S-10 (Sweeney, Ruiz) / A-10 (Oliver, Cryan). The bill passed the Assembly 46-32-0 and the Senate 23-17-0 only to be vetoed by Governor Christie. The bill will not become law unless the Legislature is able to override the governor’s veto. The bill, which NJEA supported, would have increased the gross income tax rate on income exceeding $1,000,000 for taxable year 2010. The additional revenue could be used to restore some of the cuts in the governor’s proposed budget. New Jersey’s Constitution requires 100% of the revenue collected from the state’s income tax be used for property tax relief. Contrary to popular belief, New Jersey’s income tax revenue cannot be used to reduce state debt, to make contributions to state worker pension funds, to build state roads, to pay for Charity Care, to provide state security or for any other state expense. It can only be used for property tax relief.
ACR-127 (Diegnan, Moriarty, Malone, Caputo, Jasey)/SCR-102 (Ruiz).This resolutionexpresses support for the submission of an application for a federal Race to the Top grant. Race to the Top (RTTT) is a competitive federal grant program for education. If New Jersey’s application is successful, the federal government could award up to $400 million to New Jersey over the course of four years. This resolution was passed by the Senate 39-0 and the Assembly 78-0 before being filed with the Secretary of State. NJEA supported the resolution.
S-375(Weinberg, Gordon), supported by NJEA, passed in the Senate 38-2. This bill would add transparency to the conversion process of a health insurance corporation to a for-profit insurer. It would add extra hearings and require a health impact study, as well as requiring that any proceeds from the conversion be used to promote improvements in health care. The bill now awaits action in the Assembly.
A-2200 (Johnson/Conners): This legislation, which permits a child whose parent or guardian is ordered into active military service to remain enrolled in the school district where the child’s parent or guardian resided prior to active military service, unanimously passed the Assembly. The bill was referred to the Senate Education Committee. NJEA supports this legislation.
S-1730 (Norcross, O’Toole, Sacco) Legislation which requires all public employees to reside in New Jersey passed the full Senate (25-10) and is ready for Assembly Committee consideration. NJEA was successful in amending the legislation to grandfather all current employees, but still opposed the bill and continues to seek amendments to further protect school employees.
ACR-94 (Conners, Conaway, Quijano)/SCR-40 (Beach, Girgenti) passed the Assembly 78-0-0 and has already passed the Senate. This resolution requests and encourages each institution of higher education in the State to seek membership in the Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges (SOC) Consortium. The SOC provides educational opportunities to servicemembers who had trouble completing college degrees because of their frequent relocations. NJEA supported this resolution which has been filed with the Secretary of State.
A-2405 (Lampitt) was amended on the Assembly floor and is on second reading in the Assembly. This legislation directs the governing board of each institution of higher education to develop and coordinate a comprehensive disaster preparedness plan. This plan will be developed with the involvement of faculty staff and various government agencies. NJEA supported this bill.