New Jersey's 13th Legislative District

Senator Declan O'Scanlon

Senator Declan O'Scanlon
Senator Michael Testa
Senator Sam Thompson
Senator Steve Oroho

Republican Budget Committee Members to Propose Dedicating $600 Million Horizon Payment to Improving Health Care in NJ

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The four Republican members of the Senate Budget & Appropriations Committee will move an amendment tomorrow to legislation restructuring Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey to require a proposed $600 million payment from the insurer to be deposited into a new nonprofit entity that is dedicated to rate stabilization and improving the quality and efficiency of health care in New Jersey.

The Republican members of the Senate Budget Committee will propose an amendment to legislation restructuring Horizon BCBSNJ to require a proposed $600 million payment from the insurer to be deposited into a new nonprofit entity that is dedicated to rate stabilization and improving the quality and efficiency of health care in New Jersey. (Pixabay)

The members — Senate Republican Budget Officer Steven Oroho (R-24), Senator Sam Thompson (R-12), Senator Declan O’Scanlon (R-13), and Senator Michael Testa (R-1) — said they are concerned that premiums paid by Horizon’s policyholders and ratepayers will be consumed by the State’s General Fund to pay for spending unrelated to healthcare.

“In an ideal world, the excess premiums paid to Horizon by policyholders, small businesses, local governments, and taxpayers would be returned to customers in the form of lower future premiums,” the Republican senators said in a joint statement. “It’s clear, however, that’s not what this rushed legislation envisions. If the sponsors are going to require a massive payment to the State, we believe the proceeds should be dedicated by law to improving health care in New Jersey in a way that benefits and supports the needs of the communities that paid the premiums in the first place.”

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District 13

O’Scanlon & DiMaso: Public Health Emergency Reports Must Be Public Record

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Legislation sponsored by Senator Declan O’Scanlon and Assemblywoman Serena DiMaso (both R-Monmouth) which makes certain information related to public health emergencies accessible under the Open Public Records Act (OPRA) was approved by the Assembly Health Committee.

Sen. Declan O’Scanlon and Asw. Serena DiMaso’s legislation making certain information related to public health emergencies accessible under the Open Public Records Act (OPRA) has advanced. (©iStock)

“The foundation of a healthy democracy is an informed public; based on an agreed upon set of concrete facts to empower them to make educated decisions as they so choose,” said O’Scanlon. “We’ve run into issues throughout the pandemic where information was simply not as accessible as it should have been. The administration has, at times, refused to answer too many basic questions. All elected officials should tirelessly endeavor to ensure their constituency is well informed; particularly when our decisions have the ability to cripple our struggling businesses and taxpayers.”

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Senator Declan O'Scanlon

O’Scanlon & DiMaso Support Parents Against Extended School Closures

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Say State Needs to Get on the Same Page to Keep Schools Open

Senator Declan O’Scanlon and Assemblywoman Serena DiMaso (both R-Monmouth) supported local parents from Matawan-Aberdeen Regional School District following news that the school district would switch to all-remote learning for a prolonged period.

Senator O’Scanlon and Assemblywoman DiMaso voiced support for Matawan-Aberdeen Regional School District parents who are calling for a 14-day quarantine rather than the six-week closure planned by the district. (Wikipedia)

“We stand with the Matawan-Aberdeen Regional parents and their concerns in closing schools for six weeks, and in their very reasonable requests of the district administration and school board,” said O’Scanlon. “We are all for combating COVID on every scientifically justified front. However, just like we’ve seen in NYC it doesn’t appear that the Matawan-Aberdeen Regional’s decision makers are following the science and including parents in communication efforts. We need to all get on the same page here. The parents are asking for a 14-day closure of schools to comply with quarantine standards, instead of a full six weeks. That’s completely reasonable.”

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Senator Declan O'Scanlon
Senator Michael Testa
Senator Sam Thompson
Senator Steve Oroho

Senate Republicans Repeat Call for Passage of Substantial Aid Package for Small Businesses & Nonprofits as State Budget Surplus Grows

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Sales Tax Revenues Continue to Outpace Murphy Administration’s Dire Revenue Projections

As sales tax collections continue to outpace the Murphy Administration’s dire revenue estimates for FY 2021 and the State budget surplus grows, the Republican members of the Senate Budget & Appropriations Committee repeated their calls for action on a substantial aid package to support small businesses and nonprofits struggling with the impact of COVID-19.

As sales tax collections continue to outpace the Murphy Administration’s dire revenue estimates for FY 2021 and the State budget surplus grows, the Republican members of the Senate Budget Committee repeated their calls for action on a substantial aid package to support small businesses and nonprofits struggling with the impact of COVID-19. (©iStock)

“While more and more of our small businesses are closing shop with little help from the State, Governor Murphy only seems willing to look out for his own political interests,” said Senator Declan O’Scanlon (R-13). “He’s building a massive surplus with borrowed and taxed funds that’s not helping anyone but himself. We’re hoping our Democrat colleagues in the Legislature will do the right thing and join us in passing a substantial aid package to help small businesses and nonprofits survive.”

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Senator Declan O'Scanlon
Senator Michael Testa

O’Scanlon & Testa Urge Governor, Legislative Leaders to Call Special Session to Approve Business Aid Package

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Senator Declan O’Scanlon (R-13) and Senator Michael Testa (R-1) sent a letter (click here for PDF) today to Governor Phil Murphy, Senate President Steve Sweeney, and Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin urging for a special session of the Legislature to be convened to adopt an emergency aid package for small businesses and nonprofits impacted by COVID-19.

Sen. Declan O’Scanlon and Sen. Michael Testa sent a letter to Gov. Phil Murphy, Senate President Steve Sweeney, and Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin urging a special legislative session to adopt an emergency aid package for small businesses and nonprofits impacted by COVID-19. (Pixabay)

The senators, both members of the Senate Budget & Appropriations Committee, sponsor S-3210, which appropriates $300 million of the CARES Act relief funds received by the State to the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA) to provide financial support, such as loans or grants, to small businesses and not-for-profit organizations for the costs associated with business operation interruptions caused by any State-required closures due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Their letter follows this weekend’s call by Republican legislative leaders for a special session to consider the measure.

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Senator Declan O'Scanlon

O’Scanlon Votes ‘No’ on Bill that Would Establish Legal Adult Use Marijuana Sales

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Says Legislation Does Not Respect the Will of the Voters nor Government Transparency

Last evening, Senator Declan O’Scanlon (R-Monmouth) vehemently voted “No” in the Senate Budget Committee session on the enabling legislation for the adult use marijuana marketplace.

Senator O’Scanlon voted ‘no’ on the enabling legislation for the adult use marijuana marketplace, stating the bill does not deliver what the voters approved earlier this month. (Pixabay)

“To the more than 67 percent of voters that recently voted yes to legalize adult use marijuana, I hear you, and I am fighting to honor your wishes. The bill before our committee yesterday does not do that,” O’Scanlon said. “We were still getting substantive amendments as we began the hearing – interpretation is all we have.”

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Senator Declan O'Scanlon

O’Scanlon-Sweeney-Greenstein Bill Would Ensure Right to Display American Flag Over NJ Highways

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Acting to ensure the right to display the American flag over the highway overpasses on the New Jersey Turnpike and roadways operated by the South Jersey Transportation Authority, the Senate today unanimously approved a bill, sponsored by Senator Declan O’Scanlon, Senate President Steve Sweeney, and Senator Linda Greenstein, that would exempt the displays from the rules prohibiting the practice.

The Senate unanimously approved a Sens. O’Scanlon, Sweeney & Greenstein bill that would ensure the right to display the American flag over New Jersey highways. (Wikimedia Commons)

“It started after 9/11….but who doesn’t still smile with pride when they see our flags flying on bridges throughout New Jersey? Old Glory should be allowed to fly high above the Turnpike without the risk of removal,” said Senator Declan O’Scanlon (R-Monmouth). “This measure will protect our residents’ patriotic rights to display the red, white, and blue for commuters and travelers on New Jersey’s busy highways. Together, we can keep this symbol of freedom and democracy flying proudly and secured on the Garden State’s bypasses and bridges.”
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Senator Declan O'Scanlon

O’Scanlon: NJ Should Participate in NH’s Lawsuit Against MA Over Taxation of Remote Workers

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Senator Declan O’Scanlon said New Jersey would be wise to consider filing amicus briefs in support of New Hampshire’s lawsuit against Massachusetts to end the taxation of remote workers who no longer commute across state lines to the Bay State.

Sen. Declan O’Scanlon said New Jersey would be wise to consider filing amicus briefs in support of New Hampshire’s lawsuit against Massachusetts to end the taxation of remote workers who no longer commuter across state lines to the Bay State. (Pixabay)

“New Hampshire is well justified in challenging the unfair taxation of its residents’ income by Massachusetts now that many former commuters to the Bay State are working remotely from home,” said O’Scanlon (R-Monmouth). “New Jersey faces the same issue with our neighbor across the Hudson, only on a much larger scale.”

The Senate Budget & Appropriations Committee advanced legislation today that requires the State Treasurer to examine and report upon New York’s taxation of New Jersey residents’ income.

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Senator Declan O'Scanlon
Senator Kristin Corrado

Corrado and O’Scanlon: Shut Down the Scandal-Ridden SDA

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Amid new allegations of nepotism and cronyism, Senator Kristin Corrado and Senator Declan O’Scanlon called for the closure of the New Jersey Schools Development Authority (SDA).

Amid new allegations of nepotism and cronyism, Sen. Kristin Corrado and Sen. Declan O’Scanlon called for the closure of the New Jersey SDA. (SenateNJ.com)

“To quote Ronald Reagan, ‘a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we’ll ever see on this earth.’” said Corrado (R-40). “After news of this latest scandal and subsequent lawsuit, the School Development Authority is past the point of no return. I stand with Senate President Sweeney and call for the termination of this corrupt entity that has demonstrated its existence achieves more harm than good.”

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Senator Declan O'Scanlon

O’Scanlon-Sweeney Bill Would Ensure Right to Display American Flag Over NJ Highways

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Acting to ensure the right to display the American flag over the highway overpasses on the New Jersey Turnpike and roadways operated by the South Jersey Transportation Authority, the Senate Transportation Committee this week approved a bill sponsored by Senator Declan O’Scanlon and Senate President Steve Sweeney that would exempt the displays from the rules prohibiting the practice.

Senator O’Scanlon’s bill, approved by the Senate Transportation Committee this week, would ensure the right to display the American flag over highway overpasses. (Wikimedia Commons)

“Who doesn’t smile and feel a sense of pride when we see these displays? The flag of the United States is the most recognized emblem of democracy in the world, symbolizing our freedoms and our contributions on behalf of those across the globe,” said Senator O’Scanlon (R-Monmouth). “This bill will protect our residents’ patriotic rights to display the red, white and blue for commuters and travelers on New Jersey’s busy highways. Our flag shall again fly proud and secured on bypasses and bridges without risk of removal by the New Jersey Turnpike Authority.”

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