Panel Ok'd Legislation Strengthening Raising Awareness of Unsecured Baby Monitors

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 An Assembly panel on Monday released two measures sponsored by Assemblywoman Joann Downey, Gabriela Mosquera and L. Grace Spencer to establish protections for families who use baby monitors with an internet connection. Both measures will not return to the Assembly Speaker for further consideration.

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Houghtaling and Downey Introduce Assembly Bill to Bar Those With DUI Convictions From Operating NJ Transit Trains

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Monmouth County Assembly Members Eric Houghtaling and Joann Downey have introduced legislation to the New Jersey General Assembly that would prohibit individuals with DUI convictions that resulted in loss or suspension of a driver’s license from operating a NJ Transit train. The legislation is the Assembly companion to legislation that has already passed the state Senate with unanimous support.

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Houghtaling, Downey Bill to Allow Installment Payments for Overpaid Homestead Credits Clears Assembly

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A bill sponsored by Monmouth County Assembly Members Eric Houghtaling and Joann Downey that would allow installment payments for seniors and disabled property taxpayers who are indebted to the state due to the overpayment of homestead credits cleared the New Jersey General Assembly Thursday. The measure received bipartisan support and was approved with a vote of 72-0.

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Assembly Panel Approves Eustace & Houghtaling Bill to Encourage Municipal Consolidation, Rein in Property Taxes

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Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Tim Eustace and Eric Houghtaling to give towns better tools to pursue municipal consolidation and ultimately rein in property taxes gained Assembly panel approval on Thursday.

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Houghtaling, Downey Sponsor Responsible Gun Control Legislation With Bipartisan Support

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Monmouth County Assembly Members Eric Houghtaling and Joann Downey have signed on as sponsors of a bill that would require the notification and involvement of local law enforcement prior to the expungement of certain mental health records for those wishing to purchase firearms. A similar bill passed both houses of the Legislature with bipartisan support during the last legislative session, before being conditionally vetoed by Governor Chris Christie. An attempt to override the veto did succeed in the Senate, but ultimately failed in the General Assembly.

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Houghtaling and Downey Bill to Preserve NJ STARS Scholarship For Students in Need Clears General Assembly

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Assembly legislation sponsored by Monmouth County Assembly Members Eric Houghtaling and Joann Downey to maintain NJ STARS scholarship eligibility for students who suffer a medical condition or death of a loved one has cleared the General Assembly. The bill received unanimous approval, and would preserve scholarship eligibility for NJ STARS and NJ STARS II recipients in the event of tragic circumstances that prevent enrollment as a full-time student.

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Houghtaling and Downey Tour Underfunded Schools in Red Bank Borough

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Monmouth County Assembly Members Eric Houghtaling and Joann Downey toured schools in the underfunded Red Bank Borough School District Friday, renewing calls for fair funding in the face of enrollment spikes and flat funding. Houghtaling and Downey joined Red Bank Superintendent Dr. Jared Rumage for tours of Red Bank Primary School and Red Bank Middle School, followed by a meeting with Superintendent Rumage to discuss what can be done to further the fight for equitable school funding.

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Houghtaling and Downey Sponsor Legislation to Prevent Raids of Taxpayer Money Meant for Open Space Preservation

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Assembly Members Eric Houghtaling and Joann Downey have signed-on as sponsors of legislation aimed at preserving constitutionally-dedicated funding meant to protect open space from development from being siphoned-off to pay state salaries.

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MAY NEWSLETTER: Community Updates From Your Legislator

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From the State House: Legislative Updates
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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.




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Houghtaling and Downey Sponsor Bipartisan Legislation to Deliver Property Tax Relief

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Bipartisan legislation sponsored by Monmouth County Assembly Members Eric Houghtaling and Joann Downey would deliver more than $330 million in property tax relief statewide.

The bill (A-302) would reimburse local governments for the approximately $331 million in “Energy Tax Receipts” that the state has consistently diverted back to the general treasury to balance its own books. The funds, which are collected by the state, are meant to reimburse municipalities for the use by utility companies of public rights-of-way and other utility infrastructure on municipal lands.

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