New Jersey's 23rd Legislative District

Senator Michael Doherty

  • Sen. Mike Doherty (R-23) speaking at a New Jersey State House press conference on S-2026, the “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” on December 5, 2016. (Full Story)

  • Sen. Mike Doherty (right) and Asm. John DiMaio (left) at the dedication of the new Phillipsburg High School on September 21, 2016. (Full Story)

  • Sen. Michael Doherty participated in a ceremony naming a portion of Route 173 as the “173rd Airborne Brigade Highway” on August 14, 2016. (Full Story)

  • Sen. Mike Doherty at a roadside rally in Bridgewater on June 22, 2016 opposing a gas tax increase with Assemblyman John DiMaio, Assemblyman Erik Peterson, Americans for Prosperity-New Jersey, and concerned residents. (Facebook)

  • Sen. Jennifer Beck and Sen. Mike Doherty held a press conference to oppose a gas tax increase proposal at the New Jersey State House on June 15, 2016. (Full Story)

  • Sen. Jennifer Beck and Sen. Michael Doherty presented transportation and pension system alternatives to Democrats’ gas tax and income tax hike proposals at a State House press conference on Dec. 14, 2015. (Full Story)

  • Senator Mike Doherty (R-23) spoke and voted against legislation (A-2006) to reduce the size of magazines to 10 rounds, saying the limit would not be an impediment to criminals who would do harm to others, and may put law abiding citizens trying to protect themselves in danger. (Facebook)

  • Senator Jennifer Beck (left), Senator Mike Doherty (right) and members of the New Jersey Senate take the oath of office at the beginning of the 2014-2015 legislative session on January 14, 2014. (Facebook)

  • Senator Mike Doherty (R-23) helped honor 36 war era veterans at the Warren County War Memorial in Belvidere on October 5, 2013. Doherty is pictured with Leo Becker and Jack Trimmer of the Warren County War Memorial Corporation.

  • Senator Michael Doherty (R-23) joined state and federal officials and more than 2,000 members of the state’s Indian-American community to welcome one of India’s most renowned spritiual leaders, His Holiness Brahmrishi Shri Kumar Swami Ji, to New Jersey at a reception in Somerset on September 29, 2013. Click for full post.

Senator Gerald Cardinale
Senator Mike Doherty

Cardinale & Doherty Introduce Constitutional Amendment Abolishing Tenure for NJ Supreme Court Justices

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Call for Public Retention Elections for Justices to Serve Additional Terms

Senator Gerald Cardinale (R-39) and Senator Michael Doherty (R-23) have introduced a constitutional amendment (SCR-152) that would abolish tenure for New Jersey Supreme Court justices and provide an opportunity for the public to decide via regular retention elections whether a justice may continue serving on the State’s highest court.

Sens. Gerry Cardinale and Mike Doherty have introduced a constitutional amendment that would abolish tenure for New Jersey Supreme Court justices and establish retention elections for justices to serve additional terms on the State’s highest court. (©iStock)

“Our current tenure system for New Jersey Supreme Court justices has repeatedly failed the state and its residents,” said Cardinale. “With only a single opportunity to review a justice’s record upon reappointment, we have little ability to hold members of the New Jersey Supreme Court accountable for their activism. As a result, we’ve had a long history of horrendous Supreme Court decisions that have made New Jersey the most expensive state in the country for property taxpayers.”

Doherty pointed to decisions including Robinson v. Cahill, Abbott v. Burke, and Mount Laurel I and II as examples of unelected, activist justices legislating from the bench.

“The New Jersey Supreme Court has imposed expensive affordable housing and school funding mandates that have cost property taxpayers tens of billions of dollars,” said Doherty. “It’s time that the people of New Jersey get a direct vote on the justices who have mandated the overdevelopment of our towns and locked the state into an outrageously expensive school funding ideology.”

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Senator Kip Bateman
Senator Mike Doherty

Lesniak, Doherty, & Bateman: Christie Admin Reveals in Court Meeting on Lawsuit that State House Renovation Bonds Have Already Been Sold

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Say Quick Bond Sale Highlights Administration’s Effort to Avoid Transparency & Accountability

Senators Ray Lesniak (D-20), Mike Doherty (R-23), and Kip Bateman (R-16) blasted a revelation made by the Christie Administration in court today that bonds to finance a $300 million State House renovation were sold on May 11th, the same day the financing plan was approved by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA).

Sens. Lesniak, Doherty, and Bateman blasted a revelation made by the Christie Administration in court that bonds to finance a $300 million State House renovation were sold on May 11th, the same day the financing plan was approved by the NJEDA. (SenateNJ.com)

Senator Lesniak called it a calculated effort by Governor Christie and the NJEDA to avoid public scrutiny, “This is a shameful act by both Governor Christie and the NJEDA Commissioners. Apparently they have no shame.”

“In an effort to avoid transparency and accountability, the governor must have set a new record for the speed with which bonds were sold after the NJEDA rubber stamped his expensive renovation plan,” said Doherty. “This is a clear sign that the Christie Administration didn’t want to give legislators or the public even a moment to review or challenge this expensive State House renovation.”

News of the bond sale was revealed by the defense team representing the Christie Administration during a scheduling meeting in New Jersey Superior Court with Judge Mary Jacobson to discuss the lawsuit filed this week by Lesniak, Doherty, and Bateman that seeks to halt the project.

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Senator Kip Bateman
Senator Mike Doherty

Bateman & Doherty Join Lawsuit to Stop $300 Million State House Renovation Project

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Cost to New Jersey Taxpayers Could Reach $750 Million without Legislative or Voter Approval

Senator Kip Bateman (R-16) and Senator Michael Doherty (R-23) joined with Senator Ray Lesniak (D-20) to file a lawsuit today to stop an expensive New Jersey State House renovation project that was initiated without legislative or voter approval.

Sen. Kip Bateman and Sen. Mike Doherty joined on the filing of a lawsuit today to stop an expensive New Jersey State House renovation project that could cost state taxpayers as much as $750 million without legislative or voter approval. (Wikimedia Commons)

The civil complaint filed in New Jersey Superior Court alleges that actions undertaken by the State Capitol Joint Management Commission, Treasury Department, and New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) related to the renovation plan violate the Debt Limitation, Appropriations and Separation of Powers clauses of the New Jersey Constitution.

“While the law is clear that the plan to borrow $300 million to fund the State House renovation must be approved by both voters and the Legislature, the governor’s convoluted and unconstitutional financing arrangement takes that choice away from both taxpayers and their elected representatives,” said Doherty. “Our lawsuit seeks to hold the governor accountable and halt this boondoggle of a project. We’re fighting to ensure that New Jersey taxpayers have both transparency and choice as to how their money is spent.”

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Senator Mike Doherty

Doherty: Bedminster Taxpayers Will Be Reimbursed for Trump’s Visits to Golf Club

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Senator Michael Doherty (R-Somerset, Warren, Hunterdon) today reaffirmed his support for a provision within the spending bill passed by Congress earlier this week that would allow Bedminster to seek reimbursements for costs associated with protecting President Donald Trump when he visits his golf club within the municipality.

Sen. Mike Doherty reaffirmed his support for Bedminster’s efforts to seek reimbursement for costs associated with protecting President Trump. He added that commonsense would indicate that he would never state otherwise. (SenateNJ)

“As I told Star-Ledger reporter Claude Brodesser-Akner on the phone yesterday, I strongly support Bedminster’s efforts to seek reimbursement for these security costs,” Senator Doherty said. “Families in Bedminster and across New Jersey already pay the highest property taxes in the nation. It is completely unjust to ask them to pay millions of dollars in added costs that should be covered by the administration.

“I want to make it clear to my constituents and their local leaders that I strongly believe that the people of Bedminster, or any community for that matter, deserve to be reimbursed for the substantial cost of protecting President Trump when he comes into town. Thankfully, as I very specifically informed this reporter yesterday, this is no longer an issue. Congressman Lance put a resolution in the budget to eliminate this taxpayer burden.”

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Senator Jennifer Beck
Senator Joe Kyrillos
Senator Mike Doherty

Beck, Kyrillos & Doherty Fight to Reform $1.9 Billion Property Tax Liability

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Senators Jennifer Beck (R-11), Michael Doherty (R-23) and Joe Kyrillos (R-13) sent letters today inviting Senate President Stephen Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto to join their effort to achieve vacation and sick leave reform.

Senators Jennifer Beck, Mike Doherty and Joe Kyrillos invited Senate President Stephen Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto to join their effort to achieve vacation and sick leave reform. (SenateNJ.com)

Their invitation follows the publication of a story by NJ Spotlight today putting the total accumulated liability of towns, counties, and school districts for unused sick and vacation time at nearly $1.9 billion.

In the letter, the senators note that New Jersey residents pay the highest property taxes in the nation, and highlight the bipartisan effort to enact the two-percent cap in 2010.

“When few people thought it was possible, Republicans and Democrats in both houses of the Legislature came together to pass the property tax cap,” said Doherty. “That was a good demonstration of what’s possible, but much more remains to be done. Ending the sick and vacation leave payout abuses that contribute to our state’s property tax crisis should be low-hanging fruit that we can accomplish together if given the opportunity.”

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Senator Joe Pennacchio
Senator Mike Doherty
Senator Sam Thompson
Senator Steve Oroho
Senator Tom Kean

Senate Republicans Propose School Funding Reforms to Improve Opportunities for Students, Provide Property Tax Relief for Families

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Proposals Eliminate Abuses, Establish More Equitable Funding for Overlooked Students in Underfunded Districts

In an effort to improve educational opportunities for New Jersey students and provide real property tax relief to overburdened families, New Jersey Senate Republicans released a series of school funding reform proposals as the starting point for discussions on the replacement of the state’s failed school funding system.

New Jersey Senate Republicans released a series of school funding reform proposals as the starting point for discussions on the replacement of the state’s failed school funding system. (©iStock)

“Senate Republicans want to fix the broken school funding formula that has failed too many students and devastated middle-class property taxpayers,” said Kean. “We’re ready to roll up our sleeves to negotiate a funding formula that works, and we’re prepared to come to the table with detailed solutions that we believe will improve educational opportunities statewide and make New Jersey more affordable.”

During his Budget Message last month, Governor Christie challenged the legislative leaders of both parties to join with him to work on a new funding formula to replace the School Funding Reform Act of 2008 (SFRA).

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Senator Jennifer Beck
Senator Joe Kyrillos
Senator Mike Doherty

Beck, Doherty, Kyrillos Condemn Democrats for Repeated Efforts to Block Sick Leave Reform

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Senate Republicans Jennifer Beck, Mike Doherty and Joe Kyrillos condemned the repeated efforts by Legislative Democrats to block Senate and Assembly Republican attempts to move bills limiting local sick leave payouts to protect property taxpayers.

Sens. Jennifer Beck, Mike Doherty, Joe Kyrillos condemned Legislative Democrats for continuing to block Senate and Assembly Republican efforts to pass sick leave reform. (SenateNJ.com)

An effort by Assemblywoman Nancy Munoz to move legislation (A-653) addressing six-figure sick leave payouts that some local government employees receive when they retire was blocked by Assembly Democrats during the March 16, 2017 Assembly voting session.

Senate Republicans Jennifer Beck, Mike Doherty and Joe Kyrillos also attempted to force a vote on their sick leave reform bills during the most recent Senate session on March 13. Senate Democrats blocked each of those efforts.

“It doesn’t make any sense to repeatedly block attempts to achieve sick leave reform, when both Democrats and Republicans sponsor legislation to do just that,” Senator Beck (R-Monmouth) said. “I am disappointed to see the majority party pass up another opportunity to provide property tax relief to our residents, by eliminating this billion-dollar expense hanging over their heads.”

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Senator Jennifer Beck
Senator Joe Kyrillos
Senator Mike Doherty

Senate Democrats Block Three Attempts by Kyrillos, Doherty & Beck to Move Bills Limiting Local Sick Leave Payouts to Protect Property Taxpayers

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Measures Would Stop Six-Figure Payouts for Unused Sick Time to Retiring Local Government Employees

Three separate efforts by Senate Republicans to protect property taxpayers by moving bills they sponsor addressing the absurd six-figure sick leave payouts that some local government employees receive when they retire were blocked by Senate Democrats during today’s session of the New Jersey Senate.

Senate Democrats tabled an effort to bring S-194 up for a vote. (SenateNJ.com)

Motions were made by Senator Joe Kyrillos (R-13) on S-194, Senator Mike Doherty (R-23) on S-572, and Senator Jennifer Beck (R-11) on S-2140 to bring the bills to the floor of the Senate for consideration. Senate Democrats blocked each of those efforts.

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Senator Mike Doherty

Editorial: Pay Equity Debate Is About Remedies, Not Merits

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The following editorial by Senator Mike Doherty (R-23) on the legislative debate on pay equity legislation was published by NJ.com on January 27, 2017:

In this NJ.com editorial, Sen. Mike Doherty explains that the legislative debate over S-992 is not on the merits of pay equity, but on what constitutes a reasonable remedy to address instances of discrimination and deter future violations. (Flickr)

Everyone agrees that women deserve equal pay for equal work. Thankfully, both state and federal law already prohibit wage discrimination on the basis of an employee’s gender, as they rightly should.

Those prohibitions are explicit in the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Equal Pay Act of 1963, as well as in New Jersey’s Law Against Discrimination.

Further, the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act signed by former President Barack Obama in 2009 set the modern standard for how to address pay inequities experienced by women.

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Senator Mike Doherty
Senator Sam Thompson
Senator Steve Oroho

Oroho/Doherty/Thompson Statement on First School Funding Hearing

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Senate Republicans Steven Oroho, Mike Doherty and Sam Thompson issued the following statement on the first meeting of the Senate Select Committee on School Funding Fairness. As committee members, the senators are working on a bipartisan basis to examine the state’s broken school funding system – a major component of New Jersey’s property tax crisis.

As members of the Senate Select Committee on School Funding Fairness, Sens. Steven Oroho, Mike Doherty and Sam Thompson will work on a bipartisan basis to fix New Jersey’s broken school funding system. (©iStock)

“This committee to examine school funding reform was created on a bipartisan basis, and I am encouraged by the fact that we seem to share a common goal,” Senator Doherty (R-Warren, Hunterdon, Somerset) said. I’ve had a constitutional amendment in since 2011 to make school funding as equitable as possible. I’ve been in this fight to restore fairness to school funding and provide property tax relief to residents for years. Our taxpayers and our children deserve no less.”

“Our flawed school funding formula creates inequities that hurt students and taxpayers alike,” Senator Steven Oroho (R–Sussex, Warren, Morris) said. “I am hopeful that this committee will not limit itself to making slight adjustments to the current formula or just look to throw more money at the problem when we already spend near the top nationally in state aid per pupil. We simply cannot address high property taxes without enacting more comprehensive school funding reform.”

“Finding solutions to fix New Jersey’s inequitable school aid formula is critical to easing the property tax burden for our residents, especially those who reside in one of the many woefully underfunded school districts in suburban and rural communities throughout the state,” Senator Thompson (R-Middlesex, Mercer, Monmouth, Ocean, Burlington) said. “I am committed to working diligently with my fellow committee members to finally deliver long-awaited and much needed school funding reform.”

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Michael Doherty

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