State governments have become increasingly more important as they need to fill the void left by Washington politicians. Given the inability of our current Legislative District 23 (LD23) Assemblymen to accomplish much of anything in the New Jersey State Legislature, it is imperative to elect representatives who will represent the values of LD23 constituents and will actually be effective in getting legislation passed in the New Jersey Assembly. Denise and Marisa believe it is time for a change in LD23 so that our voices as voters are actually heard.
Transportation / Infrastructure
Legislative District 23 has seen an exodus of young people and young families leaving the district in recent years. In parts of LD23, home values have still not recovered from the Great Recession while other parts of New Jersey and the United States have experienced a boom. With lengthy car commutes for many LD23 residents and difficulty attracting and retaining larger businesses in the District, it’s little wonder that our District home values continue to decline.
Denise and Marisa believe that public transportation in the community is more essential than ever. Our many LD23 commuters need reliable transportation and the New Jersey Transit system must be overhauled to stop the numerous delays and other problems for commuters in our District.
Expanded bus or train service to our local communities in parts of Hunterdon and Warren counties would make our communities more attractive to businesses and new residents. However, Denise and Marisa also want to ensure that any growth in our community maintains our bucolic, rural atmosphere. They believe that the expansion of bus or train service to our local communities will reduce traffic and the feel of urban sprawl, while also improving our local air quality. An added benefit of expanded bus and train service would be opportunities for small business growth, with visitors from urban areas coming to enjoy our District’s natural beauty and small town shopping.
Protecting Our Natural Resources
Legislative District 23 is the source of drinking water for 1.2 million New Jersey residents. Denise and Marisa feel strongly that natural resources like our access to clean drinking water need to be protected, without substantially limiting the growth of new business in the District. Yet our current Assemblymen both have abysmal lifetime environmental records, according to the New Jersey League of Conservation Voters of 32% and 38%* respectively.
Our current Assemblyman also refuse to take a stand against strengthening pipeline review in New Jersey, taking the cowardly way out by abstaining from voting at all on relevant legislation introduced in New Jersey. Both Assemblymen also voted against a simple bill to ask the Governor to join the climate alliance when the current Administration pulled the United States out of the Paris Climate Accord.
*https://www.njlcv.org/sites/default/files/2017-10/scorecard-2017-assembly.pdf- 32% lifetime environmental voting record for John DiMaio, 38% lifetime environmental voting record for Erik Peterson.
As every New Jersey resident knows, healthcare costs continue to skyrocket, and these costs are being shouldered by all New Jersey residents. Denise and Marisa believe that the State of New Jersey can reduce some of these skyrocketing costs by requiring the simplification of the medical billing process, by implementing penalties for overbilling, requiring transparency from health insurance companies and providers operating in the State, and by implementing other regulations to protect consumers.
Denise and Marisa also strongly believe that residents in the State of New Jersey need expanded access to affordable mental health care and substance abuse treatment in light of the increasing opioid drug crisis spreading across our State. Additionally, should politicians in Washington, DC make good on the threat to stop requiring health insurance coverage for people with preexisting conditions, Denise and Marisa will work to ensure that the State of New Jersey protects those vulnerable individuals.
Protecting Our Children
Denise and Marisa also believe in taking a strong stance on issues to protect New Jersey children. For example, our current Assemblymen both voted against legislation to require silent panic buttons to be installed in all New Jersey public schools which would send a direct alert to the local police department in the event of an active shooter situation. Denise and Marisa also support other ideas to protect our children, such as implementing “Stop the Bleed” programs in New Jersey schools to train students and teachers in basic emergency medical care, providing the necessary lifesaving tools such as tourniquets. Denise and Marisa believe that that our children are the future of New Jersey and they will make our children a priority from their health and safety to their education.
The gigantic elephant in the room for every New Jersey resident is the extremely high taxes that we all must pay. Our current Assemblymen have had a decade in office to improve the tax burden for LD23 constituents, yet they have not accomplished any tax relief for their constituents. Denise and Marisa believe strongly that it is time for a change in representation. If our current Assemblymen have not been able to provide any results in ten (10) years, it is time to give Denise and Marisa a chance to try to tackle the issue in Trenton.