9th District Delegation Expresses Profound Sorrow at the Passing of Former Senator Leonard T. Connors, Jr.
“We’ve lost a great man.”
Former 9th District Senator and Surf City Mayor Leonard T. Connors Jr. passed away last night at the age of 87, surrounded by family.
Senator Leonard Connors served as Mayor of Surf City from 1966 to 2015 and began serving the first of his two terms as a member of the Ocean County Board of Chosen Freeholders in 1977. He was a former director of the National Association of Coastal Mayors and served as a director for the United Way campaign.
Legislation now signed into law will direct more than $39 million to finance clean water and drinking water projects in the 9th Legislative District announced Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove.
One enacted initiative appropriates certain federal and State monies to implement the 2016 New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Financing Program. The second initiative authorizes the New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Trust to expend up to $411.35 million and any unexpended balances from previous authorizations to make loans for environmental infrastructure projects for FY2017.
“Protecting drinking water supplies is a core responsibility of government that affects every resident living in the state. Further, clean water projects are essential to protect wildlife habitats as well as the health of our waterways.
Senate Passes 9th District-Supported Bill Requiring Pledge Of Allegiance & U.S. Flag At All Public Meetings
The Senate passed legislation (S-308) sponsored Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove that would require all public bodies to recite the Pledge of Allegiance and to display the Unites States flag under the Open Public Meetings Act at the beginning of meetings.
The 9th District delegation made the following remarks in response to the Senate’s action:
“The Pledge of Allegiance and the U.S. Flag hold great meaning for many of our constituents, especially those who served and are serving in the Armed Forces as well as their families.
“Concerns were raised that, despite all the laws we have on the books, current law doesn’t require public bodies to recite the Pledge of Allegiance or to display the U.S. flag, although the overwhelming majority of public bodies do both voluntarily.
Connors-Rumpf-Gove Supported Measure Requiring South Jersey Representation on Turnpike Authority Advances
Bipartisan legislation sponsored by the 9th District legislative delegation requiring at least one member of the New Jersey Turnpike Authority to be from South Jersey was approved by the Senate Transportation Committee.
The measure, S-1674, sponsored by Senator Christopher J. Connors, would require at least one member of the Turnpike Authority be a resident of Ocean, Atlantic, or Cape May County. Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove are prime sponsors of the identical companion measure, A-3817, which is awaiting action by the Assembly Transportation and Independent Authorities Committee.
Citing a recent NJTV report, Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove lambasted comments made by certain legislators demanding that rail projects in North Jersey get top billing for new revenue generated from the recent gas tax increase.
Connors, Rumpf and Gove made the following remarks in response to the report:
“This media report just confirms what our delegation said from the beginning, motorists paying this unconscionable tax increase would be forced to watch as the revenue is funneled to North Jersey mass transit projects. This was one of the many reasons why our delegation vehemently opposed and voted against the gas tax increase legislation and, moreover, why we were extremely disappointed that Governor Christie signed it.
Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove announced plans to introduce legislation to provide for a gross income tax deduction on fuel taxes paid by motorists for their personal vehicles.
Under the 9th District delegation’s proposal, the gross income deduction would be capped at $1,000 for 2016 and then increased to $2,000 for 2017.
Connors, Rumpf and Gove issued the following statement regarding their tax-credit proposal:
“From day one, our delegation vehemently opposed increasing the gas tax. In representing the interests our constituents, we voted ‘NO’ when the gas tax increase bill was presented on the floor of our respective houses for a final vote. Needless to say, we are extremely disappointed that the Governor signed the legislation.
Consistent with the principled position their delegation has maintained since day one, Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove voted against increasing the gas tax by 23 cents per gallon.
Both houses of the New Jersey Legislature convened on Friday, October 7th at the State House in Trenton to vote on the gas tax proposal. While tax cuts were included in the proposal, the 9th District delegation voted ‘NO’ in representing the interests of the overwhelming majority of their constituents who supported reductions in government spending as a more effective alternative than increasing yet another tax.
Connors, Rumpf and Gove issued the following statement on the gas tax increase vote:
“The entire charade leading up to the gas tax increase has been a disgrace and an insult to the working class commuters who will be forced to bail out the state. For us, this scheme never passed the smell test. Regardless of the political pressure, we would never sell out our constituents and, accordingly, we didn’t hesitate to break with the Governor on this tax increase.
The General Assembly passed legislation sponsored and supported by the 9th District legislative delegation that would designate the week of September 17 through September 23 of each year as “Constitution Week” to remember and honor the signing of the Constitution of the United States of America on September 17, 1787. This would correlate with the national week as established by Congress in 1956.
The joint resolution (AJR-72) is supported by Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove is also part of an effort to raise public awareness of the important role the Constitution plays in the lives of American citizens.
Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove are calling for the reinstatement of SouthSTAR, the unit of the Jersey Emergency Medical Shock Trauma Air Rescue providing emergency transport to southern New Jersey for trauma patients through the use of medically-equipped helicopters.
Connors, Rumpf and Gove sent the following letter to New Jersey Department of Health Commissioner Cathleen D. Bennett regarding SouthSTAR and the delegation’s deepening concern that South Jersey residents are being treated disparately as compared to North Jersey residents:
Seeing right through the political rhetoric and special interest gamesmanship, Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove oppose the regressive and unconscionable 23 cent per gallon increase in the state gas tax.
Connors, Rumpf and Gove made the following remarks regarding their opposition to the proposed gas tax increase:
“Simply stated, the majority of our constituents cannot afford an excessive gas tax increase and still pay their bills. They’ve seen enough of Trenton shell games to know when the state is trying to sell them snake oil, even when it’s a gas tax increase. The whole situation just doesn’t pass the smell test.