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

TOMORROW 5/23: Senator Pennacchio to Hold a Fusion Energy Symposium

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Sen. Joe Pennacchio will hold a symposium on fusion energy with leaders from academia and industry TOMORROW, Thursday, May 23 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the State House Annex, Committee Room 6.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio will hold a symposium on fusion energy with leaders from academia and industry at the State House Annex TOMORROW, May 23. (SenateNJ.com)

Pennacchio is a long-time advocate of the development of fusion as an energy source and has sponsored legislation in the New Jersey State Senate encouraging the support and development of fusion power.

Achieving commercial development of fusion energy would revolutionize the world economy. It would signal a new era of economic and scientific development worldwide. July 20th is the anniversary of the American achievement of landing men on the moon. What better time to assess the needs and funding for a new great achievement – by the United States, and now with other countries around the world?

Who: Senator Joe Pennacchio; experts from national laboratories, businesses, and researchers in the field who will present their work, and share their knowledge of what is being undertaken, and what lies ahead.

What: Fusion Energy Symposium – Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) will sponsor a hearing on the topic: “What are the Prospects and Requirements for the Early Development of Fusion Energy, and what are the Implications for the U.S., New Jersey, and the World?”

Where: State House Annex, Committee Room 6

When: TOMORROW, Thursday, May 23, 2019 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Bill to Expand Genetic Testing & Improve Patient Care Passes Assembly Committee

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Creates Pharmacogenomics Commission to Examine Benefits of Increasing Drug-Gene Testing in NJ

The Assembly Health & Senior Services Committee has advanced legislation sponsored Senator Joe Pennacchio creating a commission to explore how expanding pharmacogenomics, also known as “drug-gene testing,” could lead to better care and health outcomes for patients in New Jersey.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio’s legislation to explore how expanding pharmacogenomics, also known as ‘drug-gene testing,’ could lead to better care and health outcomes for patients in New Jersey has advanced in the Assembly. (©iStock)

Pharmacogenomics is the study of how a person’s genetic makeup influences the effectiveness or toxicity of medications.

“Genetic testing is already a common standard of care in cancer treatment, as genetic mutations play a role in 5 to 10 percent of all cancers. In fact, certain treatments can be tailored to match a specific mutation found in a patient’s tumor,” Senator Pennacchio (R-26) explained. “Medical professionals can also use genetic testing to treat and identify a wide variety of conditions – and prevent potentially dangerous adverse reactions or side effects to certain prescriptions.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Calls for AG Investigation Following Report that Teacher Who Inspired ‘Pass the Trash’ Law Has Been Hired – Again 

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In light of news that a New Jersey teacher who was fired from a number of schools due to allegations of inappropriate sexual behavior with children had recently been hired for yet another teaching job in New Jersey, Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) today sent a letter to State Attorney General Grewal calling for an investigation.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio has sent a letter to NJ AG Grewal requesting an investigation, in light of a May 5 NJ.com report detailing that a teacher who inspired the senator’s “pass the trash” law has been hired in New Jersey again. (©iStock)

Shawn Cier was also the subject of a previous NJ.com investigation that inspired Senator Pennacchio and his Assembly colleague Jay Webber to draft what is commonly known as the “Pass the Trash” law, which was signed into law in April of 2018 by Governor Phil Murphy.

Click here to view a PDF of Senator Pennacchio’s letter to Attorney General Grewal.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Senator Pennacchio to Hold a Fusion Energy Symposium

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Sen. Joe Pennacchio will hold a symposium on fusion energy with leaders from academia and industry at the State House Annex on Thursday, May 23.  Pennacchio is a long-time advocate of the development of fusion as an energy source and has sponsored legislation in the New Jersey State Senate encouraging the support and development of fusion power.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio will hold a symposium on fusion energy with leaders from academia and industry at the State House Annex on Thursday, May 23. (SenateNJ.com)

Achieving commercial development of fusion energy would revolutionize the world economy. It would signal a new era of economic and scientific development worldwide.  July 20th is the anniversary of the American achievement of landing men on the moon. What better time to assess the needs and funding for a new great achievement – by the United States, and now with other countries around the world?

Who: Senator Joe Pennacchio; experts from national laboratories, businesses, and researchers in the field who will present their work, and share their knowledge of what is being undertaken, and what lies ahead.

What: Fusion Energy Symposium – Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) will sponsor a hearing on the topic:  “What are the Prospects and Requirements for the Early Development of Fusion Energy, and what are the Implications for the U.S., New Jersey, and the World?”

Where: State House Annex, Committee Room 6

When: Thursday, May 23, 2019 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Statement on Anniversary of State Trooper Foerster’s Murder

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Urges Action on Legislation Calling for Cop-Killer Chesimard’s Extradition from Cuba, So Family Can Finally See Justice Done 

State Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) released the following statement marking the 46 anniversary of the brutal slaying of New Jersey State Trooper Werner Foerster, who was murdered by Joanne Chesimard on May 2, 1973.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio marks the 46th anniversary of the brutal murder of State Trooper Werner Foerster, by Joanne Chesimard who fled to Cuba for asylum where she remains today. Pennacchio sponsors legislation calling for her extradition. (FBI)

Chesimard was convicted of murdering Trooper Foerster and sentenced to life in prison, but subsequently escaped and has been living under the protection of political asylum in Cuba ever since. Senator Pennacchio has long-sponsored a bipartisan resolution calling for her extradition to the United States.

“Our hearts go out to for the Foerster family as they continue to cope with this unimaginable loss. No child should blow out a birthday candle, graduate, or walk down the aisle without their father by their side. Trooper Foerster was a pillar of strength for his family, and his brothers and sisters in arms at the State Police. That pillar crumbled 46 years ago today when Joanne Chesimard pulled the trigger.

“That convicted killer belongs in jail, and justice will not be served until we bring her back to serve out her sentence. Clearly, we cannot count on Cuba to take action. We must do the right thing and demand her extradition now.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Editorial: Our School Plan Will Lower Taxes and Make Every Child Count, Republican Legislator Says

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The following editorial by Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) detailing the new Senate Republican school funding reform plan, “Every Child Counts” was published on April 17, 2019 on NJ.com.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio’s editorial detailing the new Senate Republican school funding reform plan, Every Child Counts, was published on April 17, 2019 on NJ.com. (Wikimedia Commons)

For far too long, children and taxpayers around New Jersey have been the victims of an unfair school funding formula that punishes kids, simply because they live in the wrong zip code. This has to end. I believe that every child deserves the same opportunity to get a great education, regardless of where they live.

That’s why I was proud to stand at a State House press conference recently with my Senate Republican colleagues, school district superintendents, and education advocates to unveil a new, comprehensive school funding reform proposal to fix this problem, once and for all.

This new legislative package is intended to fix an inefficient and unfair process for funding education that fails students and taxpayers in all types of communities across New Jersey.

Our “Every Child Counts” plan provides for a more equitable distribution of State school funding to every child, every year.

We believe the reforms we have proposed will lower property taxes, improve the quality of education in our classrooms, and protect New Jersey’s most vulnerable children.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio: NJ’s Autism Rates Prove We Need a Better Way to Fund Special Education

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In light of the release of a new CDC report showing that the rate of 4-year-old children diagnosed with autism in New Jersey has spiked by 43 percent, Senator Pennacchio is again calling on Legislative Leaders to embrace the Senate Republican school funding reform plan, “Every Child Counts,” which features a better way to fund special education costs Statewide.

In light of new CDC reports showing that certain child autism rates in New Jersey have spiked by 43 percent, Sen. Pennacchio is again calling on Legislative Leaders to embrace the “Every Child Counts” school funding reform plan. (©iStock)

“The fact that more and more kids are being diagnosed with autism in New Jersey is a clear indicator that we have to come up with a better way to fund special education in this state,” Pennacchio said. “Right now, kids with autism or other challenges receive a varying degree of financial support, based on their zip code. That’s wrong. Every child counts. We need a school funding plan that will ensure that all students have the opportunity to succeed, regardless of where they live.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Calls for Hearings on Dangerous Sanctuary State Policies

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Directive Create Safe Harbor for Rapists and Murderers

Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) called for immediate legislative hearings in response to news of the rape and murder of a New Jersey nanny, Carolina Cano, by an illegal immigrant. This comes in the wake of the State Attorney General’s “Sanctuary State” directive, which went into effect last month:

Sen. Joe Pennacchio called for immediate legislative hearings in response to news of the rape and murder of a New Jersey nanny by an illegal immigrant. (SenateNJ.com)

“A nanny was brutally strangled, raped, and tossed into a New Jersey lake by someone who shouldn’t even have been in the country in the first place,” Pennacchio said. “The administration’s dangerous Sanctuary State policy encourages illegal immigrants to seek harbor within our state’s borders.

“My legislation would ensure local law enforcement cooperate with federal authorities to stop these criminals from putting our residents in danger. For the safety of our families, I am calling for immediate legislative hearings to assess these alarming policies. We cannot turn a blind eye to those who have no respect for U.S. law or the sanctity of human life.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio: Democrats Must Condemn Cop Killer Chesimard

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Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) released the following statement in response to reports that a summit attended by a number of prominent elected officials, including New Jersey’s own U.S. Senator Cory Booker, opened with chants praising convicted cop-killer Joanne Chesimard.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio released the following statement in response to reports that a summit attended by a number of prominent elected officials, including New Jersey’s own U.S. Senator Cory Booker, opened with chants praising convicted cop-killer Joanne Chesimard. (FBI)

Pennacchio has been a vocal advocate for the return of Chesimard. He and fellow Senate Republican, Sen. Anthony Bucco (R-25) have long sponsored a State Senate resolution, SR-15, urging Chesimard’s extradition from Cuba.

“Joanne Chesimard is a domestic terrorist and the convicted murderer of New Jersey State Trooper Werner Foerster,” Pennacchio said. “I stand with the New Jersey State Police and wholeheartedly condemn anyone who has the gall to glorify a cop killer.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio: Governor Should Focus on Growing Jobs, Not Weed

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Senator Urges Murphy to Focus on the Economy, in light of reports that NJ lost 7,700 jobs last month

In light of recent reports highlighting New Jersey’s continued economic decline, Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) today urged Governor Phil Murphy to stop pushing to legalize pot and start pushing for job creation.

Pennacchio’s call for action follows news that New Jersey lost 7,700 jobs in February, according to new data by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. New Jersey also lost at least 2,300 jobs in December of 2018 alone.

Additionally, this week the NJBIA released their 2019 Climate Analysis, which indicated that New Jersey continues to have the worst business climate, highest property taxes, highest sales tax, and highest income tax in the region.

In light of recent reports highlighting New Jersey’s continued economic decline, Sen. Joe Pennacchio today urged Gov. Murphy to stop pushing to legalize pot and start pushing for job creation. (Wikimedia)

“The cost of doing business in New Jersey is spiraling out of control and we are losing good-paying jobs left and right,” Senator Pennacchio said. “At a time when nationally, unemployment has reached historic lows, New Jersey lost more than 10,000 jobs in December and February alone. We cannot turn a blind eye to the bleak economic indicators highlighted in these reports. New Jersey business owners don’t need us to legalize weed – they need this administration to stop vilifying and punishing them with regulations and high taxes.

“Governor Murphy needs to wake up and face the facts. Let’s stop the push for pot and start promoting practical policies that will create jobs and encourage more innovators to set up shop in the Garden State.”

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