Vainieri Huttle on 'Leah's Law' and the Need to Ensure Child Protective Services Caseworker Safety (A-4638)”

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Assembly Democratic Lawmakers' Bill to Bring Gaming to North Jersey and Provide Significant Money for Programs & Property Tax Relief for Senior & Disabled Residents Advanced by Assembly Panel

Caputo, Prieto, Schaer, Vainieri Huttle, Mukherji, Lagana,Eustace, Caride, Jimenez & Johnson Bill Would Allow Two North Jersey Casinos, Provide Significant Funding for Programs & Property Tax Relief for Seniors and Disabled & Help Atlantic City and Horse Racing Industry

The Assembly Judiciary Committee on Thursday advanced legislation sponsored by Assembly Democratic lawmakers to ask voters to allow casino gaming in North Jersey and use money from that expansion to provide significant funding for programs and property tax relief for senior citizens and disabled residents, along with help for Atlantic City and the horse racing industry.

Under current law, casino gambling is permitted only in Atlantic City, but the constitutional amendment proposed by Assembly Democrats Ralph Caputo, Speaker Vincent Prieto, Gary Schaer, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Raj Mukherji, Joseph Lagana, Tim Eustace, Marlene Caride, Angelica Jimenez and Gordon Johnson would allow the Legislature to pass laws to permit casinos in two northern New Jersey counties.

Once established, for the first 15 years, 63 percent of the state revenues would be dedicated as follows: 48 percent for the same purposes as Atlantic City casino revenues - programs for seniors and disabled persons; and 52 percent for state aid to each county and municipality in the state for programs and property tax relief for senior citizens and disabled residents.

Meanwhile, 35 percent would be dedicated for the purposes of recovery, stabilization or improvement of Atlantic City. 

The rest would go toward the horse racing industry.

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Giblin, Diegnan, Jimenez, Caputo, Vainieri Huttle Bill to Ban "Megan's Law" Offenders from Real Estate Licenses Clears Assembly Committee

(TRENTON) - An Assembly panel released on Thursday legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Thomas Giblin, Patrick Diegnan, Angelica Jimenez, Ralph Caputo and Valerie Vainieri Huttle to revise real estate licensure law and prohibit Megan's Law offenders from obtaining a real estate license. 

"With this legislation, we protect New Jersey's families," said Giblin (D-Essex, Passaic). "By continuing to allow Megan's Law offenders to practice real estate, we unnecessarily expose families and children to felonious individuals. Prohibiting sex offenders from selling homes is the right thing to do." 

"This practice of permitting sex offenders to work with families and the possibility of exposure to children cannot go on," said Diegnan (D-Middlesex). "This legislation puts families first when dealing in real estate transactions handled by Megan's Law offenders."

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Vainieri Huttle & Jimenez Bill to Modify Law on Certain Heinous Crimes Against Minors Clears Panel

'Joan's Law' Honors Girl Scout Who Was Raped, Murdered by Neighbor

Legislation sponsored by Assemblywomen Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Angelica Jimenez to amend a state law outlining the penalty for murdering a minor while in the act of committing a sex crime against him or her was advanced by an Assembly panel on Monday. 

The bill (A-2592) would require life imprisonment without parole for persons convicted of the murder of a minor under the age of 18 during the commission of a sex crime. Current law requires such a penalty only when the victim is under age 14.

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Assembly Panel OK’s Jimenez, Lagana, Mukherji, Vainieri Huttle & Spencer Bill to Improve Oversight & Care in NJ Nursing Homes

An Assembly panel on Monday approved legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Angelica Jimenez, Joseph Lagana, Raj Mukherji, Valerie Vainieri Huttle and L. Grace Spencer to improve oversight and the quality of care for the elderly in New Jersey nursing homes.

The bill (A-4636) would establish minimum certified nursing assistant-to-resident ratios for nursing homes.

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Assembly Democratic Lawmakers Unveil Bill to Bring Gaming to North Jersey and Provide Significant Money for Programs & Property Tax Relief for Senior & Disabled Residents

Caputo, Prieto, Schaer, Vainieri Huttle, Mukherji, Lagana, Eustace, Caride, Jimenez & Johnson Introduce Bill to Allow Two North Jersey Casinos, Provide Significant Funding for Programs & Property Tax Relief for Seniors and Disabled & Help Atlantic City and Horse Racing Industry

(TRENTON) - Assembly Democratic lawmakers on Monday announced they've introduced legislation to ask voters to allow casino gaming in North Jersey and use money from that expansion to provide significant funding for programs and property tax relief for senior citizens and disabled residents, along with help for Atlantic City and the horse racing industry.

Under current law, casino gambling is permitted only in Atlantic City, but the constitutional amendment proposed by Assembly Democrats Ralph Caputo, Speaker Vincent Prieto, Gary Schaer, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Raj Mukherji, Joseph Lagana, Tim Eustace, Marlene Caride, Angelica Jimenez and Gordon Johnson would allow the Legislature to pass laws to permit casinos in two northern New Jersey counties.

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Assembly Panel Approves Mazzeo, Andrzejczak, Jimenez, Vainieri Huttle & Benson Bill Boosting Rental Assistance for Veterans

(TRENTON) - Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Vince Mazzeo, Sgt. Bob Andrzejczak, Angelica Jimenez, Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Daniel Benson to boost rental assistance to military veterans was approved by an Assembly panel on Monday.

"Our veterans were willing to endure untold sacrifices for their country. Now we need to step up to the plate and do all we can to help care for them," said Mazzeo (D-Atlantic). This financial assistance is meant to give a hands-up while they find the road back to self-sufficiency."

"For veterans returning to a post-combat life, especially our 'wounded warriors,' housing assistance can be critical," said Andrzejczak (D-Cape May/Atlantic/Cumberland). "Boosting this program will go a long way towards helping many rebuild their lives without having to rely entirely on family."

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Lampitt, Mosquera & Vainieri Huttle Bill Creating New Jersey Caregiver Task Force Gains Assembly Panel Approval

(TRENTON) - Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Pamela Lampitt, Gabriela Mosquera and Valerie Vainieri Huttle to help gain an accurate picture of the challenges facing caregivers in New Jersey and ways in which the state can improve support was advanced by an Assembly panel on Thursday.

Specifically, the bill (A-4026) would establish the "New Jersey Caregiver Task Force" to evaluate caregiver support services in the state, and provide recommendations for the improvement and expansion of such services.

"If you haven't been in a position to serve as a caregiver to anyone, you can't even imagine the types of challenges they face today," said Lampitt (D-Camden/Burlington). "The physical, emotional and financial requirements can be overwhelming. Our goal is to accurately gauge their needs so we can determine where and how the state can step up to offer support."

"Caregiver support services" is defined under the bill as any type of support or assistance available to caregivers in the state, including, but not limited to, financial support or assistance from any source, and any other types of support or assistance provided by public or private employers, hospitals, health care providers or organizations, or government agencies.

"Most people who are providing caregiving services are doing so selflessly and with the weight of many responsibilities on their shoulders," said Mosquera (D-Camden/Gloucester). "Often times the financial strain combined with the physical requirements can be extremely stressful. As a state, we should be doing all we can to help ease these demands."

"The needs of caregivers may vary greatly depending on whether they are caring for someone who has physical or mental disabilities," said Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen). "This task force would be comprised of a diverse group of individuals who have the expertise and insight to help us formulate a plan to improve the compassionate delivery of caregiving services."

The task force would consist of nine members, including the Commissioner of Human Services, the President of the New Jersey chapter of the American Association of Retired Persons, the Executive Director of Caregivers of New Jersey, the Executive Director of the Arc of New Jersey, the Executive Director of the National Alliance on Mental Illness New Jersey, and the President of the Alzheimer's Association Greater New Jersey Chapter, or their designees; and three public members appointed by the Governor.

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Vainieri Huttle, Lampitt & Diegnan Bill to Raise Tobacco & E-Cig Purchasing Age from 19 to 21 Clears Assembly Panel

(TRENTON) - An Assembly panel on Thursday approved legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Pamela Lampitt and Patrick J. Diegnan to raise the legal age to purchase tobacco and electronic cigarette devices from 19 to 21 in New Jersey.

Vainieri Huttle said she sponsored the bill in hopes that when signed into law more youth will cease or delay smoking habits. 

"Many people start smoking in their teens because of peer pressure or the desire to fit in," Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen). "Most teens feel invincible at that age and can't fully comprehend the potential for addiction as well as the devastating long-term effects smoking can have on their health. Raising the purchasing age would give them the chance to mature more before making this potentially life-altering decision."

Specifically, the bill (A-3254) raises the minimum age for purchasing tobacco and electronic smoking devices from 19 to 21, and raises the minimum age from 19 to 21 years of a person to whom a vendor may sell, offer for sale, distribute, give or furnish such products in New Jersey.

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Vainieri Huttle, Eustace, Diegnan & Giblin Bill to Study Transition of Former State Developmental Center Residents Heads to Gov’s Desk

Legislation Assembly Democrats Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Tim Eustace, Patrick Diegnan Jr. and Thomas Giblin sponsored to study the transition of former residents of two recently- closed state developmental centers gained final legislative approval on Monday in the Senate.

The bill (A-1098) would require the Department of Human Services to conduct follow-up studies to assess the well-being of former residents of North Jersey Developmental Center and Woodbridge Developmental Center. The studies would evaluate all individuals who made a transition from the centers into the community after August 1, 2012.

"North Jersey and Woodbridge Developmental Centers provided access to the special resources their residents needed while also giving their families the ability to visit and provide all-important emotional support," said Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen). "Ideally - for the benefit of the residents and their loved ones - we would have kept these facilities open. However, given the administration's decision to close them, it is now our duty to make sure that their former residents have the care and opportunities they need and deserve, which is why this bill is so important."

Following the recommendation of the Task Force on the Closure of State Developmental Centers in an August 2012 report, North Jersey Developmental Center and Woodbridge Developmental Center closed in July 2014 and January 2015, respectively.

"It is our duty to ensure that every New Jersey resident with a developmental disability receives the care and support he or she needs to thrive physically, mentally and emotionally," said Eustace (D-Bergen/Passaic). "This legislation is about our commitment to stand up for the rights of some of New Jersey's most vulnerable men and women."

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