WEST PATERSON BOROUGH – A measure sponsored by Senator Nia H. Gill that would appropriate $250,000 in low-interest loans to help restore and further develop Morris Canal Park has been unanimously approved by the Senate.
“The funding that is being allocated for West Paterson will help restore existing and create new projects to beautify the area surrounding Morris Canal Park,” said Senator Gill, D-Essex and Passaic.
TRENTON – The Senate today gave final legislative approval to a bill, sponsored by Senator Paul A. Sarlo, to make it a crime to lure someone over the Internet into committing a crime. It passed without opposition in the Senate.
“When a sick mind can use technology to endanger a young mother playing with her children in their front yard, we need a strong response,” said Senator Sarlo, D-Bergen, Essex and Passaic.
TRENTON – A measure sponsored by Senator Ellen Karcher that would regulate campaign contributions made to state committees, political action committees, and state and county political organizations was approved today by the Assembly State Government Committee.
“Establishing a set of guidelines to regulate campaign and political contributions will help to maintain honesty and integrity within the state’s political system,” said Senator Karcher, D-Mercer and Monmouth. “As elected officials, we represent the interests of the citizens in New Jersey, and they should feel confident that we are working to progress measures that represent their needs and interests.”
TRENTON – Senators Shirley K. Turner and Ronald L. Rice welcomed committee approval of their bill to appropriate an additional $15 million to the low-income rental assistance program signed into law over the summer.
“The fact that the federal government doesn’t do more than it does now to get working families off the street and into their own homes is illogical,” said Senator Turner, D-Mercer. “But the Bush Administrations attempts this year to cut the Section 8 program is simply unconscionable. It is clearly up to the State to make sure the funds will always be there to get as many poor families into the homes they need to take the first steps out of poverty. This additional $15 million is another step in the right direction.”
TRENTON – A bill by Senator Barbara Buono that would provide grants for non-gaming development in Atlantic City passed the Senate today.
“Atlantic City is one of the jewels of the Jersey Shore – it is home not only to some of the best gaming in the country, but also has one of the best beaches on the Atlantic Coast,” said Senator Buono, D-Middlesex and Chair of the Senate Wagering, Tourism and Historical Preservation Committee. “The State is now in a position where it can add to the list of attractions and make Atlantic City a world-class location for dining and shopping through the promotion of new retail entertainment districts.”
TRENTON – With his wife, Maribeth, and daughter, Margaret, by his side, Senator Joseph V. Doria was sworn in today by Senate President and Acting Governor Richard Codey to fill the remaining three years of an unexpired term for State Senator in the 31st Legislative District, which includes Bayonne and parts of Jersey City in Hudson County.
“It’s truly a blessing to be back serving the people of not only the 31st District, but the entire State of New Jersey, for another three years,” said Senator Doria, D-Hudson. “Public service is a noble goal, and I intend to partake in my duties as State Senator with the nobility, humility and honor that the position demands.”
TRENTON – Senator Barbara Buono welcomed final legislative approval today of one of three measures aimed at cracking down on individuals repeatedly found guilt of drunk driving.
“Repeat drunk drivers are obviously not getting the message – reckless behavior can get someone killed and must be stopped,” said Senator Buono, D-Middlesex. “Today we are passing the final part of a package of legislation that makes sure that drunk drivers learn that getting behind the wheel while under the influence can have dire consequences. Hopefully, we can reduce the number of needless accidents and fatalities.”
TRENTON – Senator Nicholas J. Sacco welcomed final Senate approval for his measure to discourage the theft of E-ZPass responders by making that theft a crime of the fourth degree.
“Unfortunately, E-ZPass responders are easily removed from vehicles and have proven a popular target for thieves,” said Senator Sacco, D-Bergen and Hudson and Chair of the Senate Transportation Committee. “This bill seeks to discourage individuals from targetting these devices and the drivers who use them.”
TRENTON – A bill sponsored by Senator Bob Smith which would appropriate $6 million to the central New Jersey affiliate of the Cancer Institute of New Jersey (CINJ) to provide for comprehensive care and research was approved unanimously by the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee today.
“Recently, New Jersey was named a ‘cancer-control’ state by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and that’s in no small part due to the work being done at CINJ,” said Senator Smith, D-Middlesex and Somerset, the Chairman of the Senate Environment Committee. “For too long, New Jersey has had the dubious distinction of being known as a ‘cancer corridor’ due to the abnormally high rate of cancer occurrences in the State, but CINJ and other groups are making strides in changing that image. On the State level, we should do as much as we can to support their efforts.”
TRENTON – Senator Shirley K. Turner, Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson Coleman and Assemblyman Reed Gusciora presented the U.S. Men’s Rowing Team with a Legislative Resolution commending the team on their gold medal performance in the men’s eights rowing competition at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece.
“The Olympics gives the entire country a chance to get behind the finest American athletes every four years,” said Senator Turner, D-Mercer. “For those two weeks, there is only one team any of us cares about – Team USA. This year, New Jersey residents got a special treat as our favorite sons, the US Rowing Team, brought home the gold.”
TRENTON – Legislation sponsored by Senators Joseph F. Vitale and Ronald L. Rice which would appropriate $5 million for the AIDS Drug Distribution Program (ADDP) was unanimously approved today by the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee.
“HIV/AIDS has become this century’s bubonic plague, and without education, treatment and support from the State, it will continue to consume too many too soon,” said Senator Vitale, D-Middlesex, the Chairman of the Senate Health and Human Services Committee. “We have to step in, and provide relief to those who are suffering from the disease, and a means to contain the disease, or we will continue to see a rise in the AIDS epidemic.”
TRENTON – The Senate today approved a bill, sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Bernard F. Kenny Jr., to restore a pedestrian passageway that will provide public access to the open space on the New Jersey side of Ellis Island.
“Ellis Island is so rich in the immigration history of America that it should be experienced first hand,” said Senator Kenny, D-Hudson. “This walkway will enable our citizens to see the historic hospital structures and the open courtyards where our ancestors first encountered America.”
TRENTON – The Senate today approved a bill sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Bernard F. Kenny Jr. to provide 50 percent reductions in sewer and water fees charged to new connections for units built by public housing authorities and non-profit organizations building affordable housing projects.
“The Supreme Court has made it clear that municipalities have an affirmative obligation to provide the infrastructure needed to make affordable housing realistically possible,” said Senator Kenny, D-Hudson.
TRENTON – Legislation sponsored by Senator Ronald L. Rice, which would provide State Green Acres funding for open space acquisition and park development in urban and densely populated areas in Essex County, was approved by the full Senate today.
“To preserve the quality of life for those living in New Jersey, we need to preserve the our open spaces, and help develop our parks and urban centers,” said Senator Rice. “Densely populated areas such as Newark are being developed rapidly and the need to preserve open space is pressing. If we want to preserve our resources and maintain a comfortable standard of living we need to commit to protecting our parks and opens paces.”
TRENTON – A bill sponsored by Senator Joseph F. Vitale which would give adoptees and certain others access to the adoptee’s original birth certificates and other related family information was approved by the Senate today by a vote of 23-14.
“So much of one’s identity is defined by answering one key question — where did I come from?” said Senator Vitale, D-Middlesex, the Chairman of the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee. “Family history is a living tapestry that many of us take for granted, but for adoptees and their descendants, there’s a gap there that, even though they may have been brought up by the best family in the world, cannot be filled. With this bill, we’re giving adoptees the right to know where they came from, and opening the door of history to those that thought it permanently sealed.”