Tag: Wolfe

Assembly Approves Wolfe’s Bill to Amend NJ Stars Program

Press Release – The General Assembly today approved legislation sponsored by Assemblyman Dave Wolfe that amends the eligibility requirement for the NJ STARS (New Jersey Student Tuition Assistance Reward Scholarship) program.

Under current law, a student is eligible for the program if the student is, among other things, ranked within the top 15 percent of the graduating class at the time of high school graduation.

Dave Wolfe

Wolfe’s bill, A-2364, amends current law so that eligibility will be based on the top 15 percent of the class at the completion of the 11th grade rather than a student’s rank at the time of graduation.

“With cost of a college education so expensive today, students and their families need as much financial assistance information as possible when selecting a school,” said Wolfe, R-Ocean. “Allowing a student know if he or she will be receiving tuition assistance at the end of their junior year rather than at graduation will be extremely helpful when beginning the college choice process.

“The NJ STARS program has been an invaluable scholarship program for many students who otherwise wouldn’t be able to attend college,” he continued. “In many cases, because it has also been the deciding factor as to where a student attends college, it has helped us retain many of our state’s brightest students. This revision will help make a great program even better.”

Wolfe has been a long-term advocate of the NJ Stars program. In May 2012, Gov. Christie signed into law legislation sponsored by the 10th legislative district lawmaker that revised the NJ STARS and NJ STARS II program. The revision resulted in savings to both the state and New Jersey colleges while preserving the program for eligible students.

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Wolfe’s Bill to Amend NJ Stars Program Advances

Source: Press Release – Legislation sponsored by Assemblyman Dave Wolfe that amends the eligibility requirement for the NJ STARS (New Jersey Student Tuition Assistance Reward Scholarship) program today cleared the Assembly Higher Education Committee.

Under current law, a student is eligible for the program if the student is, among other things, ranked within the top 15 percent of the graduating class at the time of high school graduation.

Dave Wolfe

Wolfe’s bill, A-2364, would amend current law so that eligibility will be based on the top 15 percent of the class at the completion of the 11th grade rather than a student’s rank at the time of graduation.

“Often, when trying to decide which college to attend, cost is the determining factor for students and their families,” said Wolfe, R-Ocean. “Letting a student know if he or she will be receiving tuition assistance at the end of their junior year will be extremely helpful to them and their families as they begin the college choice process.

“The NJ STARS program has been an invaluable scholarship program that not only has served as a life line to many students who otherwise wouldn’t be able to attend college, but it has helped us retain many of our state’s brightest students,” continued Wolfe. “This revision will further enhance the program.”

Wolfe has been a long-term advocate of the NJ Stars program. In May 2012, Gov. Christie signed into law legislation sponsored by the 10th legislative district lawmaker that revised the NJ STARS and NJ STARS II program. The revision resulted in savings to both the state and New Jersey colleges while preserving the program for eligible students.

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Ocean County Lawmakers Seek Tougher Penalties to Fight Heroin and Prescription Drug Trafficking

From: The Sandpaper.net - In response to ongoing prescription drug and heroin problems in Ocean County, legislators from the 9th and 10th districts are collaborating with the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office to strengthen state laws and help alleviate the problem.

Sen. Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove of the 9th District introduced legislation earlier this summer that would grade drug dealing offenses by “units,” rather than weight, of controlled dangerous substances, including heroin. In the 10th District, Sen. Jim Holzapfel, a former Ocean County prosecutor, and Assemblymen Dave Wolfe and Greg McGuckin endorsed this measure, which would allow a defendant to be charged with a higher offense than is currently permitted.

“This anti-drug legislation was drafted at the request of Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph D. Coronato as a means of more effectively combating the trafficking of heroin in New Jersey,” the 9th District legislators said in a joint statement. “Our delegation is committed to stemming the tide of drug trafficking and drug use that has pervaded our communities with deadly consequences…

The 10th District, meanwhile, has introduced a bill that seeks to increase participation in New Jersey’s electronic Prescription Monitoring Program, which collects data on prescriptions dispensed for all controlled and dangerous substances. The measure is intended to prevent the diversion, abuse and illegal sale of prescription drugs. In addition, the legislation encourages doctors to participate in the program and increase information sharing to ensure that prescriptions are also being monitored from state to state.

“We are working alongside the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office to reassess and enhance the current state law to allow for more severe penalties for the distribution of specific drugs and to combat the growing heroin epidemic our state currently faces,” stated Holzapfel, Wolfe and McGuckin. “While there is no quick fix for the growing number of overdoses and heroin-related deaths, we must target the distributors. Prescription pill abuse is the new gateway to heroin addiction.

“Our residents and children need to be educated about the deadly effects before this epidemic gets worse.”

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Wolfe McGuckin team with OC Prosecutor to help change drug laws

From: Press of Atlantic City - Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph Coronato and the 9th Legislative District legislators have found additional support for the fight against what officials are calling a heroin and prescription drug abuse epidemic in Ocean County.

State Sen. Jim Holzapfel and Assemblymen Dave Wolfe and Greg McGuckin of the 10th Legislative District recently met with Coronato to discuss needed changes.

Dave Wolfe

The legislators said they are working alongside the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office to reassess and enhance current state law to allow for more severe penalties for the distribution of specific drugs and to combat the growing heroin epidemic.

“While there is no quick fix for the growing number of overdoses and heroin-related deaths, we must target the distributors. Prescription pill abuse is the new gateway to heroin addiction,” the 10th District legislators stated. “Our residents and children need to be educated about the deadly effects before this epidemic gets worse.”

In May, 9th District legislators joined with Coronato when they unveiled legislation that would

Gregory McGuckin

strengthen state law by permitting drug dealing offenses to be graded by dosage units instead of the weight of controlled dangerous substances, including heroin.

The move came after nine people died of heroin doses over a span of eight days across Ocean County.

The 10th District legislators have moved to sponsor that legislation from the 9th District legislators.

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Angelini, Wolfe Introduce Bill in Response to Prescription Drug Abuse Report

From: PolitickerNJ - New Jersey lawmakers on both sides of the aisle reacted this week to a new report that ties prescription drug abuse to an increase in heroin use in the state.

A pair of Assembly Republicans introduced a bill Wednesday aiming to increase the state’s participation in a program that collects data on the distribution of prescription drugs. Similarly, the chairman of the Senate committee that oversees health issues indicated legislation in response to the report is forthcoming.

Assembly members Mary Pat Angelini, (R-11), and David Wolfe, (R-10), introduced a bill following the report’s release that seeks to curb such abuse by revising provisions of the Prescription Monitoring Program.

A4220 would increase participation in the program that collects data on prescription drug distribution.

SCI officials detailed in the report how prescription drugs intended for patients seeking pain relief are often funneled into criminal activity. The drug’s high street value encourages the diversion to illegal activity, they said.

Mary Pat Angelini

“The drug abuse that results from those illegally dispensing prescriptions for financial gain or for what they believe is harmless recreational use is a social issue that needs to be addressed by our state-of-the art technology along with the cooperation of those who oversee and supervise their distribution,” Angelini said.

The lawmakers’ proposal would permit doctors to designate an employee from their practice to access the database and report violations to the agency that oversees the program.

“Improved oversight of those who authorize and dispense narcotics will deter and bring to justice those who put the potential for financial gain of pain medication above a patient’s welfare,” said Wolfe.

“The incidents of the out-in-the-open sale and purchase of drugs described in the report indicates that pushers have no fear. Utilizing the monitoring and reporting requirements and capabilities of the PMP sends the message to these predators that they will be caught and punished.”

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McGuckin, Wolfe Address Oceanfront Easement Holdouts

From: Point Pleasant Patch - One of Brick Township’s 63 oceanfront homeowners who has failed to sign an easement that would allow a dune and beach replenishment project to go forward is a New Jersey state lawmaker.

Jack McKeon, a member of the state’s General Assembly from Essex County, has not signed the documentation that would allow a protective dune to be constructed in front of his oceanfront home on Sunset Lane in township’s South Mantoloking section…

Gregory McGuckin

McKeon’s fellow Assembly member Gregory P. McGuckin (R-Ocean), who represents Brick Township, did not address his colleague’s situation in a statement issued on dune replenishment projects Thursday, but urged the passage of a bill he is sponsoring that would make it less costly for municipalities to take the easements by eminent domain. The bill would require that the increased value of a home due to the dune protection is taken into consideration and weighed against any loss of view when calculating compensation.

“We understand that beachfront owners enjoy their view of the ocean, but this is a public safety issue,” said McGuckin. “Our measure will ensure that homeowners are fairly compensated for allowing the construction of dunes on their property which will benefit entire communities. As legislators it’s our responsibility to provide for the best interests of all residents, not just a few.”

At a meeting of the Save Barnegat Bay organization Thursday night, Assemblyman David Wolfe (R-Ocean),who also

Dave Wolfe

represents Brick Township, said he was “disappointed” to hear that his colleague’s easement had not been signed, and that he would talk to McKeon about the issue.

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Holzapfel-Wolfe-McGuckin Easement Bill Affords Protection to both Communities and Homeowners

Press Release – Following a recent state Supreme Court ruling which struck a blow to residents resisting state efforts to construct property protecting sand dunes along beachfront properties, Sen. Jim Holzapfel and Assemblymen Dave Wolfe and Greg McGuckin today reiterated their call for action on legislation they sponsor which they say strikes the right balance between vital beach replenishment projects and fair compensation for homeowners.

“If Sandy taught us anything it’s that sand dunes provide a successful line of defense against storms,” said Holzapfel, R-Ocean. “The entire town of Mantoloking was pretty much destroyed because they lacked dunes, however, Midway Beach in Seaside Park was left virtually untouched because it was protected by a strong dune system. Our only interest is in protecting our towns and its residents from potentially life-threatening and costly devastation going forward. We hope our colleagues in both Houses will take immediate action on this legislation.”

Noting a recent media report in which Brick Township officials have given 63 easement holdouts until August 1 to grant access to their property before they declare eminent domain, the 10th legislative district lawmakers said they understand the concerns of the holdouts, but noted that the dunes are necessary for the greater good.

“Safeguarding our communities and our natural resources is the responsibility of government and its citizens,” said Wolfe. “Many beachfront homeowners support the construction of dunes because they know they are necessary to protect their property. This bill provides an equitable balance between their rights and the need to keep all residents from harm.”

“We understand that beachfront owners enjoy their view of the ocean, but this is a public safety issue,” said McGuckin, R-Ocean.

Gregory McGuckin

“Our measure will ensure that homeowners are fairly compensated for allowing the construction of dunes on their property which will benefit entire communities. As legislators it’s our responsibility to provide for the best interests of all residents, not just a few.”

The bill, A-3896/S-2618, would supplement the state’s Eminent Domain Act to provide that just compensation for an easement over a portion of beachfront property condemned for the purpose of dune construction or beach replenishment must include consideration of the increase in value to the entire property due to the added safety and property protection provided by the dune or replenished beach. The bill would also provide that any additional rights of the public to access property held in the public trust arising as a result of the easement, or the dune construction or beach replenishment, would not be considered to cause a diminution in the value of the entire property.

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Committee Passes McGuckin-Wolfe School Bus Camera Bill

Source: School Transportation News - New school-bus safety legislation that aims to protect students during loading and unloading won approval from the Assembly Education Committee in New Jersey. Sponsored by Assemblymen Greg McGuckin and David W. Wolfe, A-2150 would permit municipalities and school districts to install video monitoring systems on school-bus stop arms in order to more easily identify and prosecute motorists who unlawfully pass buses that are stopped to pick up or discharge students.

Specifically, the measure would establish a five-year pilot program to allow municipalities and school districts to contract with private vendors to install, operate and maintain video cameras on their school buses to assist in enforcement of school bus stop laws. After cameras record alleged violations, footage would be forwarded to the city’s chief law enforcement officer, who would verify a violation has occurred and issue a summons to the motorist…

Gregory McGuckin

“Picking up and discharging passengers is the most dangerous time for school bus drivers and their students. Common sense dictates that when motorists see a stopped school bus with its lights flashing and its ‘stop’ sign out, they should stop and wait until the bus shuts off all its warning signals and begins to pull away before proceeding. Ignorance of the law is no excuse,” McGuckin said in a statement.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that 27 percent of school-age pedestrians fatally injured between 2000 and 2009 were struck by a non-bus vehicle. According to NHTSA’s latest report, twice as many children perish as pedestrians in school transportation-related traffic accidents each year, as compared to those who are passengers on student transportation vehicles — 10 versus five, on average.

“These are preventable deaths. It’s very difficult for school bus drivers to gather information on motorists who unlawfully pass

Dave Wolfe

their buses,” explained Wolfe. “They aren’t sitting there with a pad and pen in hand. They are focused on the students getting onand off the bus and the safety of all their passengers. Equipping buses with video systems will serve as an effective public safety tool.”

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McGuckin-Wolfe Bill Will Use Cameras to catch motorists who pass school buses

From: PhillyBurbs.com - The swinging red stop sign on school buses could wind up becoming more than just a warning.

Gregory McGuckin

Legislation moving through the New Jersey Legislature would authorize school districts to install cameras on their buses to catch motorists who illegally pass.

The bill authored by Assemblymen Greg McGuckin, R-10th of Toms River; David Wolfe, R-10th of Brick;and Troy Singleton, D-7th of Palmyra, would create a five-year pilot program allowing towns and school districts to contract with vendors to install, operate and maintain school bus monitoring systems on their vehicles to assist with the enforcement of the no-passing law.

Under the bill, video of suspected violations would be sent to the police department in the town where they occur for review. If the police concur, a traffic summons would be issued to the owner of the vehicle.

Dave Wolfe

The bill also would increase the fines for violations on the no-passing law to $300 and $500 for all offenses from the existing $100 for first-time offenders and $250 for subsequent offenses

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Wolfe Bill About School Bus Safety

Source: NJ 101.5 – When a school bus pulls off to the side of the road, flashes its lights and a stop sign pops out, most New Jersey drivers obey the law and come to a complete stop, but a small number of motorists ignore the warning, swerve around the bus and continue down the road.

One state lawmaker is pushing a plan to crack down on these individuals. Assemblyman Dave Wolfe is sponsoring a measure that would allow municipalities and school districts to equip school buses with video monitoring equipment.

“There will be cameras on the bus, and if somebody does not stop when the arm is extended or when the bus stops, they will be subject to a fine,” he says. “It’s a 5-year pilot program and it’s not a money maker, it’s really a safety maker. There have been a number of fatalities not only in the state, but nationally from people who don’t heed the stop sign with the blinking lights- something needs to be done to protect our kids.”

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