Senator Michael Doherty (R-23) said that Jersey City’s reported plan to sue the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey over what Mayor Steven Fulop has called “unfair and outdated tax agreements” is just the latest hypocrisy from the city when it comes to property taxes.
“Jersey City wants everyone other than its own residents to pay the city’s bills,” said Doherty. “Mayor Fulop claims long-standing tax agreements with the Port Authority have caused a ‘severe negative impact on Jersey City taxpayers,’ yet he makes no mention of the $2 billion of questionable tax exemptions that the city has doled out which shifts the burden of maintaining city services to other Hudson County and state taxpayers.”
A report issued by the Office of the State Comptroller in 2010, “A Programmatic Examination of Municipal Tax Abatements,” notes (page 12) that the use of tax abatements results in Jersey City “not collecting approximately $120 million in property taxes on exempted property.”
Seeks to Limit Water Levels in Upstream NYC Reservoirs to Protect Downstream Lives, Property & Infrastructure
Senator Michael Doherty (R-23) has voiced his support for an effort by the Warren County Board of Chosen Freeholders to prevent Delaware River flooding by reducing the maximum permitted capacity of upstream New York City reservoirs from 105% to 90% of capacity.
“Flooding along much of the Delaware River has become a regular occurrence when heavy rains hit the region, but it doesn’t have to be that way,” said Doherty. “We should revisit current rules that are meant to protect New York City from drought, but instead relegate the Delaware River Basin in New Jersey and Pennsylvania to recurrent and unnecessary flooding.”
Doherty: Same-Sex Marriage Should Have Been Approved Through Legislative Act or Constitutional Amendment, Not Judicial Decree
Senator Michael Doherty (R-23) responded to reports today that Governor Christie will drop the state’s appeal of a ruling by the New Jersey Supreme Court allowing same-sex marriages in New Jersey.
“As a member of the Legislature, I am disappointed that same-sex marriage is apparently now the law of New Jersey despite neither the enactment of legislation nor a vote of the people to amend our state constitution.”
Sen. Doherty Joins State’s Indian-American Community in Welcoming His Holiness Brahmrishi Shri Kumar Swami Ji to NJ
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.
Doherty presented a resolution on behalf of the New Jersey Senate to Brahmrishi Kumar Swami honoring him as an Ambassador of Peace at a reception on September 29th at the Garden State Exhibit Center in Somerset.
“It was an honor to welcome His Holiness Brahmrishi Shri Kumar Swami Ji back to New Jersey,” said Doherty. “His unwavering dedication to helping people and building communities serves as an inspiration to all.”
Senator Mike Doherty (R-Hunterdon, Somerset, Warren) called on Senator Barbara Buono and other state Democrats to focus on the real issue behind the condition of Trenton High School: budget and building managers.
“Rather than trying to use Trenton High School in a baseless crusade against Gov. Christie, Senator Buono and others should work toward solving the problem with that school’s physical condition,” Doherty said. “The Trenton school district gets more than enough state tax dollars each year from residents across New Jersey to maintain its buildings and grounds.”
Senator Doherty noted that according to the state Department of Education, the Trenton City school district is getting more aid this year than the total for all of the school districts in Bergen County combined.
Senator Michael Doherty (R-23) served as an Honorary Chair of the American Kennel Club’s Meet the Breeds dog and cat show that was held on September 28th and 29th at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in Manhattan.
“As someone who cares about animals, I was glad to serve as an Honorary Chair of Meet the Breeds,” said Doherty. “This educational event gave prospective owners the opportunity to interact with and learn about more than 200 different breeds of dogs and cats.”
Beck, Doherty Urge Senate Democrats to Act on Comptroller Report, Hold Rutgers University to Standard Public Bidding Laws
Following a report released today by the State Comptroller on Rutgers University’s contracting procedures, Senators Jennifer Beck (R- Monmouth) and Michael J. Doherty (R- Hunterdon, Somerset, Warren) urged action on legislation subjecting Rutgers to the same open public bidding and contracting procedures required of all other state colleges and universities.
In 2011, Senators Beck and Doherty introduced legislation to hold Rutgers to standard open public bidding and contracting procedures per the recommendation of an initial audit of the university’s contracting procedures by the State Comptroller. A follow-up report released by the State Comptroller today found some of the agency’s initial 18 recommendations had been followed but other common-sense measures like the Beck/Doherty legislation (S605) had not been enacted. Senate Democrats have failed to schedule a committee hearing for the Beck/Doherty bill.
Doherty: New State Comptroller Report on Widespread School Lunch Program Fraud Reinforces Need for School Funding Reform
Senator Michael Doherty (R-23) said that a new report issued by the Office of the State Comptroller detailing widespread fraud in the state’s free school lunch program reinforces the need to reform the state’s flawed school funding formula.
The investigation conducted by Comptroller Matthew Boxer looked into the free school lunch programs in 15 school districts, resulting in the referral of more than 100 individuals to the Division of Criminal Justice for prosecution.
“Since the initial reports of fraud in Elizabeth were released two years ago, I have repeatedly called for a larger scale investigation to uncover the extent of school lunch program fraud in New Jersey,” said Doherty. “It seemed likely that the abuses found in Elizabeth were occurring all over the place, which the Comptroller’s new report confirms.”
Homeowners Who Refuse to Sign Easements to Protect Views Shouldn’t Be Allowed to Keep Their Communities at Risk
Senator Michael Doherty (R-23) said that Governor Chris Christie is right to push for the construction of a protective dune system along the entirety of the Jersey Shore, despite the protests of some oceanfront homeowners who would rather keep entire communities at risk of future devastation to protect their water views from the lowest levels of their homes.
“Hurricane Sandy destroyed entire communities as its storm surge washed away or severely damaged hundreds of thousands of homes in communities along unprotected shorelines,” said Doherty. “Having just seen the massive scope of that devastation, it’s absolutely unbelievable that some selfish oceanfront homeowners would rather preserve their first floor views than allow us to build a protective dune system that would prevent this from happening again.”
Doherty: New Charges in Elizabeth Free School Lunch Scandal Reinforce Need for School Funding Reform
Senator Michael Doherty (R-23) said that new charges announced by the state Attorney General related to corruption and fraud in the Elizabeth school district’s free school lunch program are a reminder that New Jersey’s convoluted school funding formula needs to be reformed to prevent future abuse.
“The newest criminal charges announced by Attorney General Chiesa in Elizabeth are further confirmation that massive fraud exists in the free school lunch program,” said Doherty. “I want to congratulate the Attorney General for his persistence in bringing all of those who are complicit in this fraud to justice.”
Doherty noted that fraudulent enrollment in the school lunch program triggers other expenses that are even greater than the cost of the meals provided to students.