August 20, 2016 |
Gov. Christie on Thursday vetoed two bills that could have increased the ranks of New Jersey's voters, including a measure that would have automatically registered driver's license applicants. The other bill would have allowed 17-year-olds to vote in primaries if they would be 18 by the time of the general election. Christie nixed that bill as "legally questionable. " The Republican governor had harsher words for the automatic registration bill, which would have required the Motor Vehicle Commission to register all applicants for driver's licenses, permits, other identification cards, or renewals to vote unless they opted out. "This bill should be called 'the Voter Fraud Enhancement and Permission Act,' " Christie said in a veto message, asserting that the bill would "almost certainly register ineligible voters.
August 7, 2016 |
On an Atlantic City beach, a group of five adults recently sat a few feet from the ocean, some with lit cigars in hand. They placed makeshift ashtrays, really just upside-down seashells, next to their beach chairs, storing discarded cigars there. Two from the group - Monica Plumley, 48, of Glassboro, and Shelley Gatanis, 50, of Woodstown - had just met each other that day, and bonded over cigars. "I want to be able to do anything that's appropriate freely," Plumley said of their right to smoke on the sand.
June 25, 2016 |
TRENTON - New Jersey lawmakers on Thursday passed legislation that would nearly double the state's minimum wage to $15 an hour over the next five years, despite Gov. Christie's veto threat. Effective Jan. 1, 2017, the bill would raise the wage from the current $8.38 an hour to $10.10. The legislation would phase in greater increases through 2021, when the wage would reach $15 an hour. The wage would be tied to inflation to adjust for the cost of living. The legislation passed the state Senate by a vote of 21-18 on Thursday.
June 9, 2016 |
A stroke of Gov. Christie's pen ended hopes that more than 400 Delaware River Port Authority workers would soon resolve a long-simmering contract dispute. On Monday, Christie vetoed an agreement on economic terms that would have framed a contract resolution for 426 workers from three unions. "We were kind of shocked, quite frankly," said Howard Wells, president of Teamsters Local 676, which represents more than 200 of the workers waiting for a new contract. DRPA management communicated with the governor's office throughout the negotiation process and was hopeful that the terms would be acceptable to Trenton.
May 30, 2016
Sharif El-Mekki is the principal of Mastery Charter School, Shoemaker Campus, in Philadelphia Two weeks ago, Gov. Wolf vetoed a bill that would have helped school principals ensure that our most effective teachers are in classrooms for the 128,000 students who attend the Philadelphia School District. This is a missed opportunity to put the needs of kids over the needs of adults. House Bill 805 would have permitted district leaders, during layoffs, to furlough teachers who get "failing" or "needs improvement" grades on their annual evaluations.
May 25, 2016 |
Gov. Christie on Monday again conditionally vetoed a bill requiring domestic violence offenders to surrender firearms, saying current law already covers the issue. The Republican governor said in a veto message that the bill would place "redundant restrictions on firearms ownership while ignoring the larger problem of domestic violence. " Current law requires officers to seize a person's weapons when there is probable cause to believe the person has committed domestic violence, said Christie, who vetoed a version of the bill last year.
May 20, 2016 |
HARRISBURG - Gov. Wolf on Wednesday upheld his promise to veto a bill that would lessen the role of seniority in teacher layoffs. The Protecting Excellent Teachers Act, passed this month by the House and Senate, had become a political football. This week, a key Republican in the legislature warned the governor that the issue could resurface in next month's budget negotiations if he vetoed the bill. Supporters, including the state School Boards Association, said the measure would let districts protect their best teachers by using performance ratings, not seniority, in determining layoffs.
April 6, 2016
ISSUE | CLEAN ENERGY Wolf's veto works Gov. Wolf was right to veto House Bill 1327 and preserve Pennsylvania's progress toward compliance with the federal Clean Power Plan in the face of roadblocks put up by the state legislature for short-term political gain ("Wolf vetoes Pennsylvania's fiscal code," March 29). The bill would have empowered the House and Senate to block the state's compliance plan. Interfering with the development and submission of a plan could force the state to accept a federal plan.
April 5, 2016
Whether it was his intent or not, one consequence of Gov. Wolf's veto of legislation that details how state allocations must be spent could give him more leverage to get his next budget passed. Wolf last week let a $30 billion budget become law without his signature to end a nine-month stalemate with the Republican-led legislature. But he vetoed the accompanying fiscal code because its distribution of $200 million in new education funds shortchanges strapped school districts like Philadelphia's.
March 17, 2016 |
HARRISBURG - In yet another turn of the political carousel that is the still-unapproved state budget, Gov. Wolf said Wednesday that he would veto the latest spending plan passed by the Republican-controlled legislature. "Republican leaders are once again insistent on passing another irresponsible and unbalanced budget that does not fund our schools or fix the deficit," the Democratic governor said in a statement. "This is further indication that the Republican leaders have no intention of working together with me to produce a final budget.