Scharfenberger’s legislation would ease property taxes

Assemblyman Gerry Scharfenberger

Assemblyman Gerry Scharfenberger, PhD has introduced his first bill.

A3284 would mandate that the Energy Receipts Tax, the fees that public utilities pay in lieu of property taxes, be paid directly to the municipalities they are intended for, rather than diverted into the State’s General Fund.

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Posted: March 2nd, 2020 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County News, New Jersey, NJ State Legislature | Tags: , , , , | 3 Comments »

Pot Legalizaton Passes in Senate and Assembly Committees

After hours of delays for last minute amendments which caused the suspension of testimony and debate  a legislation that legalizes and establishes a regulatory structure of recreation marijuana passed the Assembly Appropriates Committee and the Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday night, according to reports on Politico, InsiderNJ and NJGlobe.

Legislation to expunge marijuana convictions, including felony convictions for selling over 5 lbs of pot, passed the committees.  The felony expungement provisions prompted a strong reaction from Republican Senators Kip Bateman (Somerset), Michael Doherty (Warren) and Gerald Cardinale (Bergen).  Bateman said the bill contained “evil.”  Doherty said that the bill is a “deal with the devil.”  Cardinale suggested calling the bill, “the Drug Pusher’s Friend Act.” 

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Posted: March 19th, 2019 | Author: | Filed under: Marijuana, Monmouth County News, New Jersey, News | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Pearl Lee considering LD 11 Assembly bid

Pearl Lee

Pearl Lee, the Republican candidate for Red Bank Mayor last month, told MMM that she reached out to Monmouth Republican Chairman Shaun Golden to express her interest in challenging Democrat Assembly Members Eric Houghtailing and Joann Downey in the 11th legislative district next year.

Lee, 64, a retired small business owner, had never sought elected office before securing the Republican nomination for Red Bank Mayor last year as a write-in candidate in the June primary.  She sought the nomination after learning that  the local party failed to field a candidate to challenge Democrat Mayor Pat Menna.

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Posted: December 4th, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County News, New Jersey, News | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Democrats in the running for Handlin’s Assembly seat

Josh Welle and Amber Gesslein could run for the Dem nominations for Assembly in LD 13 next year.

Assemblywoman Amy Handlin’s announcement that she will not seek reelection next year inevitably creates speculation on who will run to replace her. While party leaders on both sides of the aisle would rather their troops stay focused on the election coming up next month, the jockeying has started given how infrequently a vacancy occurs in the 13th district.

Democrats, who normally lose badly in the district will likely have a contest for the two Assembly nominations next year, given Handlin’s vacancy and Serena DiMaso serving her freshman term.  DiMaso put something of a target on her back with the Dems when she made a robocall criticizing LD 11 Assemblymembers Eric Hougtaling and Joann Downey for voting for Governor Murphy’s tax increases.  Houghtaling and Downey responded to DiMaso’s robocall with an ethics complaint.

With the Assembly on top of the ballot next year, Dems will likely be motivated and funded, even in LD 13.

Potential Democrat Candidates for LD 13 Assembly in 2019 who are running for other offices this year:

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Posted: October 8th, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: 13th Legislative District, Monmouth County News, NJ Politics, NJ State Legislature | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Murphy swears in John Pallone as Long Branch Mayor

The State Legislature is still toiling in Trenton making sure Governor Phil Murphy’s conditional vetoes match what he agreed to with Senate President Steve Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin yesterday, but Murphy has left the Capitol and returned home to Monmouth County where is issued the Oath of Office to Long Branch Mayor John Pallone moments ago.

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Posted: July 1st, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: Long Branch, Monmouth County News, New Jersey | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

DiMaso proposes school safety legislation

Assemblywoman Serena DiMaso

Assemblywoman Serena DiMaso (R-Monmouth), along with her colleagues Assemblywomen Nancy Munoz (R-Union) and Holly Schepisi (R-Bergen), today called on the legislature to take action on a 10 bill package they introduced last week to address school safety in light of the recent shooting in Parkland, Florida and other tragic incidents.

The proposed legislation is based on recommendations from two panels of experts that were set-up in the wake of the 2012 school shooting in Newtown, Conn, DiMaso and Munoz said in a joint statement.   The groups included government officials, education leaders, law enforcement, community members, school officials, teachers and parents. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: April 4th, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: 13th Legislative District, Education, Monmouth County News, NJ State Legislature, School Safety | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Dems Pick Up Key Seats in Legislature, GOP Takes Several Tight Races

Senate President Steve Sweeney fought off a surprisingly tough challenge from his Republican opponent, funded by NJEA money. New Jersey voters went to the polls yesterday and turned their attention to all 120 seats in the Legislature, ending a busy election season that was rife with special interest spending, political attack ads and controversial mailers, as… Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: November 8th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: 2017 Elections, Monmouth County News | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Aberdeen Mayor Supports O’Scanlon’s Efforts To Limit Property Tax Hikes

Aberdeen Mayor Fred Tagliarini

We haven’t heard from Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop since Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon challenged him to pressure Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto to put the extension of the 2% limit on arbitration awards for police and firefighter salary contracts up for a vote. But Aberdeen Mayor Fred Tagliarini, a Democrat, called to say that he supports O’Scanlon’s effort.

“The 2% arbitration cap is a very powerful tool in stabilizing property taxes,” Tagliarini said in a phone interview with MMM. “I don’t know any mayor, Democrat or Republican, who wants it to expire.  The cap should be extended before it expires in December.” Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: October 14th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Aberdeen Mayor Supports O’Scanlon’s Efforts To Limit Property Tax Hikes

O’Scanlon challenges Jersey City Mayor Fulop to pressure Speaker Prieto to extend Arbitration Cap

Jersey City Police Officers were awarded a 2% pay increase by a state appointed arbitrator this week.

Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon

Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop, not the Democrat nominee for Governor, declared that the best interests of his city’s residents and taxpayers prevailed, according to Hudson County View. 

The arbitrator’s decision will enable Mayor Fulop and the city council to keep their budget within the two-percent levy cap and hold the line on property taxes from substantially increasing.

“This is not a day where we say that we won, but rather that the best interest of the city, its residents and the taxpayers prevailed,” Fulop said in a statement reported by HCV.

“We have negotiated successfully with six of the city’s other unions to adopt measures that correct many of the outdated contract provisions and worked productively with the unions for the benefit of their members and the public. Unfortunately, the POBA chose a different route and an independent arbitrator was required.”

Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon (R-Monmouth) today called on Fulop to join him in challenging Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto to put legislation making the cap permanent up for vote in the Assembly. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: October 13th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Declan O'Scanlon, Jersey City, Monmouth County News, New Jersey, Property Taxes, Steve Fulop | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on O’Scanlon challenges Jersey City Mayor Fulop to pressure Speaker Prieto to extend Arbitration Cap

NJ Shutdown Is Over

Governor Christie signs the budget. Photo by Tim Larsen

Both houses of the New Jersey Legislature passed a budget last night which Governor Chris Christie signed, ending the three day shutdown of non-essential government services.

New Jersey state parks and beaches will be open today, the 4th of July.  Courts, MVC offices and all other state operations will return to their normal operating hours tomorrow.

At at 10pm press conference announcing a deal on legislation to change the State’s oversight of Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield, Senate President Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto said that would ask Christie to support their desire to pay state employees for their forced day off on July 3.

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Posted: July 4th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: New Jersey, New Jersey State Budget | Tags: , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »