New Jersey's 26th Legislative District

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Cross Section of Municipalities Endorse Pennacchio’s ‘Transparency in Government Act’

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State Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Morris/Passaic/Essex) released a list of New Jersey municipalities who have endorsed S-302. The “Transparency in Government Act” would expand on and codify the State public finance website which retains and displays data and information on annual revenues, expenditures and total bonded indebtedness.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio: Boxer’s Report on Colleges Shows Need for ‘Transparency in Government Act’

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Senator Joe Pennacchio, R-Essex, Morris, Passaic, renews his call for this legislature to pass the “Transparency in Government Act” to prevent abusive spending of public moneys by New Jersey’s community colleges, as detailed in state Comptroller Boxer’s report released Thursday.

“Comptroller Boxer has found deeply troubling levels of arbitrary, wasteful spending that New Jersey’s community colleges are getting away with,” Pennacchio said. “The ‘Transparency in Government Act’ would make community colleges and other entities own up to this abuse in the public eye and report spending to the state Treasurer, making people immediately aware of college presidents being reimbursed for country club memberships, spouse’s travel or $400 lobster dinners.”

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Senator Anthony Bucco
Senator Joe Pennacchio
Senator Steve Oroho

UI Solvency, Private Sector Job Growth Show New Jersey’s Economy on Right Track

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Following testimony from Labor Commissioner Harold Wirths before the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee, Senators Anthony Bucco, Kevin O’Toole, Steven Oroho, Joe Pennacchio, and Jennifer Beck remarked that the labor indicators presented to the committee show a marked turnaround for the state’s long term economic health.

Senator Anthony Bucco (R-Morris), Republican Budget Officer:

The Administration is to be applauded for putting the state’s unemployment insurance fund on the path to solvency more quickly than anyone expected. Through a combination of tax reforms, efficiencies, and aggressive prosecution of fraud and abuse, this Governor has fixed the mess he inherited as a result of years of diversions and fiscal irresponsibility by an unchecked Democratic Majority in Trenton.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio: Landmark Benefits Reforms Are Keeping Promise to Taxpayers

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Senator Joe Pennacchio, R-Essex, Morris, Passaic, responded to encouraging news about the state pension and health benefit systems shared by New Jersey Treasurer Andrew P. Sidamon-Eristoff at today’s Senate Budget & Appropriations hearing:

“This upswing for New Jersey’s pension and health benefit systems is exactly what I envisioned when sponsoring and urging the landmark pension and health benefits reform measure adopted last year.

“If not for bipartisan reforms, the state’s retirement and health care systems would be $20 billion further in the hole, because of the past two decades of financially destructive decisions by administrations and legislatures.

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Senator Anthony Bucco
Senator Gerald Cardinale
Senator Joe Pennacchio
Senator Kip Bateman
Senator Tom Kean

Kean, O’Toole, Beck, Bateman, Bucco, Pennacchio, Cardinale and Kyrillos Send Letter to NYC Mayor Opposing Commuter Tax

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Republican Senators representing districts with large numbers of New York City commuters have sent a letter to Mayor Michael Bloomberg expressing their strong opposition to any effort to restore a .45% income tax on New Jersey commuters working in New York City.

The proposal to bring back the “commuter tax”, which was abolished in 2000, has been floated by Manhattan Borough President and 2013 Mayoral candidate Scott Stringer. Proceeds from the levy would be used to bail out the long-dysfunctional Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA).

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

O’Toole, Pennacchio: “The Numbers Don’t Lie; Local Tax Levy Hikes Slowing Under Christie”

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Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee members Kevin O’Toole (R- Essex/Bergen/Passaic) and Joe Pennacchio (R- Morris/Essex/Passaic) today said that efforts to control the cost of local government are successfully putting the brakes on property tax levy increases in New Jersey.

“Our goal remains to achieve an overall reduction in local tax levies, and we can get bipartisan support for reforming our school funding formula, ending sick leave payouts to public employees, and finishing the rest of the property tax relief toolkit,” said O’Toole. “However, the numbers clearly show we are heading the right direction and increases are slowing. After eight years of total Democratic control in Trenton during which property taxes soared by 60% despite record levels of state spending, property tax levies are leveling off under reforms like Cap 2.0 championed by the Governor and Republicans in the Legislature.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio: Limo Co. Struggles Show Higher Taxes Kill Jobs, Hurt Middle Class

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Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Essex,Morris,Passaic) was sickened to learn of the struggles of New Jersey’s limousine businesses, as discussed during today’s state Sales and Use Tax Review Commission meeting.

Since a widespread sales-tax-hike gimmick was implemented and authorized by Democrats to balance the state’s FY 2007 budget, one-third of New Jersey’s limousine businesses have closed and 7,000 related jobs have been lost, according to testimony quoted by PolitickerNJ.

“This is just one troubling example of how increasing taxes can crumble our state’s economy,” Pennacchio said. “During the majority party’s reign of total control last decade, they enacted several hikes that made it more expensive to run businesses here compared to neighboring states, took more income from employers, killed jobs and burdened consumers.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Lauds Federal Ruling on Benefits Reform

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Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-Morris/Essex/Passaic) applauds Monday’s U.S. District Court ruling, dismissing several New Jersey unions’ attempts to avoid their part in necessary benefits reform.

“Judge Anne Thompson’s decision is in the best interests of taxpayers and our pension systems,” Pennacchio said.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio and Kyrillos Submit Resolution Urging White House to Reverse Contraception Mandate for Religious Organizations

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Senators Joseph Pennacchio and Joe Kyrillos have formally submitted for the Senate’s consideration a resolution urging the Obama Administration to reverse its controversial health care mandate that would force Catholic institutions to violate their beliefs and pay for birth control.

“The so-called accommodation announced by the White House last week changes nothing, as Catholic hospitals and charities would still be forced to underwrite the cost of providing medical services that violate their beliefs,” said Pennacchio (R- Morris/Essex/Passaic). “This is a violation of a founding principle of this country that guarantees religious freedom and liberty to all creeds irrespective of the majority’s opinion about their beliefs.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio: “Democrats’ ‘Top Legislative Priority’?”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio (R- Morris/Essex/Passaic) issued the following statement in advance of the Senate’s consideration of S-1, the “Marriage Equality and Religious Exemption Act”:

Today, the Senate will consider a piece of legislation that has zero chance of becoming law.

The bill’s sponsors have told us that public opinion justifies the Senate passing a bill that will not become law. If poll data is now driving the Senate’s agenda, Senator Bateman’s constitutional amendment placing same sex marriage before the voters should be scheduled for a vote, as it enjoys majority public support.

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