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.
The New Jersey Senate overwhelming passed legislation (S-1675) sponsored by Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove that would require at least two regular meetings each year of the New Jersey Turnpike Authority to be held on a rotating basis in Ocean County, Atlantic County, and Cape May County.
The 9th District legislators issued the following statement on the Senate’s passage of the legislation:
“Holding meetings in the southern end of the state will allow the Turnpike Authority the opportunity to get a better understanding of local residents’ concerns with respect to the transportation projects. Residents who use the Garden State Parkway, especially those with long commutes, want to ensure that the hard-earned money they pay in tolls is not only being effectively utilized but that their area of the state is getting its fair share of funding for needed infrastructure improvements.
The Senate overwhelmingly passed legislation sponsored by Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove which would grant priority in registering for courses at a public institution of higher education to military service members and veterans living in the state.
Connors, Rumpf and Gove have joined with the 1st Legislative District in this bipartisan veterans’ legislative initiative (S-1672 and A-2950) entitled the “Combat to College Act.” The 9th District delegation issued the following statement following the Senate passage of the veterans’ legislative initiative.
“Veterans’ deserve every opportunity to pursue their higher education goals. Higher education policies should be in place to provide special accommodations for veterans’ due to the significant demands associated with military service, including long-term deployments.
Legislation sponsored by Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove that would require at least two regular meetings each year of the New Jersey Turnpike Authority to be held on a rotating basis in Ocean County, Atlantic County, and Cape May County was released by the Senate Transportation Committee.
The 9th District delegation issued the following the remarks regarding the legislation’s (S-1675) advancement:
“Regular meetings of the Authority are currently held on a monthly basis in the Authority’s Administration Offices located in Woodbridge. To many, this is seen as a slight given the amount of tolls residents living in South Jersey pay on the Garden State Parkway and Atlantic City Expressway.
“The legislation is a bipartisan collaborative effort that we have undertaken with Senator Jeff Van Drew and the First District Assembly delegation with the intent that residents would be better served by having the opportunity to attend locally-held Turnpike Authority meetings and participate in the decision making process regarding projects affecting their communities and commutes.
“Understandably, this is an issue of interest to residents living in an area that has been severely under-resourced in terms of transportation dollars for decades. Holding meetings in south Jersey would be even more appropriate given the number of projects that are finally in the works to address the inadequacy of the area’s infrastructure.”
The legislation would also require one regular meeting of the Authority be held in Bergen County and at least one meeting be held in Salem, Gloucester, and Camden counties on a rotating basis.