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.
Assembly Panel OKs Lampitt, Benson, Vainieri Huttle & Tucker Bill to Help Residents with Disabilities Access ServicesLegislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Pamela Lampitt, Daniel Benson, Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Cleopatra Tucker to increase awareness of the application processes for programs and services available to New Jersey residents with developmental disabilities gained approval from an Assembly panel this week.
"For many individuals with developmental disabilities, the ability to live independently and be economically stable depends on the ability to access the appropriate housing, transportation and the proper medical and behavioral care. Unfortunately, gaining that access can be a complex and confusing process," said Lampitt (D-Camden/Burlington). "This legislation will help ensure that residents of New Jersey who have developmental disabilities can get the services they need."
DeAngelo, Mukherji & Vainieri Huttle Bill to Require NJ Transit to Notify Public Prior to Service Reduction Clears Assembly PanelLegislation Assembly Democrats Wayne P. DeAngelo, Raj Mukherji and Valerie Vainieri Huttle sponsored to ensure that mass transit riders are properly informed of proposed service cuts recently was advanced by an Assembly panel.
"Any time there's a proposal for bus or train service to be eliminated, people's ability to get to work so they can keep a roof over their family's head and put food on the table is at stake. That's always substantial," said DeAngelo (D-Mercer/Middlesex). "At the very least, NJ Transit passengers ought to be informed of how these changes may affect their lives and have the opportunity to voice an opinion."
Lampitt, Benson, Vainieri Huttle & Eustace Bill to Examine Pedestrian Safety Statewide Clears Assembly PanelLegislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Pamela Lampitt, Daniel Benson, Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Tim Eustace to create a council within the Department of Transportation to help improve pedestrian safety in New Jersey was advanced Monday by an Assembly panel.
"New Jersey, because of its high density, has one of the biggest causes for concern when it comes to pedestrian safety," said Lampitt (D-Camden/Burlington). "Whether it's urban, suburban or rural, every area of our state has its own unique set of issues that threatens pedestrian safety. This council will be tasked with finding solutions to make New Jersey a more pedestrian-friendly state."
Vainieri Huttle & Benson Bill to Ensure Snow Does Not Block Public Access for the Disabled Gains Assembly Panel ApprovalLegislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Daniel Benson to ensure that critical public access points for the disabled are not blocked by snow was approved by an Assembly panel on Monday.
"As we saw with the blizzard two weeks ago, large amounts of snow can hamper most people from getting around," said Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen). "Now imagine that you're disabled and mobility becomes all but impossible if critical public areas aren't plowed or shoveled properly. The removal of snow from public roadways, walkways, and other areas open to the public is a critical service during an emergency snow event."
Vainieri Huttle Bill to Extend Emergency Rental Assistance Benefits to Disabled Individuals AdvancesLegislation sponsored by Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle to ensure the continuation of emergency rental assistance for certain disabled individuals or caretakers of individuals with disabilities was approved by an Assembly panel on Monday.
"We're talking about individuals with extreme hardships who are facing severe challenges," said Vainieri Huttle. "The state should be an active and helpful partner when it comes to ensuring that they have a roof over their heads. This change will hopefully make a big difference in their lives and, at the very least, provide sufficient notice should these benefits change so that they can seek other assistance."
Vainieri Huttle Bill to Help Guard Child Protection Caseworkers Gains Assembly Panel Approval
Bill Sparked by Attacks that Left Several Seriously Injured is Re-introduced after Christie Veto Continues to Leave Caseworkers VulnerableAn Assembly panel on Monday advanced legislation sponsored by Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle to help safeguard child protection workers from the kind of attacks over the past year that left one seriously injured and sent two others to the hospital.
The bill (A-2322), known as "Leah's Law," is named in honor of the Division of Child Protection and Permanency caseworker who was nearly stabbed to death while performing her duties for the division in Camden in November 2014.
Oliver, Handlin, Vainieri Huttle & Quijano Bipartisan Bill Package to Combat Abuse against the Elderly & Disabled Gains Assembly Panel Approval
New Policy Strategy is Result of Ongoing Meetings between Oliver, Handlin & Stakeholders throughout NJAn Assembly panel on Monday approved a bipartisan package of bills sponsored by Assemblywomen Sheila Oliver, Amy Handlin, Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Annette Quijano to combat abuse and fraud against the elderly and disabled in New Jersey.
The bipartisan legislation approved today is the result of ongoing discussions between former Speaker Oliver, Deputy Republican Leader Handlin and more than a dozen prominent stakeholder agencies and corporations from throughout the state. The bills are a legislative response to help senior citizens avoid being swindled by unscrupulous scammers.
Coughlin, Lampitt, Singleton, Benson, Vainieri Huttle & Mosquera Bill to Add Cyber-Harassment to Domestic Violence Statutes Clears Assembly Panel(TRENTON) - Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Craig Coughlin, Pamela Lampitt, Troy Singleton, Daniel Benson, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, and Gabriela Mosquera to bolster protections against cyber-harassment for domestic violence victims in New Jersey cleared its first legislative hurdle on Monday.
The bill (A-1946), sponsored by Coughlin, Lampitt, Singleton, Benson, Vainieri Huttle and Mosquera, would add cyber-harassment to the list of crimes considered domestic violence under the "Prevention of Domestic Violence Act of 1991."
In doing so, the bill would allow temporary and permanent restraining orders on the grounds that the person seeking the order is a victim of cyber-harassment.
"The internet is being used as another way for domestic violence predators to stalk and harass their victims," said Coughlin (D-Middlesex). "It's time to put cyber-stalking and harassment on the books to continue to protect domestic violence victims under the law."
Assembly Panel Advances Johnson, Caride, Schaer & Vainieri Huttle Bill Granting New Jersey Jurisdiction to Prosecute Child Endangerment Cases that take Place Out-of-State
Bill Was Inspired by Sexual Misconduct on Bergen County School Trip to GermanyAn Assembly panel on Monday approved legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Gordon Johnson, Marlene Caride, Gary Schaer and Valerie Vainieri Huttle to expand the state's jurisdiction to prosecute crimes involving endangering the welfare of a child from New Jersey that take place outside the state.
The bill was prompted by the state Supreme Court case of State v. Sumulikoski, which determined that New Jersey courts do not have jurisdiction to prosecute school officials from Bergen County who were chaperones on a school trip to Germany where they allegedly engaged in sexual conduct with students.
Assembly Democratic Bill to Bolster Rental and Lease Protections for Domestic Violence Victims Clears Committee
Bill Sponsored by Assembly Democrats Vainieri Huttle, Lagana, Mosquera, Wimberly, Jimenez and Pintor Marin(TRENTON) - An Assembly panel on Monday released legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Joseph Lagana, Gabriela Mosquera, Wimberly, Jimenez and Pintor Marin to provide rental and lease protections for domestic violence victims.
The bill (A-916) is designed to enhance the protections offered under the "New Jersey Safe Housing Act" by prohibiting a landlord from terminating a tenancy, failing to renew a tenancy, or refusing to enter into a rental agreement due to a tenant's or prospective tenant's status as a domestic violence victim.
"Victims of domestic violence must deal with their life being thrown into upheaval," said Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen). "The last thing they need is to have their home uprooted through no fault of their own."
Tucker, Vainieri Huttle, Quijano, Wimberly & Mosquera Bill Criminalizing ‘Upskirting’ Advances
Measure Cracking Down on Illegally Photographing Under Someone's Clothing also Strengthens New Jersey's Right to Privacy StatuteLegislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Cleopatra G. Tucker, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Annette Quijano, Benjie Wimberly and Gabriela Mosquera to criminalize the act of secretly photographing or recording under a person's clothing - commonly referred to as "upskirting" gained approval from an Assembly panel on Monday.
"With today's level of technology, most people with cell phones are essentially walking around with an Internet linked video camera in their pocket at all times," said Tucker (D-Essex). "This can lead certain people to assume it is acceptable to 'document' whatever they choose, even if it violates someone else's privacy. We are here today to say that should not, cannot and will not be the case in New Jersey."
Assembly Democratic Bill to Bring World-Class Gaming to North Jersey, Help Atlantic City & Fund Programs & Property Tax Relief for Senior & Disabled Residents Clears Assembly
Caputo, Prieto, Schaer, Vainieri Huttle, Mukherji, Lagana, Eustace, Caride, Jimenez, Johnson, McKeon, Giblin, Oliver, Spencer, Jasey, Tucker & Pintor Marin Bill Would Allow Two North Jersey Casinos, Provide Significant Funding for Programs & Property Tax Relief for Seniors and Disabled & Help Atlantic City and Horse Racing IndustryAn Assembly panel on Monday advanced legislation sponsored by Assembly Democratic lawmakers asking voters to allow the creation of world-class casino gaming facilities in North Jersey and use money from that expansion to fund programs and property tax relief for senior citizens and disabled residents, along with help for Atlantic City and the horse racing industry.
Under current law, casino gambling is permitted only in Atlantic City, but the constitutional amendment proposed by Assembly Democrats Ralph Caputo, Speaker Vincent Prieto, Gary Schaer, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Raj Mukherji, Joseph Lagana, Tim Eustace, Marlene Caride, Angelica Jimenez, Gordon Johnson and John McKeon, Tom Giblin, Sheila Oliver, L. Grace Spencer, Mila Jasey, Cleopatra Tucker and Eliana Pintor Marin, would allow the Legislature to pass laws to permit casinos in two northern New Jersey counties.
Vainieri Huttle Bill to Expand Steroid Testing for High School Athletes Approved by Assembly PanelLegislation sponsored by Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen) to expand steroid testing and education throughout New Jersey high schools was approved Monday by the Assembly Education Committee.
"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. "I can understand how a young person who has hopes of playing professionally wants to get an edge over the competition, but risking your health is not worth it. Random testing of student athletes can help deter steroid use among young people who might be more concerned with getting caught than the harmful side effects."
Vainieri Huttle: Nothing Vague About NJ Being the 1st to Tackle BullyingAssembly Human Services Committee Chairwoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen) had the following published recently in the Newark Star-Ledger:
"The Feb. 4 Star-Ledger editorial "Will New Jersey finally take the time to fix its broken bullying law?" had a misleading headline, as well as some missing facts.
What the editorial failed to grasp is that you cannot take a complex behavior that manifests itself in tens of thousands of different ways, a behavior that at times we don't fully understand, and wrap a tight definition around it. It just doesn't work that way..."