Welcome to my Virtual District Office!
This page has been created to make it easier for you to learn how my office can be your advocate in Trenton and to get answers to some common questions about state government. In addition, you can visit the Web page of your town from the links below. You also can click to send me and my staff an e-mail. Whether you have a problem that needs to be solved or just want to send your opinion on a pressing state issue, my office is at your service.
As we move forward, this page will be updated and expanded, so please visit often.
Chaparro, Vainieri Huttle, Benson, Jimenez, Mukherji & Downey Bill to Establish Alert System for Hit-and-Runs Passes Assembly
Legislation Honors Zackhary Simmons, 21-Year-Old Man Killed In June Accident(TRENTON) - Legislation Assembly Democrats Annette Chaparro, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Daniel R. Benson, Angelica Jimenez, Raj Mukherji and Joann Downey sponsored to establish an emergency alert system to help more quickly apprehend drivers responsible for fatal hit-and-run accidents was approved by the full Assembly, 71-0, on Wednesday.
The legislation commemorates the life of Zackhary Simmons, a 21-year-old man who died in Hoboken in June after being hit by a vehicle that subsequently left the scene.
"I hope this bill reminds drivers thinking of fleeing an accident that the whole state will be looking for you, and you will be caught," said Chaparro (D-Hudson). "I want to thank the Simmons family for working so hard on this bill and sharing their time and inspiring this legislation to honor Zack and encourage other drivers to stop and help an injured person instead of cowardly fleeing a scene."
Assembly Grants Final Approval to Democratic Measure to Expand Fertility Coverage in NJ
Legislation Sponsored by Lampitt, Vainieri Huttle, McKeon, Mukherji, Holley, Caride, DowneyLegislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Pamela Lampitt, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, John McKeon, Raj Mukherji, Jamel Holley, Marlene Caride, and Joann Downey to increase fertility coverage for New Jersey families received final legislative approval 58-6-3 by the full Assembly on Wednesday.
Under current law, hospital, medical and health service corporations, commercial group insurers and health maintenance organizations are required, in certain circumstances, to provide coverage under group policies for medically necessary expenses incurred in the diagnosis and treatment of infertility. However, under the current definition of infertility certain women, such as same sex partners, women without partners, or women with partners who have protected intercourse, are not qualified to receive coverage for these benefits.
Vainieri Huttle, Benson, Lampitt, Johnson, McKnight & Sumter Bill to Guard Against Loss of Health Care Services for the Most Vulnerable Gains Final Legislative Approval
Bill Would Create Oversight Mechanism to Monitor Christie Administration's New Fee-For-Service Payment Model for Treatment ServicesLegislation Assembly Democrats Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Daniel Benson, Pamela Lampitt, Gordon Johnson, Angela McKnight and Shavonda Sumter sponsored to ensure that the state does not recklessly limit access to health care treatment by changing the way it pays treatment service providers gained final legislative approval 66-2 Wednesday by the full Assembly.
The bill (A-4146) was prompted by the state's decision to begin transitioning most community-based health care treatment services from the traditionally-used cost reimbursement system to a fee-for-service reimbursement system this past summer. The Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services plans to require all providers to complete the transition by July 2017, while the Division of Developmental Disabilities is transitioning providers in a more gradual fashion.
Wimberly, Lagana, Danielsen, Oliver, Vainieri Huttle, Mazzeo, Downey & Mukherji Bill to Establish 'HOPE Initiative' to Combat Opioid Epidemic Clears AssemblyLegislation Assembly Democrats Benjie Wimberly, Joseph Lagana, Joe Danielsen, Sheila Oliver, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Vincent Mazzeo, Joann Downey and Raj Mukherji sponsored to establish a public awareness campaign to educate New Jersey residents about the dangers of heroin and opioid addiction gained approval from the General Assembly on Wednesday.
"In roughly five years, New Jersey has seen an increase of more than 200 percent in the number of admissions to licensed or certified treatment programs for prescription drug abuse and a 700 percent increase over the last decade," said Wimberly (D-Bergen/Passaic). "The HOPE Initiative will give this crisis the focus it deserves in this state and educate residents on how to help themselves and loved ones who are addicted to heroin and opioids."
Vainieri Huttle & Jimenez Bill to Modify Law on Certain Heinous Crimes against Minors Clears Full Assembly
'Joan's Law' Honors Girl Scout Who Was Raped, Murdered by NeighborBipartisan legislation sponsored by Assemblywomen Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Angelica Jimenez to amend a state law expanding the penalties for murdering a minor while in the act of committing a sex crime was unanimously approved by the full Assembly on Wednesday.
The bill (A-373) would require life imprisonment without parole for persons convicted of the murder of a minor under the age of 18 during the commission of a sex crime. Current law requires such a penalty only when the victim is under age 14.
Prieto, Lagana, McKeon, Sumter, Benson & Vainieri Huttle Bill to Tackle Opioid Crisis Signed Into Law
Comprehensive Strategy Will Mandate Insurance Coverage, Limit Opioid Prescriptions, Boost Education & Raise AwarenessThe full Assembly on Wednesday granted final legislative approval 64-1-5 to a bipartisan bill sponsored by Speaker Vincent Prieto and Assembly Democrats Joseph Lagana, John McKeon, Shavonda Sumter, Daniel Benson and Valerie Vainieri Huttle that employs a multi-faceted approach to tackle the continuing opioid crisis in New Jersey from every angle. The bill was promptly sent to Gov. Christie's desk where it was signed into law shortly thereafter.
The legislation (S-3/A-3) employs a comprehensive strategy to address the opioid epidemic, including mandated insurance coverage for substance use disorders, restrictions on the prescription of opioids, patient notification on the dangers of abuse of controlled dangerous substances, and professional education on topics related to prescription opioids.
Vainieri Huttle, Jasey & Mukherji Bill to Expand Steroid Testing for High School Athletes Gains Final Legislative OKLegislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Mila Jasey and Raj Mukherji to expand steroid testing and education throughout New Jersey high schools was approved 37-0 Monday by the Senate, giving it final legislative approval.
"Student athletes who see steroids as a quick fix, fail to realize how detrimental they can be to a person's physical and psychological health," said Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen)...
Vainieri Huttle & Eustace Legislative Package to Solidify New Jersey’s Place as Leader in Transgender Civil Rights AdvancesAn Assembly panel on Monday approved a broad package of bills sponsored by Assembly Democrats Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Tim Eustace that will solidify New Jersey's position as a leader on transgender civil rights
"Now more than ever, we need to stand up for those who are being marginalized," said Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen). "Antiquated policies and attitudes towards transgender individuals have led to discrimination, violence, depression and suicide. While tremendous strides have been made in recent years to advance equality for members of the 'LGB' community, much more still needs to be done to help protect our brothers and sisters in the 'T' community."
Video: Vainieri Huttle on Her Transgender Rights Legislative Bill PackageAssembly Human Services Chairwoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen) discusses her legislative package that will solidify New Jersey's position as a leader on transgender civil rights.The bills (A-4567-4568-AJR139-AJR140) were released Monday by the Assembly Human Services Committee.
Watch the video here.