New Jersey's 26th Legislative District

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Welcomes Audit of Film Tax Credit Incentives

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Senator Joe Pennacchio commended the State Auditor’s office after the release of the annual audit plan for 2020 revealed a pending review of the Garden State Film and Digital Media Jobs Act.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio lauded news of the State Auditor’s pending review of the $425 million Garden State Film and Digital Media Jobs Act. Pennacchio first called for an audit in July 2018. (Pixabay)

“The film tax credit is a significant expenditure of taxpayer money that demands scrutiny,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “The auditor has limited resources and a heavy workload. I want to thank him for listening to us and am pleased he made the commitment to review the costly program in the new year.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Resolution Seeks Washington’s Support for Fusion Energy Research

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New Jersey Positioned to be Global Leader in Safe and Clean Power Alternative

Senator Joe Pennacchio wants to help New Jersey become a global leader in clean, renewable fusion energy, and his resolution seeking federal funding for fusion research was approved by the Senate Environment and Energy Committee today.

Legislation sponsored by Sen. Pennacchio promotes the development of fusion energy as a source of clean, sustainable power. (SenateNJ.com)

“New Jersey is perfectly positioned to play a crucial role in bringing the promise of fusion energy to fruition and changing the way the world generates power,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “Our state is the home of the Princeton Plasma Physics Lab and a growing ecosystem of ambitious start-up companies determined to make fusion power a reality. Investment from the federal government aligned with some sensible moves by the State to support this promising industry could yield massive dividends for our residents and New Jersey’s future.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Urges Governor’s Swift Approval of Greenwood Lake Funding

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After the closure of Greenwood Lake this summer due to a toxic algae bloom, Senator Joe Pennacchio called for Governor Murphy to immediately enact his legislation that would create and annually dedicate half-a-million dollars to the New Jersey Greenwood Lake Fund.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio urges Gov. Murphy to swiftly approve State funding for Greenwood Lake. (GoogleMaps)

“I am thrilled to see our bipartisan bill to safeguard one of Passaic County’s most popular and scenic waterways clear the final legislative hurdle,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “Establishing an annual, permanent state funding source goes hand-in-hand with all of our local and county efforts to protect and maintain Greenwood Lake. I urge Governor Murphy to sign this into law as soon as possible to ensure that generations of New Jerseyans can enjoy this beautiful waterway for years to come.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Welcomes Changes to Independent Contractor Legislation

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Says Amendments Must Address Concerns Raised by Freelancers

Senator Joe Pennacchio today welcomed word that changes would be made to legislation that had threatened to devastate the State’s thriving gig economy and the workers who rely on it.

Proposed legislation (S4204) threatened to reclassify independent workers as employees. After statewide reaction to possible devastating consequences, the Senate President announced his intention to amend the legislation to limit the impact on freelancers.

Sen. Pennacchio said amendments to independent contractor legislation are needed to protect the interests of freelance workers. (Flickr)

“A lot of hard-working people dodged a bullet here. I commend the Senate President for listening to the pleas of service providers, ranging from delivery drivers to highly skilled professionals, who enjoy the freedom, autonomy, and opportunity of working when they want, where they want.

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Vindicated After Meeting with Governor & State Officials About Response to Algal Blooms on NJ Lakes

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Senator Joe Pennacchio said he felt vindicated after meeting today with Governor Phil Murphy, officials from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, and other elected state and federal officeholders to discuss the State’s response to algal blooms on New Jersey lakes.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio said he felt vindicated after meeting with Gov. Phil Murphy, officials from the NJDEP, and other elected state and federal officeholders to discuss the State’s response to algal blooms on New Jersey lakes. (SenateNJ.com)

“New Jersey lakes were closed this summer I believe due to faulty NJDEP protocols that were based on political science rather than actual science,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “Governor Murphy’s commitment to us today to reevaluate the State’s approach to preventing, monitoring, and communicating with the public about harmful algal blooms is welcomed and represents a total validation of the concerns we raised on behalf of families and businesses that were devastated by this summer’s unnecessary lake closures.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Applauds Advancement of Greenwood Lake Funding

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Senator Joe Pennacchio commended the Assembly Appropriations Committee for approving legislation that will preserve and protect Greenwood Lake.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio commended the Assembly Appropriations Committee for approving legislation that will preserve and protect Greenwood Lake. (GoogleMaps)

“Following the very trying summer for Greenwood Lake residents and businesses, the advancement of this State funding is a sign of hope,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “While the algae bloom had a devastating effect on the local economy, the approval of this legislation is the heartening step that recognizes that the State of New Jersey must prioritize funding to safeguard one of Passaic County’s most popular and scenic waterways, rather than let the expense fall on the backs of the local residents and business owners.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Bill Gives Zero Emission Cars a Charge

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New Jersey drivers will find it easier to plug in their electric cars under legislation introduced Thursday by Senator Joe Pennacchio. His bill, S4222, simplifies the approval process for installing charging stations at gasoline service stations.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio’s bill simplifies the approval process for installing electric charging stations at gasoline service stations. (SenateNJ.com)

Under the bill, electric installations at existing operating gas stations are exempt from local approvals, including site plan and land use reviews. New gas stations would also be exempt.

“We have 565 municipalities in the state and the last thing we need is 565 different rules for gas stations adding charging facilities,” said Pennacchio (R-26).

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Senator Joe Pennacchio
Senator Steve Oroho
Senator Tom Kean

Oroho, Kean & Pennacchio Call for Creation of Office of Labor Law Enforcement

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Would Oversee & Coordinate Enforcement of State Labor Laws

Senators Steven Oroho, Tom Kean, and Joe Pennacchio called for the swift passage of legislation they sponsor that would protect workers, honest businesses, and taxpayers from the wide-ranging impacts of illegal labor practices.

Sens. Steven Oroho, Tom Kean, and Joe Pennacchio called for the passage of legislation they sponsor creating the Office of Labor Law Enforcement to crack down on illegal labor practices. (Pixabay)

“Companies that employ fraudulent work practices shouldn’t be allowed to profit, especially with public dollars,” said Oroho, who serves as the Senate Republican Budget Officer. “When we hear talk of a ‘stronger and fairer economy’ we should be doing all we can to close loopholes to prevent bad actors from abusing the system to the detriment of workers, taxpayers, and the State treasury.”

The legislation, S-3954, would establish the Office of Labor Law Enforcement to oversee, evaluate, and coordinate enforcement activities of the department regarding violations of the provisions of labor laws. The new office would be created within the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

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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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