***MULTIMEDIA PACKAGE*** ASSEMBLY DEM COMMITTEE CHAIRS ON HEARINGS FOCUSED ON IMPACT OF BUDGET & ECONOMY ON NJ RESIDENTS

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(TRENTON) — Assembly Democratic committee chairs on Monday issued a multimedia package discussing the impact of the economy and Gov. Christie’s state budget on the lives of New Jersey residents.

The multimedia package consists of remarks from six Assembly committee chairs — Assembly members Gary S. Schaer (D-Passaic), Albert Coutinho (D-Essex), Pamela R. Lampitt (D-Camden), Upendra J. Chivukula (D-Somerset), Herb Conaway, M.D. (D-Burlington) and Paul D. Moriarty (D-Gloucester) — audio of same and a transcript of the committee chairs’ remarks.

The video can be accessed directly via our website — www.assemblydems.com — or by clicking here.

The audio file is available upon request.

A transcript of comments from the committee chairs is appended below:

Assemblyman Gary S. Schaer (D-Passaic), Assembly Financial Institutions and Insurance Committee Chairman:
“The purpose of today’s hearing is to look at the issue of access of capitol…”

Assemblyman Albert Coutinho (D-Essex), Assembly Commerce and Economic Development Committee Chairman:
“We’re looking at cuts to the state’s UEZ program – the Urban Enterprise Zone Program…”

Assemblywoman Pamela R. Lampitt (D-Camden), Assembly Higher Education Committee Chairwoman:
“Today we were looking at the TAG award grants and the problem that there’s not enough funding for our students…”

Assemblyman Upendra J. Chivukula (D-Somerset), Assembly Telecommunications and Utilities Committee Chairman:
“We’re looking at complete funding cuts of the New Jersey Commission on Science and Technology…”

Assemblyman Herb Conaway, M.D. (D-Burlington), Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee Chairman:
“And we are going to discuss the pain that comes from these cuts today, because I think it’s important for the public to know about these things.

“It’s part of our education of the public of the kinds of things that government does.”

Schaer:
“The purpose of the hearing is to investigate. To better understand what’s going on. That’s exactly what we have to accomplish today.

Assemblyman Paul D. Moriarty (D-Gloucester), Assembly Consumer Affairs Committee Chairman:
“We’re going to discuss today, and hear from different industries, about how this is going to affect their business; how it will affect consumers.

“And then we’ll look to see whether we can come up with a bill that we can pass and amend this and change this so that we don’t have this burdensome red tape in government bureaucracy that I see spreading here.”br>
Lampitt:
“So, unless we look at this in totality, we’re never going to be able to solve the problems.”

Conaway:
“We want to make sure that the pain that comes to people when these kinds of cuts are made informs future budgetary decisions.”

Chivukula:
“I want to make sure that people understand that a lot of times just cutting, cutting, cutting is not going to solve the problem.

“You need to invest intelligently.”

Coutinho:
“At the end of the day what we’re looking at is the fact that the state government needs to do more to create better economic development in the State of New Jersey.”

Schaer:
“I think that we could look forward – as a result of today’s hearings — to have some practical ideas that we’ll be able to translate into legislation that can propel New Jersey’s economy further and faster than it’s going now.”