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NJ Assembly to Reconvene In-person Voting Sessions, but Voters Still Have to Vote by Mail


the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Trenton NJ,  The NJ General Assembly will have a voting session on Monday, June 29, 2020. Caucus is scheduled for 9:00 AM via teleconference. The General Assembly voting session will begin at 1:00 PM.

Continue reading NJ Assembly to Reconvene In-person Voting Sessions, but Voters Still Have to Vote by Mail

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Governor Chris Christie Declares a State Of Emergency Maintaining Essential state government services During Shutdown

July 1 2017

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Trenton NJ,due to the state shut down  government services such as state parks and Motor Vehicle Commission offices will be closed.

Today, Governor Chris Christie signed the following Executive Order:

Executive Order 228 – Declaring a state of emergency and maintaining that essential state government services continue operating for the people of New Jersey, as the failure of the Legislature to act on a Fiscal Year 2018 State Budget by tonight’s constitutional deadline forces the closure of state government.

“This order is necessary to maintain the protection, safety and well-being of the people of New Jersey while I attempt to convince the Legislature to send me a fiscally responsible budget that I can sign and re-open New Jersey’s government, ” said Governor Christie. “This was completely avoidable. But Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto needlessly stalled the budget process, forcing the closure of New Jersey government and inconveniencing everyone living in and visiting our state.”

Included among the essential functions that will remain in operation: State Police, state correctional facilities, key child welfare services, state hospitals and treatment facilities, NJ TRANSIT, and operations linked to the health, safety, and welfare of the public, including certain environmental and health monitoring. The state closure also will NOT impact the State Lottery, casinos and racetracks. For details on non-essential services that will be closed as well as operations that will remain open, check the website of that department or agency.

Links to many major state agencies and a brief description of services impacted are provided below.

Department of Environmental Protection:All state parks, recreation areas, forests, and historic sites, including Island Beach State Park and Liberty State Park, will be closed; all public events within state parks and historic sites will be cancelled. The following will also be closed: permitting offices for Air, Historic Preservation, Land Use, Site Remediation, Solid Waste, and Water Supply; Green Acres and Blue Acres offices; Office of Dispute Resolution; Office of Permit Coordination; most of the Division of Fish & Wildlife (Wildlife Management Areas and on-line services will not be impacted); NJ Geologic Survey; and Rebuild by Design projects.

Department of Transportation: Construction will continue, as will emergency repairs and some roadside safety services. The rest areas on I-295 in Deepwater, Salem County and on I-80 in Knowlton, Warren County, will be closed.

New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission: All MVC agencies and inspection stations will be closed. Online services will still be available.

Department of Law & Public Safety:  Juvenile Justice Commission operations, State Medical Examiner Offices, and other public safety operations will continue, but some administrative offices will be closed.

Department of Health: The public will not be able to obtain copies of birth and marriage certificates, or copies of adoptees’ original birth certificates. No new certifications or renewals will be issued for EMTs, paramedics or Certified Nursing Assistants.

New Jersey Department of Labor:Unemployment Insurance and disability determination services will remain operational. Temporary Disability Insurance claims, Wage and Hour claims, and Family Leave Insurance claims may be filed, but they will not be processed. One Stop Career Centers (state not county services) will be closed; Workers Compensation Courts will be closed. Division of Vocational and Rehabilitation Services will be closed.

Department of Children and Families:Child abuse hotlines, protection services and response teams will continue to operate. Schools for children with special needs will remain open.

Department of Military and Veterans Affairs: Veteran’s Haven North and South will remain in operation and National Guard will remain on call.

Department of Banking and Insurance: All offices will be closed except the IURO (health insurance internal appeals program).

Department of Community Affairs:Inspections related to construction codes, fire safety, fairs and fireworks displays will continue, however some public services will not be available.

Department of Corrections: Prisons and halfway houses will remain operational, although some inmate services will be impacted.

Department of Education:Katzenbach School will remain open. Phone help desks, customer service, and all other related staff-based assistance functions will be unavailable and all core public functions will be closed.

Economic Development Authority:  EDA will not process any payments to businesses from any program (such as the Business Employment Incentive Program) which funding source needs to be authorized by the FY 2018 Appropriations Act.

Department of State: The travel and tourism welcome centers will be closed.

Department of the Treasury: July 1 pension checks have been processed and mailed. Taxation call centers and walk-in facilities will be closed. The Division of Risk Management will be closed, however the scheduling of medical appointments, treatments and services for injured workers will remain ongoing.  The Division of Pensions and Benefits will be closed, although it will continue payment of health provider claims and life claims, and continue to process changes to family status for health benefits.

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NJ Assembly votes to make it easier for towns to raise property taxes


By Michael Symons March 16, 2017 8:12 PM

TRENTON — Towns and counties would gain another exemption to the spending limits of the cap on property tax increases if a bill passed Thursday by the Assembly makes it into law.

Assemblyman Gary Schaer, D-Passaic, said he has heard from municipalities about having to pass on opportunities to use federal or private grants to hire police or buy fire trucks because of concerns over fitting the required local matching funds under the 2 percent cap.

The Assembly voted 48-26 to exempt matching-funds spending from the cap.

“We cannot hamstring local government from doing necessary things that members of one municipality or another would otherwise want to do but they have their hands tied and vital, vital considerations like police, like fire, like EMS, etc., are being jeopardized right now,” Schaer said.

Republicans opposed the bill.

“Any time we begin to erode away that 2 percent property tax cap level, that’s a problem for taxpayers. There’s no question about it,” said Assemblyman Anthony Bucco, R-Morris.

“We had a property tax cap years ago, but it had a million exemptions,” Bucco said. “We were able to negotiate a new property tax cap and limit the number of exceptions to very few, and I think you have to take very seriously any bill that begins to put exceptions back in.”

Read More: NJ Assembly votes to make it easier for towns to raise property taxes |

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Assembly Considers Making financial literacy a required subject in New Jersey Schools


FPANJ Applauds A-3396: Creating a Requirement for Financial Literacy Education

Financial Literacy Education has always been part of the pillars in the FPANJ mission; important legislation could help make it a reality in all New Jersey schools

December 7,2016

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ,  The Financial Planning Association of New Jersey (FPANJ) is eagerly watching the New Jersey State Legislature as it considers a bill that would make financial literacy a required subject in coursework taught to all children in grades K-8.
Assembly bill 3396 was first introduced in March, and amended in October. Among its provisions:

Basic financial literacy would be taught in elementary schools to teach students “sound financial decision-making”
Courses would be age appropriate
Course would cover budgeting, savings, credit, debt, insurance and investment, among other areas

John Crosby, CFP® and FPANJ Advocacy Director, said, “To say I’m excited about this is an understatement. This bill represents a clear commitment to our children by providing them with a foundation for success in life. Everything we do is impacted by sound decision-making with our finances, and this bill can help our students gain the tools necessary to understand how these decisions impact their lives.”

FPANJ has been a part of many community efforts to educate children on how money works and impacts their lives. Members volunteer their time with Junior Achievement of New Jersey to mentor students at their “Finance Park,” which served more than 11,000 students throughout the regions. They also participate in “Financial Planning Days,” offering information on various financial topics to consumers, including one-on-one sessions to address individual concerns.

“We know there are limited hours in the day for school children, and there is likely to be some debate on how we can add this curriculum, but we are convinced that financial literacy has far-reaching impact on students beyond money,” Crosby added. “We are committed to staying involved in this discussion as it moves through the statehouse.”

ABOUT FPA of New Jersey and FPA:

Financial Planning Association of New Jersey is part of The Financial Planning Association® (FPA®). FPA connects those who need, support and deliver professional financial planning. FPA believes that everyone is entitled to objective advice from a competent, ethical financial planner to make smart financial decisions. FPA members demonstrate and support a professional commitment to education and a client-centered financial planning process. Working in alliance with academic leaders, legislative and regulatory bodies, financial services firms and consumer interest organizations, FPA is the community that fosters the value of financial planning, and advances the practice and profession of financial planning.

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Governor Tells Prieto and the Assembly to Craft a TTF Bill Instead of Grousing



As Democrats – many of them in South Jersey pivoting hard from their agreement with Governor Chris Christie on Atlantic City in order to emphasize distance and convenient opposition – slam the governor on an insolvent state Transportation Trust Fund, Christie barked back at his would-be tormentors. Max Pizarro, PolitickerNJRead more

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Russo and Rumana Buck Trend Take 40th District Assembly

big fundraiser/rally for Vagianos tonight at Fish

fundraiser/rally for Vagianos at Fish

Russo, David (i) GOP 14,80027%

Rumana, Scott (i) GOP 14,749 27%

Ordway, Christine Dem 12,86523%

Vagianos, Paul Dem 12,84023%


N.J. election 2015: Results of Assembly, local, county, school races

Want to know who won in your town or district? Here are the links to the results. Robert Sciarrino, Read more

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Ridgewood Vote Smart : Parking ,NJ Assembly and Bergen County Freeholder


Candidates for North Jersey municipal elections


Here are the candidates running for municipal and county office in Tuesday’s elections across Bergen, Passaic and Morris counties. (D) denotes a Democrat; (G) Green Party; (I) independent; (L) Libertarian; (R) Republican. Asterisks indicate an incumbent. Polls will be open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.


Bergen County

Board of Freeholders (two terms)

Steven A. Tanelli (D)*

Tracy Silna Zur (D)*

John D. Mitchell (R)

Kenneth P. Tyburczy (R)

Richard A. Siegel (G)

(unexpired term)

Thomas J. Sullivan (D)*

Daisy Ortiz-Berger (R)

Peter J. Rohrman (L)


Question: Build downtown parking garage?
District 40 Assembly


Paul Vagianos
Christine Ordway


David Russo  – Incumbent Russo was first elected to the chamber in 1989.
Scott Rumana  – Incumbent Rumana was first elected to the chamber in 2007.