Bateman/Ciattarelli Editorial: Court Ruling on N.J. Affordable Housing Would Cause Staggering Changes
Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman and Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli (both R-16) said affordable housing reform is needed to protect taxpayers from a court ruling that could have severe consequences for towns statewide in this editorial published in the Star-Ledger on June 6, 2016:
The New Jersey Superior Court Appellate Division will soon hear arguments to determine if municipalities must build tens of thousands of affordable housing units that they were not required to construct during the Council On Affordable Housing’s “gap period” of 1999 to 2015.
If the court ignores current rules and law by mandating retroactive affordable housing obligations, municipalities statewide would be forced to build more than 100,000 new housing units by 2025.
This is truly a case that could forever change the character of many New Jersey communities.
Take rural Branchburg, for example, which could be forced to increase the number of residential units in the township by 60 percent. It should be clear that the consequences of such a ruling would be staggering.
The New Jersey Senate today passed legislation sponsored by Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman (R-Somerset, Mercer, Middlesex, Hunterdon) to permit counties to study replacing traditional paper poll books with electronic poll books during the 2017 election cycle.
“With high-profile elections fast approaching, it is critical that we do everything we can to prevent voter fraud,” Senator Bateman said. “We have all seen news coverage of long lines wrapping around polling stations across the country. In 2017, locations using paper records could struggle to keep up with a higher voter turnout, increasing the risk of fraud. Dozens of states use electronic poll books, often leading to shorter wait times and a reduction in voter fraud. It’s time for New Jersey to join the fold. With today’s Senate passage, we are one step closer to giving voters a faster, more efficient way to do their civic duty.”
Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman and Assemblyman Reed Gusciora announced a new effort to combat the Institute of Advanced Study’s plans to construct housing on top of Maxwell Field, a National Historic Landmark and the site of George Washington’s 1777 victory against the British.
On Thursday, Senator Bateman and Assemblyman Gusciora will transmit a letter to the Institute renewing their request to discuss solutions to preserve Princeton Battlegrounds and enable IAS to build housing elsewhere. IAS has repeatedly rejected the legislators’ request for a meeting, prompting Bateman and Gusciora to go public with this week’s submission.
“The refusal to even grant a meeting proves that the Institute is determined to bury their head in the sand and continue to deny the irreparable impact this construction will have on the Princeton Battlegrounds and its irreplaceable historic resources,” Senator Bateman (R-Mercer, Somerset, Hunterdon, Middlesex) said. “Assemblyman Gusciora and I are ready and willing to discuss reasonable alternatives, but we will not stand in the shadows and allow the Institute to move blindly forward with these destructive plans. To do so would be a disservice to the residents, historians and activists who are fighting day and night to protect this hallowed ground.”
The Senate State Government, Wagering, Tourism & Historic Preservation Committee passed a bill sponsored by Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman (R-Mercer, Somerset, Middlesex, Hunterdon) that commemorates the 50th anniversary of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966.
“Thanks to this act, we’ve had a chance to preserve countless structures, districts and other properties with historical significance so future generations can enjoy and learn from them,” Senator Bateman said. “The 50th anniversary of the act gives us a chance to celebrate its success, as well as refocus our efforts to continue our fight to protect more of our historically important places.”
Legislation sponsored by Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman requiring school nurses to meet additional training, clinical experience and education requirements has cleared the Senate Education Committee.
“A school nurse’s responsibilities extend far beyond placing a Band-Aid on a scraped knee,” Senator Bateman (R-16) said. “For a child living below the poverty line, a school nurse may be the only health professional they see. They are truly on the front lines of protecting a child’s health and welfare. Increasing training and clinical experience requirements will ensure all school nurses are fully equipped to identify the early signs of serious health problems and provide the highest level of care for kids with diverse and complex needs.”
Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman (R-16) is joining with U.S. Rep. Leonard Lance (R-7th District) and the other members of New Jersey’s Congressional delegation to urge the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to take steps to reduce the outrageously long wait times at Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR).
“Newark Airport is a crucial hub for transportation not just for New Jersey but for our entire region. Long waits and delays are far too common at the airport and are completely unacceptable.
Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman and Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli have, along with a number of Democrats, introduced a bill clarifying municipalities cannot be forced to meet retroactive affordable housing requirements, specifically because the Fair Housing Act does not impose such requirements.
The bipartisan bill was drafted in the wake of a court ruling that could set a dangerous precedent requiring towns statewide to include tens of thousands of more affordable housing units than they are obligated to provide under the Fair Housing Act.
“Municipalities need a clear set of guidelines for providing affordable housing,” Senator Bateman (R-16) said. “Instead, one court has handed down a misguided mandate that clearly violates established law. Far too many New Jerseyans are still struggling to find adequate housing. Municipalities are scrambling to understand and meet their housing obligations. It’s time to stop playing games in the courts and focus on enacting real, comprehensive affordable housing reform.”
The New Jersey Senate has passed legislation sponsored by Senator Anthony Bucco (R-25) and Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman (R-16) to mandate ethics training for all elected officials. Government officials who fail to complete the training would face a $5,000 fine.
“Unfortunately, you don’t have to dig deep to find examples of political corruption in New Jersey,” Senator Bucco said. “Widely publicized investigations into kickback schemes and recent exploitation of state funds have exposed a critical need for the ethics training mandated under my bill,” Senator Bucco said. “New Jerseyans are already coping with a nation-high tax burden. We cannot allow elected leaders to squander a single public dollar for political gain.”
Legislation sponsored by Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman (R-16) to permit counties to conduct a study replacing traditional paper polling records with electronic poll books during the 2017 election cycle has cleared the Senate State Government Committee.
“This commonsense move to modernize New Jersey’s voting system will give voters a faster, more efficient way to do their civic duty,” Senator Bateman said. “Most importantly, electronic poll books limit voter fraud by signaling an electronic notification of a registered voter’s mail-in ballot and Election Day voting record. With a number of high-profile elections fast approaching, it is critical that we do everything we can to prevent this crime.”
Senator Christopher “Kip” Bateman today announced his plans to introduce a budget resolution to add Governor Christie’s proposed $10 million to the Fiscal Year 2017 budget to support the statewide testing of school drinking water for lead contamination.
“I applaud Governor Christie for joining our bipartisan effort to safeguard all New Jersey children from the devastating effects of lead poisoning,” Senator Bateman said. “Adding funds to the FY17 budget to support testing school drinking water for lead exposure is a no-brainer. As elected officials we have a responsibility to develop a swift and responsible solution to solve this critical public health and safety crisis. I will continue to work with my colleagues in the Senate to achieve this goal.”