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.”
The bill, S-1862, would provide a supplemental appropriation of $6 million to the Department of Health and Senior services to increase the grant awarded to CINJ’s central Jersey affiliate, Robert Wood Johnson Hospital in New Brunswick, for the Fiscal Year 2005. In June, CINJ was awarded $18 million during the FY2005 Budget negotiations to be split among North and South Jersey affiliates, but with the inclusion of the $6 million supplemental bill, central New Jersey would also have access to services as well.
“With this supplemental appropriation, we could ensure that all New Jerseyans have access to great cancer treatment services without having to travel great distances, while at the same time positioning New Jersey’s facilities closer to the finish line in the race for the cure,” said Senator Smith. “CINJ offers first-rate care and top notch research in one institution, and with the continued support of the State, we can expect CINJ to expand upon their already marvelous record and up the ante for cancer institutions throughout the nation.”
The bill now heads to the full Senate for consideration.