New Jersey's 26th Legislative District

Senator Joe Pennacchio

  • Sen. Joe Pennacchio watches as Gov. Chris Christie signs his legislation at the African American Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey headquarters in Trenton, N.J. on Jan. 4. (Full Story)

  • Sen. Joe Pennacchio (R-26) speaking at a New Jersey State House press conference on S-2026, the “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” on December 5, 2016. (Full Story)

  • Sen. Joe Pennacchio received the “Alex DeCroce Public Leadership Award” at the Morris County Chamber of Commerce’s 2015 Annual Economic Outlook Luncheon. (Full Story)

  • Sen. Joe Pennachcio joined Republican colleagues and state business leaders representing thousands of employers at a State House press conference on June 22, 2015 to oppose job-killing income and business tax increases proposed by Democrats. (Facebook)

  • Sen. Joe Pennacchio (right) presented the Morris County Distinguished Service WWII Medal to John Tullio (center), pictured with Fred Fucetola (left). (Facebook)

  • Sen. Joe Pennacchio speaking as a panelist with The African American Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey at The State of Black New Jersey Conference on April 16, 2015. Also pictured are Asw. BettyLou DeCroce and Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean. (Facebook)

  • Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) discussing bi-state DRPA reform legislation during a press conference with Pennsylvania officials in front of the Ben Franklin Bridge in Camden, NJ on April 24, 2014. (Press Release)

  • Senator Joe Pennacchio took the oath of office during the reorganization meeting of the 2014-2015 New Jersey Senate on January 14, 2014 to represent the people of the 26th Legislative District. (Facebook)

  • Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) addresses a speaker during a Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee public hearing on the fiscal year 2014 State Budget on Tuesday, March 5, 2013. (Patti Sapone/The Star-Ledger)

  • Maritza B. Byrne was confirmed by the New Jersey Senate to be a Judge of the Superior Court on February 7, 2013. Byrne joined Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) on the floor of the Senate for her confirmation vote.

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Urges NJDEP to Release Lake Closure Documents

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Letter to Commissioner Follows Denial of OPRA Request for Information Related to HAB Advisories for Lake Hopatcong & Greenwood Lake

Senator Joe Pennacchio sent a letter to the Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) today urging the release of documents related to harmful algal bloom (HAB) advisories that closed Lake Hopatcong and other New Jersey waterways to recreation for much of the summer.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio sent a letter to the NJDEP urging the release of documents related to harmful algal bloom advisories that closed Lake Hopatcong and other New Jersey waterways to recreation for much of the summer. (SenateNJ.com)

In the letter to NJDEP Commissioner Catherine McCabe, Pennacchio called for the release of documents that he sought through an Open Public Records Act (OPRA) request in August. The NJDEP denied the requested records, asserting they contain “deliberative material.”

“All of the impacted communities deserve to know the truth. They deserve to know if their lives and livelihoods were disrupted as a result of a legitimate public health concern or for politics,” Pennacchio said in the letter. “Put simply, the NJDEP’s ‘deliberations’ on this matter are precisely what the people of our lakeside communities deserve to know.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Says Court Ruling Against Murphy Confirms NJ Must Lower Property Taxes

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Federal Judge Appointed by Obama Throws Out Frivolous SALT Lawsuit

Senator Joe Pennacchio reiterated his criticism of Governor Phil Murphy’s lawsuit against the Internal Revenue Service after it was tossed by a federal judge on Monday, saying it’s time for the Governor to focus on lowering property taxes.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio reiterated his criticism of Gov. Murphy’s lawsuit against the IRS after it was tossed by a federal judge, saying it’s time for the Gov. to focus on lowering property taxes. (Pixabay)

“Governor Murphy can join the Legislature in working to lower New Jersey property taxes, but instead he continues to waste his time, State government resources, and our tax dollars to play politics,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “Hopefully now he’ll finally realize that the solution to our state’s fiscal woes and sky high taxes isn’t suing the federal government. I urge the Governor to come to the table and have a difficult but necessary conversation on bipartisan legislative solutions that will truly make the Garden State more affordable for everyone.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio to Governor: Slow Down on Film Tax Credits

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Says Film Tax Credits Unproven, Calls Governor’s Position Inconsistent With His Effort to Limit Other Tax Incentives

Senator Joe Pennacchio said Governor Phil Murphy shouldn’t rush to expand and extend the state’s $425 million film tax credit program until it’s clear that the incentive program actually works.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio said Gov. Phil Murphy shouldn’t rush to expand and extend the state’s $425 million film tax credit program until it’s clear that the incentive program actually works. (Pixabay)

“Outside of the Hollywood lobbyists who are pushing for the film tax incentives, we have no evidence that they have helped to boost the New Jersey economy,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “Before he considers raising the $425 million cap on this relatively new program, Governor Murphy should slow down and determine if it’s working as intended.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio: Murphy’s Sanctuary State Policies Allows Sexual Predators to Roam Free

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Denounces False Promise that Directive would “protect the safety of all New Jersey residents”

Senator Joe Pennacchio condemned Governor Murphy’s sanctuary state policies that resulted in the release from county jail of an illegal immigrant who was arrested for sexual assault of a minor, despite a detainer request by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). A directive from the Attorney General has prohibited local law enforcement agencies from working with federal immigration authorities.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio condemned Gov. Murphy’s sanctuary state policies that resulted in the release of an illegal immigrant who was arrested for sexual assault of a minor, despite a detainer request by ICE. (SenateNJ.com)

When the “Immigrant Trust Directive” was announced, Attorney General Grewal was quoted as saying the directive was “fair and welcoming” and would “protect the safety of all New Jersey residents.”

Pennacchio also reasserted his call to mandate Megan’s Law registration for all sexual offenders regardless of where the crime was committed, and would require local police to cooperate with federal law enforcement in sexual abuse cases.

“We have a sexual predator on the run due to Governor Murphy’s dangerous sanctuary state policies,” said Pennacchio (R-26) said. “It’s absurd that we now have a federal manhunt for an accused child rapist simply because the jail wasn’t allowed hold him for ICE under orders from the Murphy Administration.”

“Thanks to the governor, New Jersey is ‘fair and welcoming’ to illegal immigrants who commit heinous crimes but not federal authorities trying to keep us safe. I call on Governor Murphy to stop giving safe harbor to criminals and to start prioritizing the public safety of New Jersey families.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio
Senator Steve Oroho

Pennacchio & Oroho Tour Lake Hopatcong with Senate President Sweeney

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Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) and Senator Steven Oroho (R-24) joined Senate President Stephen Sweeney (D-3) for a boat tour of Lake Hopatcong today to gain a first-hand understanding of the blue-green algae blooms that caused the lake and others across New Jersey to be closed for recreation for much of the summer.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio and Sen. Steven Oroho joined Senate President Stephen Sweeney for a boat tour of Lake Hopatcong today. (SenateNJ.com)

After the tour, Pennacchio and Oroho issued the following statement:

“We were glad to have the opportunity to join local officials and the Senate President for today’s tour of Lake Hopatcong. Before his untimely death, our dear colleague Senator Bucco was scheduled to join us. We are sure Tony was there in spirit.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Condemns Selective Outrage by Senate Democrats on Racism & Discrimination

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Senator Joe Pennacchio said a resolution (SR-155) adopted by Senate Democrats condemning certain comments by the President as racist is a demonstration of utter hypocrisy.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio said a resolution adopted by Senate Democrats condemning certain comments by the President as racist is a demonstration of utter hypocrisy.(SenateNJ.com)

“We have numerous examples of elected Democrats at all levels of government making comments which are clearly discriminatory, and in some cases blatantly anti-Semitic,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “Where’s the official condemnation?”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Seeks to Make NJ a Leader in Fusion Energy

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Introduces Bill Package to Support Research & Commercialization of Fusion Energy Technology

Senator Joe Pennacchio has introduced a bipartisan package of legislation to make New Jersey a global leader of fusion energy research and the development of commercial technology to bring fusion power to market, saying it represents a rare opportunity for the business and environmental communities to work together.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio’s package of bills would make New Jersey a global leader of fusion energy research and the development of commercial technology to bring fusion power to market. (SenateNJ.com)

“After bringing together and listening to experts in the field of fusion energy, it’s clear that the development and commercialization of this clean, sustainable source of power would revolutionize the way the world thinks about energy,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “As the home of the Princeton Plasma Physics Lab and a growing ecosystem of start-ups that are looking to bring fusion power to market, New Jersey has a real opportunity to be a global leader in fusion energy technology. It’s wholly apparent that some prudent moves by the State to support this industry in its infancy could yield massive dividends for our residents and New Jersey’s future. Just as California has its Silicon Valley, New Jersey could have its Fusion Epicenter if we play our cards right.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio: Murphy Administration Refuses to Share Docs Detailing Rationale for Closing NJ Lakes

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NJDEP Denies OPRA Request for Information Related to HAB Advisories for Lake Hopatcong & Greenwood Lake

Senator Joe Pennacchio said the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) has denied legal requests for public records related to the decision to issue advisories for Lake Hopatcong and Greenwood Lake for harmful algal blooms (HAB), lending credence to the suggestion that the Murphy Administration intentionally utilized the local economic pressures associated with lake closures to create a false sense of urgency for nearby communities to create expensive new stormwater utilities permitted through the “rain tax” recently enacted by the Governor.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio said the Murphy Administration’s refusal to release records related to the effective closure of several lakes for the summer lends credence to the suggestion that the actions were politically motivated. (SenateNJ.com)

“If the decisions to issue the advisories that have effectively closed Lake Hopatcong and other New Jersey lakes for much of the summer were based purely on public health concerns, there’s no reason for the Murphy Administration to deny public record requests for internal documents containing discussions of the rationale behind those actions,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “The fact that the Governor’s staff refuses to share the deliberative documents that we requested leads us to believe that they have something to hide. Perhaps they don’t want the public to see the political underpinnings of their economically damaging decision to close Lake Hopatcong and Greenwood Lake to recreation, unnecessarily, during prime summer months.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Calls for Enacting Important Anti-Bullying Legislation

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After a recent television news investigation into school bullying found the danger may be more prevalent than state statistics show, Senator Joe Pennacchio urged the General Assembly to pass his Mallory’s Law legislation bolstering New Jersey’s anti-bullying statutes.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio is calling for the enactment of “Mallory’s Law” to toughen NJ’s anti-bullying laws. Pictured: the Senate honors Mallory’s Army on Dec. 18, 2017 for its fight against bullying. (SenateNJ.com)

The News 12 New Jersey report indicates school districts may be significantly under-reporting bullying cases. One district reported nine incidents to the state in three years, while school board minutes showed 27 in the same period.

“We need to stop this nonsense and prevent the under-reporting of bullying that is going on, and my bill will help do that,” said Pennacchio, whose bipartisan bill (S3433) passed the Senate in June with unanimous support, although the Assembly version has not moved. “We’re going to force schools to keep better records.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Votes Against Flawed Vote-by-Mail Bill

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Democrats Block Amendment to Prevent Voter Fraud

Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) voted against flawed vote-by-mail legislation today saying the measure fails to address the significant issue of voter fraud.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio voted against flawed vote-by-mail legislation saying the measure fails to address the significant issue of voter fraud, including voting by illegal aliens. (SenateNJ.com)

“The vote-by-mail expansion that we were here to fix was flawed for more reasons than those recently identified by the Secretary of State,” said Pennacchio. “Voter fraud is very real in New Jersey, and much of that fraud centers on ballots not cast in a polling place. This legislation does nothing to prevent illegal aliens from voting or to stop campaign operatives from illegally registering people, collecting ballots, and rigging elections.”

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