Constituent Newsletters

Hurricane Sandy Resource Center

As New Jersey recovers from the devastation of Hurricane Sandy, families and communities will have many different needs. Below, please find a compilation of the resources that may be most helpful to you and your family. As always, please feel free to contact our office at (856) 435-1247 if we may be of assistance to you.

Protect Yourself from Disaster-Related Scams

The New Jersey Department of Consumer Affairs has released information on how residents can protect themselves from disaster-related scams in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Check out their helpful one-page flyer by clicking here, and protect yourself.

Tips on How to File an Insurance Claim

Here are several articles that provide tips on how to file an insurance claim, if your property was damaged by the storm:

CBS video: MoneyWatch editor-at-large Jill Schlesinger walks you through how to file an insurance claim

CBS Moneywatch: 7 Insurance Tips to Deal with Sandy

CNN Money: What to do if Sandy flooded your car

Election Information

We have heard from many individuals who are concerned they will have trouble voting this Election Day because of the damage of the storm.

Cracking Down on Bullying in Our Schools (Dec. '10 Constituent Newsletter)

By Assemblywoman Pam Lampitt

Bullies and bullying are, to most, a familiar topic. Growing up, many of us have heard stories of our friends or people we know being bullied or maybe even been bullied ourselves. Whatever the case may be, bullying is not just “kids being kids” or a comedic portrayal of a child getting his lunch money stolen on a sitcom. Bullying has become much more serious—with the potential for tragic and deadly consequences for our children.

Recent news articles from across the country have recounted time and time again truly heartbreaking stories about teenagers harming themselves or others, or even taking their own lives because of the bullying they face. In New Jersey, the tragic story of Rutgers University freshman Tyler Clementi—who leapt off the George Washington Bridge to his death after having an intimate moment unknowingly filmed and broadcast over the Internet by others—has given this issue painfully local resonance.

The Assembly has heard hours of testimony from bullying victims describing the cruel abuse they have endured at the hands of bullies. Too-often, incidents of serious bullying in our schools go undetected or unaddressed. It is clear that the state’s current laws on bullying have not worked, and that is why I am a primary sponsor of A-3466, the Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights.

Back to Work NJ: Leading the Way to Create Jobs (Dec. '10 Constituent Newsletter)

By Senator Jim Beach, Assemblyman Lou Greenwald & Assemblywoman Pam Lampitt

Recently, Democrats in the Legislature announced “Back to Work NJ”—a legislative package to create jobs, help small businesses and families, and stimulate New Jersey’s economy. Assemblyman Greenwald has been at the forefront of leadership on this issue, sponsoring many of these bills and chairing multiple hearings to consider this package of job-creation and economic development bills.

Astoundingly, some have argued that working to create jobs and help businesses grow should be on the backburner in Trenton. With unemployment over 9% in New Jersey, we could not disagree more. Now is the time to take bold, smart action to create jobs and put New Jerseyans back to work, and that is exactly what what we are doing – with 30 bills ready to be voted on by the full Assembly and Senate.

Each of us has sponsored major measures in this 30-bill job-creation package, which have already been approved by committees in the Assembly and the Senate. Most of these initiatives have received bipartisan support and cooperation. We call on Governor Christie to support them. In the upcoming weeks, we will provide you with detailed updates on these proposals to create jobs. Working together, we can create jobs and jump-start New Jersey’s economy.

Honoring the Families of Fallen Soldiers—It’s About Time! (Dec. '10 Constituent Newsletter)

By Senator Jim Beach

Last month I participated in an event that broke my heart. On a beautiful Sunday afternoon, I stood alongside Assemblywoman Pam Lampitt, Cherry Hill Mayor Bernie Platt and several County officials as we dedicated – in memoriam – Jeremy Kane Park.

The park, situated across the street from Cherry Hill’s Bret Harte Elementary School, is always bustling. On any given day, at any given time, you will find children of all ages, parents, grandparents and even the occasional puppy swinging, climbing and sliding with joy. But on this particular afternoon, the mood was far more somber as we remembered one particular young man who grew up playing in that park: Lance Cpl. Jeremy Kane, a 2006 graduate of Cherry Hill High School-East, killed last January by a suicide bomb attack in Afghanistan at the age of 22.

As I listened to Jeremy’s mother, Melinda, reflect on her son’s enthusiasm and love for life, I was humbled. It is impossible to understand her pain, or the pain that Jeremy’s two younger brothers now feel. All we can do is honor them. Just as Jeremy sacrificed for his country, so too has his family. Just as he exhibited bravery, so have they.

No one understands that better than Judi Tapper, President of the New Jersey Gold Star Mothers, who also joined us that day. For years, Judi has fought to add New Jersey among the list of states that recognize the families of our fallen heroes with a Gold Star Family licensed plate.

Governor’s “Toolkit” is Not the Silver Bullet for Property Taxes (Dec. '10 Constituent Newsletter)

By Senator Jim Beach, Assemblyman Lou Greenwald & Assemblywoman Pam Lampitt

Several months ago, Governor Christie unveiled a package of legislative proposals which he described as a “toolkit” for local governments and school districts to keep down property taxes, now that New Jersey has a historic 2% cap on property taxes. We have held numerous hearings and closely studied these measures—listening to you, the taxpayers, as we evaluated the Governor’s so-called “toolkit.” As a result, we have passed many of these proposals and sent them to the Governor’s desk in 2010.

We have approached these complex pieces legislation thoughtfully and deliberately. On some issues—including a bill to cut government spending by streamlining the sample ballot process—the Governor has agreed with our ideas. On others, including arbitration reform, we have worked together productively toward bipartisan compromise. As a result, true arbitration reform will be signed into law today.

For some issues, such as civil service reform and cracking down on taxpayer-funded “golden parachutes” for unused sick leave, we continue to negotiate with the Governor and work toward the best possible compromise for the families of New Jersey.