MAY NEWSLETTER: Community Updates From Your Legislator


From the State House: Legislative Updates
The Preserve New Jersey Act: Preventing Raids of Taxpayer Money
Houghtaling and Downey are proud sponsors of legislation that
has passed both houses of the Legislature and now awaits Governor Christie's signature. The Preserve New Jersey Act would ensure that the voter-approved 2014 constitutional amendment, which dedicated a portion of the state's corporate business tax revenues to open space preservation, is protected. The fund has been siphoned-off to pay state salaries, but this bill would safeguard $146 million worth of funding over the next two years for preservation of open space, farmland, and historic structures.

A-2565: Helping NJ STARS Scholarship Recipients in Times of Need
A bill sponsored by Assemblywoman Downey and Assemblyman Houghtaling that will allow NJ STARS and NJ STARS II scholarship recipients who suffer a medical condition or death of a parent or spouse to retain their program eligibility gained unanimous support from the Assembly and now awaits further consideration from the Senate. "NJ STARS scholarship recipients have worked hard to get where they are and deserve every opportunity to succeed in college," said Downey, "With this bill, students will be supported and reassured during their time of need that their scholarship and place at the school will still be there when they return."

More legislation sponsored by Houghtaling & Downey:
  • A-2949: Provides diamondback terrapins protection as nongame indigenous species.
  • A-3053: Directs the Div. of Travel and Tourism to publish on its website information of farm-to-table restaurants.
  • A-3411: Requires DOH regulations regarding elevated blood levels in children, and appropriate responses thereto, to be consistent with latest Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations.
  • A-3492: Makes FY 2016 supplemental appropriations to DOH for $7,453,000 for family planning services.


Houghtaling and Downey host a round table discussion between local elected officials and General Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto.
Assemblyman Houghtaling joins teachers from Freehold Borough, Red Bank, and more to advocate for fair school funding at an Assembly Budget Hearing.

RB_schools_for_newsletter.JPGHoughtaling and Downey join Superintendent Dr. Jared Rumage for tours of Red Bank Borough's schools, which face severe underfunding.


Houghtaling & Downey in the News

Houghtaling and Downey Launch Prom Project to Provide Dresses to Local Students at No Cost, The Journal
"Monmouth County’s newest Assembly Members Eric Houghtaling and Joann Downey have launched a program to provide prom dresses to local high school students at no cost. The “Princess Prom Project” will strive to ensure that young ladies who would otherwise not be able to afford a prom dress can have a memorable and magical prom night, regardless of their financial situation."

Bill to Keep Guns Away from Serious Criminal Offenders Clears General Assembly, PolitickerNJ
"Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Tim Eustace, Shavonda Sumter, Joann Downey, Benjie Wimberly, Joe Danielsen, Angelica Jimenez and Andrew Zwicker to prohibit individuals convicted of carjacking, gang criminality, racketeering, making terroristic threats or the unlawful possession of a machine gun or handgun from purchasing or owning a firearm in New Jersey gained approval from the Assembly on Thursday."



The 11th District Princess Prom Project

Shopping Party Dates:
Tuesday, May 17, 3-7pm
Thursday, May 26, 3-7pm
Tuesday, May 31, 3-7pm
Tuesday, June 7, 3-7pm

Our office is now home to over 100 dresses, each one waiting for their perfect match! We will be hosting Shopping Parties throughout May and June, where young ladies who would otherwise not be able to afford a prom dress can come pick one out for free. Contact our office at (732) 695-3371 to make an appointment or find out how to get involved.



Central Jersey Irish Festival

The Central Jersey Irish Festival returns to Freehold on May 14. An entrance fee of $5 will give you access to entertainment, food, craft vendors, and more. Awards ceremony will be held at 10:30am.

Saturday, May 14, 10:00am - 6:00pm
Lake Topanemus Park, Freehold Pond



Walk-a-Thon for Mary's Place by the Sea

Mary's Place by the Sea, a nonprofit that cares for and provides services for women with cancer, is hosting their 5th Annual Walk-a-Thon. This year's fundraising goal is $200,000, to help them expand the number of women served.

Saturday, May 21, 11:00am
Ocean Grove Pathway, Neptune Township



Freehold Memorial Day Parade

The Freehold Borough Memorial Day Parade is the oldest-running parade in New Jersey, and is celebrating its 142nd year! Join Houghtaling and Downey for a post-parade lunch at our office at 35 West Main Sreet, Freehold.

Monday, May 30, 9am
Main Street, Freehold



In Your Community: Local News

Apr_16_-_MURC_Garden.jpgTwo Who Left Shrewsbury a Better Place by John Burton, Two River Times
"With the planting of a tree and placing of a bench plaque, the borough honored two citizens whose efforts contributed to the borough’s quality of life over the course of their lifetimes... Hermann A. Allen and John J. McGuire Jr. These two longtime borough residents, now both deceased, gave of themselves for many years to the town they called home."

Neptune Crime Rate Down, by Don Stine, The Coaster
"Neptune’s reportable crime rate, which includes both violent and property crimes, decreased by 12.5 percent last year, according to the department’s 2015 annual report... Community and school outreach programs and improved social media and public information programs have been initiated and the police department’s stand-alone website is expected to be up and running by May 2."

SALT School Graduates 110 in Hospitality Training Course, by Michelle Gladden, Asbury Park Sun
"On Saturday morning, 110 students received their SALT school diplomas. Final interviews were done to fill the 60 open posts at the hotel – set to open May 26. Most positions will be full time in season but many are also year round positions, Bowd said. And while the graduates, at the time of graduation, had yet to learn whether they would become part of the SALT team, 90 percent of the new hires will be Asbury Park and Neptune residents, Bowd said. The jobs will range from housekeeping and front desk posts to bar, events, movie theatre ushers and line chefs."

COMMUNITY SPOTLIGHT: Midtown Urban Renaissance Corporation

The Neptune-based Midtown Urban Renaissance Corporation (MURC) is a nonprofit that aims to empower residents and enhance their quality of life through neighborhood revitalization, affordable housing, safe streets, education, and employment opportunities. Their recent Better Block Party and Community Garden Clean Up (pictured above) brought together friends and neighbors and raised awareness of the Liberty Park Community Garden. Connect with MURC on Facebook and Twitter.


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