Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Jen Beck Press Release

This is very necessary legislation. I hope it gets support. Pretty impressive that Jen Beck is one month out of an election and she's taking steps forward on an issue that is incedibly important (instead of the lame duck press stroking legislation that tends to come out at this time of year).

On a political note, take a look at the line I bolded. Is Beck already preparing to take on state Sen. Karcher? This could get interesting...



Assemblywoman-elect Jennifer Beck, R-Monmouth/Mercer, announced today that she will pre-file a bill which would repeal S-1701/A-99, a bill passed by the Legislature in 2004 which placed budget caps on school budgets and forced schools to reduce their surpluses. The legislation has been a disaster, with schools being forced to lay off teachers and cut programs for children in the wake of higher healthcare and fuel costs, and parents in suburban school districts growing more and more angry as the effects of the legislation become apparent.

“This is a perfect example of what happens when a poorly thought out bill gets hustled through the Legislature with little or no debate”, said Beck. “In a rush to ‘do something’, no one examines the possible side effects of the law and no voices of opposition are allowed to have their say.”

Beck was referring to the fact that the bill went from committee to final passage in only ten days. She also noted that the bill was passed right before the Legislature passed a budget which contained a massive $4 billion increase saying, “at the same time they were asking schools to tighten their belts, they were spending like drunken sailors. And who pays? The kids do.”

She also noted that both Senator Ellen Karcher and Assemblyman Mike Panter, Democrats who represent the 12th District, voted in favor of S-1701.

“Now, our schools and children are in a dire predicament, which was totally avoidable. In my hometown of Red Bank we have teachers being laid off, with more scheduled to be laid off next year as well. Schools all over the district have been reduced to lowering the thermostats during the day and asking children to wear warmer clothes to school because they can’t cope with the unexpected rise in fuel costs. This is madness.”

“It’s time to admit that the law is a failure, scrap it, and start from scratch, with input from all sides on how best to balance fiscal responsibility in schools with financial flexibility for education officials. The bill I will be sponsoring will do just that.”


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