Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Morris/Passaic) recently appeared on Hometown on WMBC-TV with host Matt Fitzpatrick to discuss a variety of New Jersey issues, including the state budget, property taxes and healthcare.
Legislation Would Make Permanent Executive Order Signed by Governor Christie
Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Morris/Passaic) expressed his optimism today that his Transparency in Government Act would soon become law. The bill is posted for a vote this Monday in the Senate State Government, Wagering, Tourism and historic Preservation Committee, in which Senator Pennacchio plans on testifying.
“I am very grateful that one of Chris Christie’s first official acts as Governor was to issue an executive order bringing greater openness and accountability to state spending, ” Pennacchio stated. “It is now time to codify this executive order and make it an official law.”
Americans for Prosperity has given their coveted “A” rating to Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Morris/Passaic).
The rating, based on a score card for the 2008-2009 Legislative Session, recognizes Senator Pennacchio for his efforts on behalf of New Jersey taxpayers.
Senator Joe Pennacchio and Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean congratulated Governor Christie for making the Transparency in Government Act among his first Executive Orders. The Executive Order, which has the force of law, will create a searchable, easy-to-use Web site that taxpayers can use to track government spending.
“It’s been more than a year since I introduced this vitally needed legislation, yet without a full court press from former Corzine Administration, it failed to pass during the last session,” Pennacchio stated. “Today with the stroke of his pen Governor Christie made transparency in government the order of the day.”
Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Morris/Passaic) said he is “beyond frustrated” that Governor Corzine’s ‘transparency’ website isn’t user friendly for taxpayers.
“The site provides only the vaguest information on how government money is spent, and nothing on who gets the taxes and fees collected from state residents,” Pennacchio said. “It also does nothing to help taxpayers track how billions of dollars of federal aid are spent by state and local governments, who gets billions of dollars in aid to schools and municipalities, or how hundreds of millions of dollars in tolls and fees collected by sports, highway, port and bridge authorities are doled out.
Senator Joe Pennacchio, prime sponsor of the Transparency in Government Act, and Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean urged Governor Jon Corzine to use all his influence to help win passage of the Transparency in Government Act during the lame-duck session. This bill, which is also sponsored by Senate President Richard Codey, will create a searchable, easy-to-use Web site that taxpayers can use to track government spending. Governor Corzine has said in the past that he supports this bill, which cleared the Senate State Government Committee today.
“It’s been more than a year since I introduced this vitally needed legislation, yet without a full court press from Democrat leaders, its passage is far from assured during this session,” Pennacchio said. “Governor Corzine needs to use all his influence to help push this through a Legislature controlled by his party.”
Senator Joe Pennacchio congratulated Franklin Templeton Investments on its announcement of a more than 50 percent reduction in fees to parents who invest in the NJBest college savings plan. Franklin Templeton manages the state plan.
In April, Senator Pennacchio was the first state legislator to call attention, through news releases and with questioning during Senate hearings, to a Morningstar report that ranked NJBest as one of the five worst 529 college savings plans in the nation. Morningstar said the fund had high fees and overly risky investment choices. Senator Pennacchio’s crusade for working parents included meeting with Franklin Templeton representatives, who promised him they would come up with a better plan and institute it as soon as it could get it through the state bureaucracy.
The following statement was released by State Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Morris/Passaic) regarding the government takeover of health care:
“Senator Menendez, rather than showing facts to defend his support of the government takeover of health care chose instead to describe opposition as ‘fearful, partisan tactics.’ The Senator failed to mention that it is within his party’s power, the Democrats, to enact this legislation now. Unlike himself, it is ‘moderate’ members of his own party who are expressing the same concerns with this legislation as have I and countless New Jersey citizens.
The following statement was released by State Senator Joe Pennacchio (R – Morris/Passaic):
“Both Senators Lautenberg and Menendez, while blindly and enthusiastically following their party’s leadership, have failed in putting New Jersey and in particular its senior citizens first. Their vote to move the Senate’s ‘Health Care Bill’ will hurt our states finances but more importantly reduce the quality and quantity of care given to our senior citizens through Medicare.
“The bill contains $400 billion in Medicare cuts. To oversee these cuts, the Senators voted to allow a newly formed bureaucracy called the ‘Medicare Advisory Board’ to institute deep and lasting cuts to our seniors. Recently, a similar government board advised severe restrictions on mammograms. Could this be the future of health care? These cuts would be ‘automatic’ unless overruled by the same Congress which created the ‘Medicare Advisory Board’ in the first place.