Assemblywoman Pam Lampitt talks about her efforts to reduce bullying in schools.
Assembly to Consider Bills to Require Autism Insurance Coverage, Combat Medical Errors, Restrict School Chief Pay
Will Also Mull Lt. Gov. Campaign Disclosure and Finance Rules
(TRENTON) – The Assembly will meet Thursday to vote on measures to require insurance coverage for autism treatments, combat hospital medical errors, restrict excessive school chief pay and impose campaign rules on lieutenant governor candidates.
Legislation Assemblyman Speaker Joseph J. Roberts Jr. (D-Camden), Vincent Prieto (D-Hudson) and Assemblywoman Joan Voss (D-Bergen) sponsored would require insurers to provide coverage for autism treatments.
The measure (A-2238) stems from the enactment in 2007 of seven laws that made New Jersey a national leader in providing support to families affected by autism. New Jersey has the nation’s highest autism rates.
“Autistic adults who have not received the proper treatment will leave our families, communities and state with new and more expensive challenges,” Roberts said. “Not only are we making people’s lives better, we’re doing it in a very cost-effective way.”
Legislation (A-1264/3371/3633) Assemblymen Paul Moriarty, Linda Greenstein (D-Middlesex/Mercer), Lou Greenwald and Nilsa Cruz Perez (both D-Camden) sponsored would prohibit hospitals from holding patients and their insurance companies liable for medical bills related to errors and require public hospital-specific reporting.
“Patients rightly expect that their safety and wellbeing will be protected when they visit a hospital,” said Moriarty (D-Gloucester).
Legislative Office Will Operate With Limited Staff Resources
(VOORHEES)—Assemblyman Louis Greenwald and Assemblywoman Pamela Lampitt (both D-Camden) announced today that their legislative office staff will be furloughed one day each in May and June. The furloughs, which are mandatory for many state departments, are voluntary for state legislative offices.
“These tough economic times require tough choices from state government,” said Greenwald. “As part of the effort to save $35 million in state employee costs, Assemblywoman Lampitt, our legislative staff, and I will take pay cuts by participating in furloughs.”
In an effort to continue service, Greenwald and Lampitt’s legislative office will implement furloughs on a staggered basis on the following dates: May 27-28 and June 9-10, 2009. Constituents seeking assistance should be aware that though the legislative office will make every attempt to avoid a disruption in service, the office will have very limited staff resources on these dates.
“As with any other day, our staff will make their best effort to help any constituent who contacts our office,” said Lampitt. “Because our office will operate with limited personnel on these furlough days, residents should be aware that it may take our office longer than usual to assist them.”
Greenwald and Lampitt’s legislative office is located at 1103 Laurel Oak Road, Suite 142, in Voorhees, and can be contacted via phone at 856-435-1247.
Legislation Would Create Pilot Program To Educate High Schoolers
(TRENTON) – Legislation Assembly members Gary S. Schaer, Pamela R. Lampitt, and Albert Coutinho sponsored to initiate a pilot program to educate high school students on personal finance management so they can avoid irresponsible spending habits that lead to excessive personal debt and bankruptcy was released Thursday by a Senate committee.
“Too many young people have taken an ‘out of sight, out of mind’ attitude to their personal finances, setting themselves up for financial hardship before they even get their college degree,” said Schaer (D-Passaic/Bergen/Essex), a professional financial advisor. “We must do a better job of preparing students to be financially responsible adults.”
A 2005 analysis of credit card debt by student-loan provider Nellie Mae found the average college freshman carried a credit card balance of $1,585. That debt load ballooned to an average of $2,864 for college seniors.
A 2007 follow-up survey of graduate students reported an average outstanding credit card debt of $8,612. Only 20 percent said they pay-off their balance each month. Two-thirds of respondents said they received their first credit card as an undergraduate student, with 93 percent saying would have liked additional financial management information before starting school.
Regional Business Organization Praises Lampitt’s Leadership, Commitment to Innovation
(VOORHEES)—The Chamber of Commerce Southern New Jersey last night presented Assemblywoman Pamela Lampitt (D-Camden) with its “Public Service Award” at its 2009 Pinnacle Awards Dinner, held at the Crowne Plaza in Cherry Hill. Each year, the Chamber presents this award to a public servant who has demonstrated outstanding commitment to the regional business community.
“Upon her election, Assemblywoman Lampitt immediately championed the mission and activities of the Chamber, and works with us on our public policy agenda in support of our members and the regional business community. Pam has provided an open door to the Chamber and our membership, seeking our input on a variety of issues and listening to our concerns including those relating to the State budget and state spending,” said Debra DiLorenzo, President & CEO of the Chamber. “In particular, she has been a champion for small businesses and for innovative legislation to help grow New Jersey’s budding ‘green’ jobs sector. In these economic times, we need more hardworking legislators like Assemblywoman Lampitt, and we’re proud to honor her.”
“I’m deeply honored to receive this award,” said Lampitt “As a former councilwoman in Cherry Hill, I led the push for economic development and a more business-friendly climate. I’m proud to have continued that work in the Assembly.”
(TRENTON) – Legislation Assembly members Fred Scalera and Pamela Lampitt sponsored to require school security drills to improve emergency preparedness was released today by a Senate committee.
State law requires most public schools to conduct two fire drills per month, but their bill (A-3002) aims to improve readiness at public and private schools by requiring one monthly fire drill and one monthly security drill.
The measure recently passed the Assembly 78-0 last year and was released today by the Senate Education Committee.
A security drill would practice procedures that respond to emergencies such as a lockdown or an active shooter.
“Many schools haven’t practiced their security plans because there’s no law to require them to do so,” said Scalera, (D-Bergen, Essex, Passaic) chairman of the Assembly Homeland Security and State Preparedness Committee. “That’s a problem. History has taught us that school security drills can be vitally important and lifesaving.”
The bill would direct the Director of the Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness, in consultation with state education, fire safety, emergency management, state police and attorney general’s office officials to develop and disseminate curriculum to each school district and nonpublic school to help them prepare and conduct school security drills.