Senator Jim Holzapfel (R-Ocean) said that he hopes the Governor’s desire to address New Jersey’s crisis of drug abuse as expressed in the State of the State address proves to be successful.
“Ocean County is ground zero for opioid abuse in New Jersey, and we’ve been fighting this battle against heroin and the diversion of prescription medications for years,” said Holzapfel. “We agree with the Governor that we need to do more to treat those suffering from addiction, but we also need to enhance our efforts to stop dangerous narcotics from ever becoming available for abuse.”
Legislation sponsored by District 10 legislators, Senator Jim Holzapfel and Assemblymen Dave Wolfe and Greg McGuckin, that continues the legislators’ efforts to prevent the cruel treatment of animals has passed the Senate Economic Growth Committee.
“As legislators and pet owners, we are passionate about protecting animals from abuse,” said Senator Holzapfel. This legislation aims to prevent the chaining of animals for long periods of time rendering them defenseless and unable to care for themselves. That cruel and inhumane treatment is deplorable and must be stopped.”
In response to recent findings of fentanyl related deaths by the Office of the State Medical Examiner, Senator Jim Holzapfel (R-10) is calling on the Senate to finally post his bill, S-1026, for a vote. His legislation doubles criminal penalties for unlawfully manufacturing or distributing fentanyl – a prescription opioid found to be up to 50 times more powerful than heroin.
“Fentanyl deaths are increasing at a rapid pace,” said Holzapfel. “The penalties for illegally dispensing or manufacturing this deadly drug must, at the very least, match those for dealing heroin or cocaine. Unless the New Jersey Senate moves forward to enact an effective deterrent, the death toll will continue to rise.”
The Senate Budget & Appropriations Committee has passed legislation sponsored by Senator Jim Holzapfel (R-10) that seeks to deter dangerous driving that may harm children as they board or exit a school bus.
The legislation, S-211, establishes a pilot program for municipalities and school districts to use video monitoring systems to help enforce laws against illegally passing a school bus.
“Many of the children who are killed and injured in school bus related accidents are struck by drivers who illegally pass a bus while the red lights are flashing and the stop sign is extended,” said Holzapfel. “The sad truth is that many drivers choose to break the law in such a dangerous manner because they think they can get away with it. Installing cameras to catch every driver who passes a school bus illegally will be an effective deterrent.”
Senator Jim Holzapfel and Assemblymen Greg McGuckin and Dave Wolfe (all R-10) have introduced a bill that would exclude passenger and freight rail projects from being funded by proceeds from the recent gas tax increase.
“We know that New Jerseyans are already the most highly taxed people in the nation, which is why we voted ‘NO’ on raising the gas tax,” stated the 10th District legislators. “As a promise to our constituents, we will fight to ensure that the gas taxes paid by our constituents aren’t diverted to pork rail projects that only benefit Democrats’ districts.”
A bill sponsored by Senator Jim Holzapfel (R- Ocean) to prevent possible terrorist attacks by ensuring all commercial vehicles have the proper signage and identification was advanced by the Senate Transportation Committee.
“I’ve seen so many unmarked box trucks, and it can make you feel a little uneasy,” Senator Holzapfel said. “Without the proper markings, you can never know who the operator is or if they’re trying to hide something. It’s a public safety risk that we can eliminate if we more adequately enforce our existing laws. It’s a public safety risk that we can eliminate if we more adequately enforce our existing laws.”
Senator Jim Holzapfel (R-Ocean) issued the following statement on his vote against a gas tax increase:
“I strongly reject the premise that the legislation advanced today represents ‘tax fairness’ for all New Jersey families.
“That is certainly not the case for the tens of thousands of Ocean County commuters in my district who cannot afford to pay any more to live and work in this state.
“That’s why I chose to vote ‘NO’ today.
Senator Jim Holzapfel, Assemblymen Dave Wolfe and Greg McGuckin (R-10) will vote against a $2 billion gas tax plan that will disproportionately impact Ocean County drivers.
“There are more than 80,000 EZ Pass users in our legislative district alone,” Senator Holzapfel (R-Ocean) said. “These drivers are already paying the highest tolls in the nation. They simply cannot afford to pay any more to use New Jersey’s roads and highways. We will not stand silently by and watch as the legislature approves a 23-cent gas tax hike that will impose severe financial hardships on the people we were elected to serve. Taxpayers in Ocean County and across this state deserve better.”
Criminal penalties for unlawfully manufacturing or distributing fentanyl – a prescription opioid found to be up to 50 times more powerful than heroin – would be doubled under legislation sponsored by Senator Jim Holzapfel (R-Ocean.) The bill, S-1026, has been advanced by the Senate Health Committee.
“Fentanyl was first put on the market to help terminal patients cope with severe, end of life pain but now, officials are reporting that it’s in almost every pack of heroin found in Ocean County,” Senator Holzapfel said. “We have to do everything we can to deter criminals from dispensing or manufacturing this deadly drug. The penalties for committing these crimes must, at the very least, match those for dealing heroin or cocaine.”
Proposed 24% Gas Rate Increase Would Be Reduced to 7.4%
Senator Jim Holzapfel and Assemblymen Dave Wolfe and Greg McGuckin (all R-10) praised news of a settlement that is set to be approved by the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) slashing a 24 percent natural gas rate increase that had been proposed by New Jersey Natural Gas (NJNG) to fund infrastructure improvements.
Under the terms of the settlement, the increase that will be voted on by the BPU on Friday would amount to an extra $7 on the average customer’s gas bill, representing a 7.4 percent increase.
“We fought against the massive 24 percent rate hike NJNG had proposed, and we succeeded in reducing the increase to a reasonable amount that will be more affordable to residents,” said Holzapfel. “While nobody likes their bills going up, an extra $7 a month is much more palatable than the $22 monthly increase NJNG had initially proposed.”