Here, in New Jersey, we should be above that. Our priority must be on saving lives and keeping residents healthy. We can’t allow petty partisanship to obstruct sensible medical protocol and solid science.”

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Senator Tom Kean

Kean Statement on the Passing of Shirley Rice

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Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean (R-21) released the following statement on the passing of Shirley Rice:

Sen. Tom Kean released the following statement on the passing of Shirley Rice. (SenateNJ.com)

“Rhonda and I are saddened to hear of the passing of Shirley Rice, the beloved wife of long-time colleague, friend, and confidant Senator Ron Rice. A dedicated mother, kind friend, and passionate advocate for students, Shirley’s loss will be felt by all who knew her. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Rice family during this difficult time.”

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio: Governor Must Address Special Needs Students’ Education Immediately

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When Special Ed Students Fall Behind, ‘Catching Up’ is Very Difficult

Senator Joe Pennacchio today voiced his concern that the state’s special education students are being forgotten as plans for the re-opening of schools in September continue to evolve.

Senator Pennacchio expressed concerns that the needs of special education students may not be getting the attention they deserve as plans are finalized for the opening of schools. (Pixabay)

“Going back to school is a dynamic situation right now, and specifics are changing every day,” said Pennacchio. “What about the plans for special education students? These students face unique challenges and the Department of Education and school districts must make it a priority to ensure their needs are met and the quality of special education exceeds the standards.

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Senator Anthony M. Bucco
Senator Joe Pennacchio
Senator Kristin Corrado

Bucco, Corrado & Pennacchio: Murphy’s Nursing Home, Unemployment & MVC Failures Must Be Probed by Senate

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Call for Democrats to Stop Delaying Formation of Special Investigative Committee

Senator Anthony M. Bucco, Senator Kristin Corrado, and Senator Joe Pennacchio said the Murphy Administration’s massive failures in protecting nursing homes, processing unemployment claims, and reopening Motor Vehicle Commission agencies must be investigated by the Legislature to ensure that fixes can be implemented as quickly as possible.

Senators Bucco, Corrado, and Pennacchio said the Murphy Administration’s massive failures in protecting nursing homes, processing unemployment claims, and reopening MVC agencies must be investigated by the Legislature to ensure that fixes can be implemented as quickly as possible. (SenateNJ.com)

“It’s clear to everyone in New Jersey that the Murphy Administration has failed to properly protect nursing home residents, help unemployed workers, or plan for the MVC’s reopening,” said Bucco (R-25). “What’s not clear, however, is why the governor didn’t listen to the warnings raised by so many people or why he continues to refuse to enact the common-sense solutions we’ve proposed. It’s also not clear why Senate Democrats continue to delay the bipartisan investigation we were promised to help guide our efforts to fix lingering problems and prevent a recurrence of these critical failures.”

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Senator Mike Doherty

Doherty to Murphy: Where’s the Aid for Warren County?

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Senator Michael Doherty (R-23) stood on the steps of the Warren County Court House with local leaders, freeholders, and legislators to ask one simple question of Governor Phil Murphy – “Where’s the aid for Warren County?”

Sen. Michael Doherty stood on the steps of the Warren County Court House with local leaders, freeholders, and legislators to ask one question of Gov. Murphy – ‘Where’s the aid for Warren County?’ (SenateNJ.com)

Here is Sen. Doherty’s statement:

“All of us are here today because we are concerned about the people of Warren County. We’re suffering out here, Gov. Murphy, and we have local small businesses that are being killed. So many families are involved in these small businesses. People have their entire life and their entire fortunes on the line. Unfortunately, we have a governor who’s totally tone-deaf to the needs of working New Jerseyans.

“In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, Congress and the President took decisive action and sent billions to the states. New Jersey received more than $2 billion. Instead of distributing that money how it was intended by Congress, and as emphasized in a letter that the congressional delegation all signed, Governor Murphy is squirreling away this money.

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Senator Tom Kean

Kean Measure Creating Student Advisory Commission for Higher Education Earns Senate Support

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Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean sponsors legislation establishing the Senate Higher Education Student Advisory Commission. The measure was approved today by the Senate.

Legislation sponsored by Senator Kean establishing the Senate Higher Education Student Advisory Commission cleared the Senate today. (SenateNJ.com)

“College students will have more influence on higher education policy under the bill,” said Kean (R-21). “Students selected to the commission can share valuable insight into the challenges and concerns facing young scholars on college campuses in a rapidly changing world.”

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Senator Steve Oroho

Oroho Bill to Improve Broadband Speeds and Quality in Rural Areas Clears Senate

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The Senate today passed legislation sponsored by Senator Steve Oroho that would bring faster, more reliable internet service to rural areas of New Jersey.

The Senate cleared Senator Oroho’s measure that would bring faster, more reliable internet service to rural areas of New Jersey. (©iStock)

Parts of the state with inferior broadband service, including portions of Sussex and Warren counties in Oroho’s legislative district, would benefit from the bill (S-1458) to bring state-of-the-art technology to communities currently underserved by cable providers.

“Too many neighborhoods in my district are hindered by slow internet speeds and it has taken a toll,” said Oroho (R-24). “Most communities across New Jersey enjoy lightning-fast downloads, but in less populated rural towns, internet users remain stuck in the slow lane.”

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Senator Tom Kean

Senate Clears Kean Bill Assisting College Students with Dependent Children Advances

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Legislation sponsored by Senator Tom Kean that would help college students with children with the cost of education passed the Senate today.

Sen. Kean’s legislation will help college students with dependent children find scholarship and grant money they may be eligible to receive. (Pixabay)

“The skyrocketing cost of a college is a challenge for the majority of students, but for parents juggling childcare expenses and the cost of school, the burden can be overwhelming,” said Kean (R-21). “This measure can help lighten the load for parents seeking to provide more opportunities and better futures for themselves and their children, allowing them to qualify for more financial aid.”

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Republican Senators

Tom Kean

District 21 - Republican Leader

Kip Bateman

District 16

Chris Brown

District 2

Anthony M. 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

Michael Testa

District 1

Samuel Thompson

District 12

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