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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