Sweeney, Ruiz, Downey & Houghtaling Unveil Initiative To Fully Fund NJ Schools


Commission Will Develop Five-Year Reform Plan To Close Gap That Now Leaves 80 Percent of Districts Underfunded

Citing the state's continued underfunding of 80 percent of New Jersey's school districts, Senate President Steve Sweeney, Assemblywoman Joann Downey and Assemblyman Eric Houghtaling today unveiled legislation to create a special commission to develop a school funding reform plan to bring all districts to full funding within five years. Senator M. Teresa Ruiz, chairwoman of the Senate Education Committee, is a cosponsor of the bill.

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Democrats Announce Plan to Make School Funding Equitable


When the school funding formula was established in 2008, the idea was for the money to follow the child. But what’s developed instead is a system that’s allowed nearly half of the state’s 600 school districts to become chronically underfunded.

“We have some school districts that are receiving three times the amount of aid than they should be and some towns receiving one-third of the aid that they should be. This means some towns are paying 50 percent more in property taxes than they should be and some are paying 50 percent less,” said Senate President Steve Sweeney.

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NJ Considers Measure to Help Babies, Parents Rest Easy


After a study found that some baby monitors sending live audio and video feeds over the internet don't have adequate security protections, New Jersey lawmakers are considering a remedy.

Assemblywoman Joann Downey said hackers can access baby monitors that aren't on a secure network.

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


 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


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


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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