Weekly Advance: Week of Jan. 6

TRENTON – The legislators return next week with a packed schedule, including voting sessions and committee hearings touching on a variety of contentious topics.

The Assembly convenes for a full voting session that will include the resolution opposing the Civil Service banding concept. 

Its supporters claim it will cut costs and reduce red tape.  Its detractors say it will grease the skids for cronyism by “banding’’ or grouping together dissimilar job descriptions.

 

However, the Assembly’s main event will be on Thursday when the Transportation Committee is expected to hear from subpoenaed ex-Port Authority of New York and New Jersey official David Wildstein.

The N.J. political appointee, a former PolitickerNJ editor, resigned as did his boss, former Sen. Bill Baroni, over the flap regarding lane closures in September at Fort Lee, the host town for the George Washington Bridge.

Although during previous hearings before Assemblyman John Wisniewski’s panel, officials, including Baroni, talked of the necessity to study traffic and why Fort Lee has dedicated lanes at the expense of other motorists, the top N.Y. Port Authority official, Patrick Foye, was blunt: There was no traffic study.

Wisniewski subpoenaed documents from numerous officials, including Wildstein, and then subpoenaed the man himself.

And although Gov. Chris Christie tried in the past to dismiss this entire situation it is clear it will not go away anytime soon. 

 

A day earlier, on Wednesday, the Assembly Housing and Local Government Committee will conduct a hearing into how the state is handling federal funds for Superstorm Sandy recovery.

Lawmakers held four hearings last year into the post-Sandy landscape, and heard numerous stories of those left behind by the bureaucracy.

On a related note, Speaker Sheila Oliver may introduce a bill requiring oversight reports regarding Sandy recovery funds. The bill might come up at Thursday’s Budget Committee hearing.

 

Another possible bill on tap at the Assembly Budget hearing will be one sponsored by Majority Leader Lou Greenwald that would authorize Rowan University to enter into public-private partnerships.

 

Although the Assembly has a packed schedule, the Senate will not be idle, either.

A full voting session is slated for Thursday along with committee hearings on Monday and Thursday. The Rowan public-private partnership bill, sponsored in the upper chamber by Senate President Steve Sweeney, will be dealt with in the Senate Budget Committee on Monday.

 

In the Economic Growth Committee, bills designed to protect beekeepers from nuisance laws and afford them Right To Farm status will be heard.

Also on tap is a bill that would prevent those guilty of animal cruelty from working at animal-related businesses. The bill, which has passed in the Assembly, would have a court determine a period of time during which the person could not own a pet.

 

Monday

Gov. Chris Christie

Not yet scheduled

Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno

Not yet scheduled

Legislature

Senate

10 a.m., Budget and Appropriations Committee, Rm. 4, Statehouse Annex, Trenton

Assembly

1 p.m., Voting session, Assembly chambers, Statehouse, Trenton

Boards and Commissions

10 a.m., Delaware River Port Authority, One Port Center, 2 Riverside Drive, Camden

 

Tuesday

Gov. Chris Christie

Not yet scheduled

Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno

Not yet scheduled

Legislature

Nothing scheduled

Boards and Commissions

6 p.m., Delaware Bay Shellfisheries Council, Haskin Shellfish Research Lab, 6959 Miller Ave., Port Norris

 

Wednesday

Gov. Chris Christie

Not yet scheduled

Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno

Not yet scheduled

Legislature

Assembly

2 p.m., Housing and Local Government Committee, Rm. 11, Statehouse Annex, Trenton

Boards and Commissions

9:30 a.m., Clean Air Council, 200 Princeton South Corporate Center, Suite 160, Ewing

 

Thursday

Gov. Chris Christie

Not yet scheduled

Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno

Not yet scheduled

Legislature

Senate

10:30 a.m., Economic Growth Committee, Rm. 1, Statehouse Annex, Trenton

11 a.m., Judiciary Committee, Rm. 4, Statehouse Annex, Trenton

11:30 a.m., State Government, Wagering, Tourism, and Historic Preservation Committee, Rm. 7, Statehouse Annex, Trenton

2 p.m., Voting session, Senate chambers, Statehouse, Trenton

Assembly

10 a.m., Budget Committee, Rm. 11, Statehouse Annex, Trenton

10 a.m., Telecommunications and Utilities Committee, Rm. 9, Statehouse Annex, Trenton

12 p.m., Transportation, Public Works and Independent Authorities Committee, Rm. TBD, Statehouse Annex, Trenton

Boards and Commissions

10 a.m., Environmental Infrastructure Trust, 3131 Princeton Pike, Office Building 6, Suite 201, Lawrence

4 p.m., Marine Fisheries Council, Galloway Township branch of Atlantic County Library, 306 E. Jimmie Leed Road, Galloway

 

Friday

Gov. Chris Christie

Not yet scheduled

Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno

Not yet scheduled

Legislature

Nothing scheduled

Boards and Commissions

9:30 a.m., Pinelands Commission, 15 Springfield Road, New Lisbon

 

 

 

 

Weekly Advance: Week of Jan. 6