Press Releases

Democratic Legislation to Promote Donations to ALS Association Clears Assembly


Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Troy Singleton, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Daniel R. Benson, Herb Conaway Jr., Carmelo Garcia, Celeste Riley, Gabriela Mosquera and Ralph Caputo to make it easier for taxpayers to donate to the ALS Association passed 77-0 on Thursday in the Assembly.

Assembly Approves DeAngelo, Quijano & Benson Bill to Protect Consumers by Improving NJ’s Public Utility Infrastructure

The Assembly on Thursday approved legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Wayne DeAngelo, Annette Quijano and Daniel Benson to begin minimizing the impact of severe weather on consumers after the vast power outages that affected millions of homes and businesses in New Jersey during Superstorm Sandy.

Eustace, Benson, Vainieri Huttle, Lagana & Caride Legislation to Encourage Safe Disposal of Prescription Drugs Approved by Assembly

 Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Timothy Eustace, Daniel Benson, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Joseph Lagana and Marlene Caride to provide a safe way for New Jersey residents to dispose of prescription drugs was approved 68-4-5 Thursday by the Assembly.

Drug Abuse Prevention Advocate Honors Assemblyman Benson Recognizes Efforts on Good Samaritan, Overdose Prevention Law

(Hamilton) – Paul Ressler, member of the Governor’s Council on Alcohol and Drug

Abuse and the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, recently presented

Assemblyman Dan Benson with an honorary plaque for his work on a key drug overdose

prevention law, the Overdose Prevention Act, which included provisions known as the “Good

Samaritan Law” (see attached photo). Both were signed into law last year, with Assemblyman

Benson as prime sponsor of the Assembly Bill.

“I am so proud to accept this great honor and will continue to work in the Assembly to

help those dealing with addiction,” said Assemblyman Benson. He cited the law’s success in

helping save over 100 lives since it was enacted May 2013.

Benson Bill to Help Cover Cost of Environmental Infrastructure Projects in Mercer & Middlesex Counties Now Law

(TRENTON) – Legislation sponsored by Assemblyman Daniel Benson (D-Mercer/Middlesex) to provide loans to help offset the expense of hundreds of environmental infrastructure projects throughout the state, including several in Mercer and Middlesex counties, has been signed into law.

The law (A-3265) authorizes the New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Trust to expend up to $1.28 billion and any unexpended balances from previous authorizations to provide loans with an interest rate at or below the prevailing market rate for more than 200 eligible environmental infrastructure projects.

Benson Takes Local Students on State House Tour

Assemblyman Dan Benson recently took Steinert High School Government and Law-Related Experiences (GALRE) students on a tour of the New Jersey State House  Benson has made hosting the tour an annual event for local students interested in New Jersey Government and politics

 

Benson answered questions and gave students from Mrs. Quinn’s GALRE class a behind the scenes tour of the State House that included a trip to the Assembly Voting Chambers, which will coincide with senior year GALRE elective.

Wisniewski, Singleton, Benson & Lagana Bill Creating Transportation Infrastructure & Energy Banks Passes Senate

Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats John Wisniewski, Troy Singleton, Daniel R. Benson and Joseph Lagana that would establish a State Transportation Infrastructure Bank to leverage public and private investments for the long-term overhaul of New Jersey's transportation network received final legislative approval in the Senate on Monday, 35-1. 

"We can't ignore the underlying value that our infrastructure system holds for our economy," said Wisniewski (D-Middlesex), who chairs the committee. "For too long, we have neglected this foundation of our economy while our competitors in the global marketplace have invested in state-of-the-art water, energy and transportation systems. New Jersey's economic recovery will be inherently linked to whether or not we create a more reliable and sustainable infrastructure system with better roads, bridges, tunnels and rail systems."

Assembly Advances Wisniewski, Singleton, Benson & Lagana Bill Creating Transportation Infrastructure & Energy Banks

 Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats John Wisniewski, Troy Singleton, Daniel R. Benson and Joseph Lagana that would establish a State Transportation Infrastructure Bank to leverage public and private investments for the long-term overhaul of New Jersey's transportation network was approved 62-14 Thursday by the Assembly..


"We can't ignore the underlying value that our infrastructure system holds for our economy," said Wisniewski (D-Middlesex), who chairs the committee. "For too long, we have neglected this foundation of our economy while our competitors in the global marketplace have invested in state-of-the-art water, energy and transportation systems. New Jersey's economic recovery will be inherently linked to whether or not we create a more reliable and sustainable infrastructure system with better roads, bridges, tunnels and rail systems."

Moriarty, Benson & Wimberly Bill Outlawing Unsolicited Text Message Ads Approved by Assembly

 Legislation Assembly Democrats Paul Moriarty, Daniel R. Benson and Benjie Wimberly sponsored to prohibit advertisers from sending unwelcome and unsolicited advertisements to consumers via text messaging was approved 77-0 Thursday by the Assembly.

"Unwanted text messages not only tax consumers' patience, but they are a drain on cell minutes and bank accounts," said Moriarty (D-Gloucester/Camden). "Just as telephone customers have been able to close their homes to unwanted telemarketing calls, cell customers should be able to be free of unwanted text ads. What we're trying to do here is assist consumers in avoiding unnecessary charges as a result of receiving messages that are unsolicited and over which the user has no control."

Prieto-led Vocational Education Improvement Bill Package Approved by Assembly

A sweeping vocational education improvement package sponsored by Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto to enhance and expand vocational programs throughout New Jersey was approved Thursday by the Assembly.
The measures are also sponsored by Assembly Democrats Patrick J. Diegnan Jr., Joseph Lagana, Speaker Emeritus Sheila Oliver, Mila Jasey, Angelica Jimenez, Eliana Pintor Marin, Pamela Lampitt, Carmelo Garcia, Daniel R. Benson, Ralph Caputo, Celeste Riley, Timothy Eustace, Charles Mainor, Gordon Johnson, Marlene Caride, Gabriela Mosquera, Bonnie Watson Coleman and Angel Fuentes.


Prieto had said when he became Assembly Speaker in January that improving vocational education would be one of his top priorities, citing it as key to making sure all New Jersey students are ready for work in today's ever-changing economy.
"While many focus on college without thinking about a technical career, we have to make it clear that there are also many well-paying careers that can be launched with an industry credential or an associate's degree," said Prieto (D-Hudson/Bergen). "As we work to make sure our economy begins to grow again, employers will look to our county vocational-technical schools to meet this need. We need to make sure our students are ready to go."

Stender, Caputo, Lagana & Benson Bill to Toughen Drunken Driving Penalties Advanced by Assembly

Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Linda Stender, Ralph Caputo, Joseph Lagana and Daniel R. Benson to toughen penalties for driving while under the influence of alcohol in New Jersey - including allowing ignition interlock devices - was approved XX-XX Thursday by the Assembly.


"Every day, almost 30 people in the United States die in motor vehicle crashes that involve an alcohol-impaired driver. Innocent people are dying because of the irresponsible choices of others," said Stender (D-Union/Middlesex/Somerset). "Under this bill, if you get caught drinking and driving, you face having to install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle, having your driving privileges restricted or losing them all together."

Assembly OKs Prieto, Benson, Wimberly, Moriarty & Garcia Bill Targeting Creditors Who Fail to Keep Up Vacant Homes

Legislation sponsored by Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto and Assemblymen Daniel R. Benson, Benjie E. Wimberly, Paul D. Moriarty and Carmelo G. Garcia that would empower municipalities to take action against creditors who fail to maintain vacant properties that are slated for foreclosure on Monday passed in the General Assembly. 

The bill (A-1257) would give municipal officials the authority to issue citations and impose fines to ensure that creditors fulfill their responsibility to maintain unoccupied residential properties on which a summons and complaint in an action to foreclose has been filed.

Quijano, Vainieri Huttle, Jasey, Benson, Singleton, Wilson, Lampitt Bill to Facilitate Financial Support to Local Libraries Receives Final Legislative Approval by Assembly

The full Assembly gave the final approval on Monday to legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Annette Quijano, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Mila Jasey, Daniel Benson, Troy Singleton, Whip Wilson and Pamela Lampitt to allow taxpayers to make a voluntary contribution in support of local libraries on their gross income tax returns with a vote of 77-0. 

"Budgetary constraints at the local and state level have made it difficult for many of our public libraries to operate effectively," said Quijano (D-Union). "This bill would help to bridge the gap in funding by allowing residents to make direct, monetary contributions come tax season."

Assembly Advances Benson, Riley, Wimberly & Garcia Bill to Establish Mold Exposure Limits in Residential Buildings

Legislation by Assembly Democrats Daniel Benson, Celeste Riley, Benjie Wimberly and Carmelo Garcia requiring the state to establish standards for exposure limits to mold in residential buildings and certification of mold inspectors and abatement workers was approved on Monday by the full Assembly.

The bill (A-1007) would require the state Department of Community Affairs (DCA) in consultation with the state Department of Health and Senior Services to establish standards for exposure limits to mold in residential buildings, and procedures for the inspection, identification and evaluation of the interior of residential buildings for mold.

Prieto, Lampitt, Vainieri Huttle & Benson Bill Barring Discrimination in School Sports & Phys Ed Signed Into Law

Legislation sponsored by Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto, Assemblywomen Pamela Lampitt and Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Assemblyman Daniel Benson to ensure that students with disabilities in New Jersey have an equal opportunity to participate in physical education programs received was signed into law on Thursday

"Every student deserves the chance to compete at the most competitive level possible," said Prieto (D-Bergen/Hudson). "With the Special Olympics taking place in Mercer County this week we're reminded that the only limitations we face are the ones we impose on ourselves."

Vainieri Huttle, Moriarty, Mosquera & Benson Bill Requiring Private Contracts to Save Money Gains Assembly Approval

Legislation Assembly Democrats Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Paul D. Moriarty, Gabriela Mosquera and Daniel R. Benson sponsored to make cost savings a prerequisite for the privatization of public services received approval on Monday from the General Assembly.

The bill (A-2873) requires a bidding process and subsequent cost analysis proving definitively that privatization would be less expensive, allow for the same or better quantity and quality of services and cause no increased burden on taxpayers. 

Stender, Benson, Johnson, DeAngelo & Gusciora Measure to Prevent Christie Admin from Doing Away with Civil Service System Gains Final Legislative Approval

Measure Seeks to Prevent Nepotism & Cronyism by Keeping Time-Honored, Competitive Job Protection Practices in Place

Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Linda Stender, Daniel Benson, Gordon Johnson, Wayne DeAngelo and Reed Gusciora to prevent the Christie administration from doing away with time-honored, competitive civil service job protections received final legislative approval 46-30-1 by the full Assembly panel on Monday. 

The measure (SCR-116/ACR-155) seeks to halt the administration's efforts to replace the state's civil service promotional examinations with a "job banding program" by declaring the move unconstitutional. With both houses now approving the resolution, it will be sent to the administration, which will have 30 days to amend or withdraw the new rule or the legislature may, by passage of another concurrent resolution, exercise its authority under the constitution to invalidate the regulations in whole or in part.

Prieto, Lampitt, Vainieri Huttle & Benson Bill Barring Discrimination in School Sports & Phys Ed Advanced Heads to Governor’s Desk

Legislation sponsored by Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto, Assemblywomen Pamela Lampitt and Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Assemblyman Daniel Benson to ensure that students with disabilities in New Jersey have an equal opportunity to participate in physical education programs received final legislative approval 76-0-2 by the full Assembly on Monday.

"Every student deserves the chance to compete at the most competitive level possible," said Prieto (D-Bergen/Hudson). "With the Special Olympics set to kick-off in Mercer County this week we're reminded that the only limitations we face are the ones we impose on ourselves."

Mainor, Benson & DeAngelo Bill to Clarify Amber Alert Use in Cases of Children Abducted by Family Members Approved by Assembly

Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Charles Mainor, Daniel R. Benson and Wayne DeAngelo that would incorporate recommendations by the Attorney General on the proper use of an Amber Alert in cases involving child abductions by family members was approved Monday by the Assembly.


The bill is in response to the tragic case of Zara Malani-Lin Abdur-Raheem, a three-month old infant whose father abducted her from her grandmother and is accused of throwing her off the Driscoll Bridge. Under the Attorney General guidelines in effect at the time of Zara's abduction, it was not clear what criteria should be followed in cases of abduction by family members. This bill codifies changes to these guidelines recommended by the Attorney General in response to this case.

 

Benson Bill Permitting In-State Tuition Rates for Vets at State Colleges Clears Assembly Panel

Bipartisan legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Sgt. Robert Andrzejczak, Celeste Riley, Vincent Mazzeo, Troy Singleton, Wayne P. DeAngelo and Daniel R. Benson that would allow veterans attending a public college or university in New Jersey to pay in-state tuition rates received approval from an Assembly panel on Thursday.

The bill (A-2622) provides that a veteran attending a public institution of higher education living in New Jersey or who seeks and obtains residency status by the third year of education at an institution of higher education, thereby enabling him or her to pay an in-state tuition rate. The legislation is referred to as the New Jersey Tuition Equality for America's Military (NJTEAM) Act. 

Cryan, Benson, Singleton, Lampitt, Riley & Pinkin Bill to Boost Participation in School Breakfast, Creates "Breakfast after the Bell" Program

Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Joseph Cryan, Daniel Benson, Troy Singleton, Pamela Lampitt, Celeste Riley, Nancy Pinkin to boost breakfast programs in schools, particularly for underprivileged children, in order to help give them a leg up on academics advanced in the Senate on Monday.

The bill (A-679) would require the state to make every effort to assist school districts and nonpublic schools in increasing the participation rate of students, particularly low-income students, in the federal School Breakfast Program by establishing a "breakfast after the bell" program in the first-period classroom or during the first few minutes of the day. 

Prieto, Benson, Wimberly & Moriarty Bill Targeting Creditors Who Fail to Keep Up Vacant Homes Advances in Assembly

Legislation sponsored by Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto, Assemblyman Daniel R. Benson, Assemblyman Benjie E. Wimberly and Assemblyman Paul D. Moriarty that would empower municipalities to take action against creditors who fail to maintain vacant properties that are slated for foreclosure was released by an Assembly panel on Thursday. 

The bill (A-1257) gives municipal officials the authority to issue citations and impose fines to ensure that creditors fulfill their responsibility to maintain unoccupied residential properties on which a summons and complaint in an action to foreclose has been filed.

Johnson, Coughlin, Wimberly & Benson Bill to Create a Dedicated Bureau of Probation & Strengthen Services Advances in the Assembly

An Assembly panel recently advanced legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Gordon M. Johnson, Craig J. Coughlin, Benjie E. Wimberly and Daniel R. Benson proposing a constitutional amendment would allow the creation of a Bureau of Probation within the State Parole Board and transfer all probation duties from Judiciary to this new entity.

Assembly Panel OK's DeAngelo & Benson Bill to Toughen Penalties under Megan's Law & Bolster Law Enforcement Surveillance & Monitoring of Sex Offenders

Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Wayne DeAngelo and Daniel R. Benson (both D-Middlesex) to revise certain provisions of Megan's Law to toughen penalties for offenders and provide law enforcement who supervise these offenders with advanced technology and training to better protect potential victims was approved Monday by an Assembly committee.

Bill to Help Returning Veterans Find Work Becomes Law

Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Nelson Albano, Gabriela Mosquera, Timothy Eustace and Daniel R. Benson to help veterans find work was signed into law today.

The new law (A-2882) requires professional or occupational boards that issue professional or occupational licenses or certificates to give credit towards its requirements for licensure or certification for training, education and experience received while serving as a member of the Armed Forces that is substantially equivalent to the training, education, or experience required for licensure or certification.

Assembly Democrat-Sponsored Measure to Help Save Lives Signed Into Law

A compromise measure sponsored by Assembly Democrats Daniel Benson, Connie Wagner, Pamela Lampitt, Thomas Giblin, Upendra Chivukula, Angel Fuentes and Reed Gusciora to help save lives and prevent drug overdoses has officially been signed into law.

The compromise (S-2082) incorporates components of both the bill known as the "Opioid Antidote and Overdose Prevention Act" (A-3095), which was conditionally vetoed by Gov. Christie earlier this week and the "Good Samaritan Act" (A-578), which was conditionally vetoed by Christie last fall.

Assembly Approves Bill to Create Task Force to Make Safety Recommendations for NJ Halfway Houses

Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Nelson Albano, Joseph Cryan, Daniel Benson, Gilbert "Whip" Wilson, Charles Mainor, Bonnie Watson Coleman and Sean Connors to create a task force charged with reviewing the state's privately run halfway houses and making recommendations to enhance oversight and security was approved Monday by the General Assembly. 

Bill to Grant College Credit to Students Completing Jersey Boys and and Girls State Programs Clears

Bipartisan legislation sponsored by Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver, Republican Leader Jon M. Bramnick, Assemblyman Daniel Benson and Assemblyman Jerry Green to give students participating in the American Legion Jersey Boys State or the American Legion Auxiliary Jersey Girls State programs college credit for successfully completing the week-long course in government was approved 76-0 Monday by the General Assembly. 

DeAngelo & Benson Call on BPU to Reject JCP&L Rate Hike Request

As public hearings for the Jersey Central Power & Light (JCP&L) rate increase come to a close today, Assemblyman Wayne DeAngelo and Assemblyman Daniel Benson (both D-Hamilton) called on the Board of Public Utilities (BPU) to reject this proposed rate hike and instead work with JCP&L to increase their customer service to a standard worthy of those New Jersey residents. 

Benson Bill to Strengthen Megan’s Law, Better Protect Children from Sex Offenders Signed into Law

Legislation Assembly Democrat Daniel Benson (D-Mercer/Middlesex) sponsored to strengthen Megan's Law and better protect children from sex offenders has been signed into law.