New Jersey's 25th Legislative District

Senator Anthony M. Bucco

Senator Anthony M. Bucco

Bucco: Restaurant Closings Rest at Governor’s Feet

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The popular Market Taverne restaurant in Morristown is the latest causality due to New Jersey’s prohibition on indoor dining.

Financial pressures from the pandemic are forcing many restaurants to go out of business and Senator Bucco is calling on the Governor to help. (Pixabay)

The decision to shut this restaurant down forever leaves 30 employees without jobs, and became public only days after another popular restaurant in the town, La Campagna announced they were going out of business.

“This is real life, and the Governor is letting it happen,” said Senator Anthony M. Bucco, a tireless advocate for a more business-supportive approach from the Administration. “I’ve heard of seven restaurants that can’t hold on, and it’s only the tip of the iceberg. Businesses are dying, dreams are fading, jobs are being lost and the Governor has done little to help.”

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Senator Anthony M. Bucco

Bucco Bill Package Addresses Long Lines and Delays at Motor Vehicle Commission Locations

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As frustrations continue to mount with the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission’s inability to deal with the volume of motorists seeking services at agencies around the state, Senator Anthony M. Bucco has introduced a legislative package to provide a solution to the problems at the long-beleaguered agency.

Senator Bucco sponsors a package of legislation addressing inefficiencies and poor service at New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission. (SenateNJ.com)

“MVC’s performance during the pandemic has been abysmal, from top to bottom,” said Bucco. “The coronavirus simply exposed systemic shortcomings and inefficiencies that have plagued operations at the commission for far too long. Steps that should have been taken to improve services and productivity were ignored, and the added pressure of the state shutdown resulted in the mess we see there today.”

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Senator Anthony M. Bucco
Senator Joe Pennacchio
Senator Kristin Corrado

Bucco, Corrado & Pennacchio: Murphy’s Nursing Home, Unemployment & MVC Failures Must Be Probed by Senate

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Call for Democrats to Stop Delaying Formation of Special Investigative Committee

Senator Anthony M. Bucco, Senator Kristin Corrado, and Senator Joe Pennacchio said the Murphy Administration’s massive failures in protecting nursing homes, processing unemployment claims, and reopening Motor Vehicle Commission agencies must be investigated by the Legislature to ensure that fixes can be implemented as quickly as possible.

Senators Bucco, Corrado, and Pennacchio said the Murphy Administration’s massive failures in protecting nursing homes, processing unemployment claims, and reopening MVC agencies must be investigated by the Legislature to ensure that fixes can be implemented as quickly as possible. (SenateNJ.com)

“It’s clear to everyone in New Jersey that the Murphy Administration has failed to properly protect nursing home residents, help unemployed workers, or plan for the MVC’s reopening,” said Bucco (R-25). “What’s not clear, however, is why the governor didn’t listen to the warnings raised by so many people or why he continues to refuse to enact the common-sense solutions we’ve proposed. It’s also not clear why Senate Democrats continue to delay the bipartisan investigation we were promised to help guide our efforts to fix lingering problems and prevent a recurrence of these critical failures.”

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Senator Anthony M. Bucco

Bucco Bill Requires State to Pay for Police at Motor Vehicle Commission Facilities

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Long lines and unsafe traffic conditions at recently reopened Motor Vehicle Commission locations has been a burden on local police departments, and Senator Anthony M. Bucco wants to ensure the state picks up the tab for the increased expenses.

Long lines at the MVC location in Randolph and across New Jersey increased expenses for towns, and a bill introduced by Senator Bucco would ensure the state pays for it. (SenateNJ.com)

“It’s the right thing to do. The MVC is responsible to cover the costs for these issues,” said Bucco (R-25). “It’s their job to ensure things run smoothly, and when they drop the ball like they have done with the reopening of facilities, they can’t expect cash-strapped municipalities to take the hit.”

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Senator Anthony M. Bucco

Senate Approves Bucco Bill Establishing Overdose Awareness Day in New Jersey

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Statewide Initiative is Necessary to Combat Addiction and Save Lives

August 31 of each year will be designated Overdose Awareness Day in New Jersey under a bill sponsored by Senator Anthony M. Bucco and passed today by the Senate.

Senator Bucco’s resolution designating August 31 of each year as Overdose Awareness Day in New Jersey cleared the Senate. (www.overdoseday.com)

“Every day, the battle against substance abuse disorder and opioid-related death continues in this state and across the nation,” said Bucco (R-25). “Information can be empowering to those who often feel helpless against this deadly disease. Establishing this meaningful day will honor the lives of those lost to addiction for years to come and hopefully save many more from the grasp of drugs. Elected officials on both sides of the aisle must work together now more than ever to increase awareness and remove the stigma surrounding addiction.”

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Senator Anthony M. Bucco

Bucco Bill Allowing Retired State Workers to Return to the Job to Help Deal with the Coronavirus Crisis Advances

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Bipartisan legislation sponsored by Senator Anthony M. Bucco that would help meet increased demand for public employees during the COVID pandemic was approved by the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee today.

Senator Bucco’s bill providing for the temporary employment of former public workers to fill voids during the Public Health Emergency or State of Emergency cleared the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee. (Flickr)

The bill (S-2376) provides for the temporary employment of former public workers who retired from the Public Employees’ Retirement System, the Police and Fireman’s Retirement System or the State Police Retirement System during the Public Health Emergency or State of Emergency.

“This is a sensible approach to providing crucial services during the crisis,” said Bucco (R-25). “We can utilize the abilities of recent retirees who are thoroughly trained, experienced, tested and ready to help. The state is facing unprecedented challenges due to the virus, and the usual rules and regulations don’t always work to the public’s advantage. We need to adapt.”

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Senator Anthony M. Bucco

Bucco: Administration Insiders Say Murphy’s COVID Decisions Not Data Driven

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Senator Anthony M. Bucco reiterated his concerns that a host of COVID-19 responses ordered by the administration of Governor Phil Murphy have not been driven by data as the governor has repeatedly claimed.

Sen. Tony Bucco reiterated his concerns that a host of COVID-19 responses ordered by Gov, Phil Murphy have not been driven by data as the governor has repeatedly claimed. (©iStock)

“We’ve all heard the governor repeat his refrain that ‘data determines dates,’ but we have a pile of mounting evidence to the contrary,” said Bucco (R-25). “Health experts in the administration who have the data that should be guiding the State’s COVID-19 response efforts have said they were never consulted before announcements were made by Governor Murphy. To the contrary, those career public health officials were only asked to help justify the governor’s completely arbitrary decisions after those decisions had already been made. It’s absolutely unbelievable.”

Those concerns were highlighted in an article published today by The Record, “Are Murphy’s NJ reopening decisions data-driven? Health experts say they’re being ignored.”

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Senator Anthony M. Bucco

Bucco: Murphy Needs to Dedicate CARES Act Relief Funds to Morris County

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Says Governor Needs to Stop Playing Favorites with Coronavirus Response

Senator Anthony M. Bucco said a new commercial rental assistance program announced yesterday using CARES Act money wouldn’t help Morris County, showing that Governor Phil Murphy continues to play favorites through his coronavirus response.

Sen. Tony Bucco said a new commercial rental assistance program announced yesterday using CARES Act money wouldn’t help Morris County, showing that Gov. Phil Murphy continues to play favorites through his coronavirus response. (Pixabay)

“Once again, the hardworking, taxpaying residents of Morris County have been overlooked by Governor Murphy in their time of need,” said Bucco. “We have suffered just as much as anyone in New Jersey during this public health emergency, yet we’ve gotten none of the support we need through the $2.4 billion of federal CARES Act money that was provided to the State of New Jersey to help all of its residents.”

A $6 million commercial rental assistance program announced by the governor yesterday will only be available to support businesses in 64 municipalities that are covered by the New Jersey Redevelopment Authority, none of which are in Morris County.

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Senator Anthony M. Bucco

Bucco: Restaurants Will Close Permanently Without Some Reopening of Indoor Dining or Direct State Support

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Senator Anthony M. Bucco warned that restaurants across New Jersey that have suffered steep economic losses since March will soon go out of business permanently if they are not allowed to reopen their dining rooms or provided direct financial support from the State’s share of billions in unspent CARES Act funding.

Sen. Anthony Bucco warned that restaurants across New Jersey that have suffered steep economic losses since March will soon go out of business permanently if they are not allowed to reopen their dining rooms or provided direct financial support from the State’s share of billions in unspent CARES Act funding. (SenateNJ.com)

“Four months after Governor Murphy ordered New Jersey restaurants to close their doors, many are on the verge of going out of business permanently, if they haven’t already,” said Bucco (R-25). “Limited outdoor dining and pick-up and delivery orders have only replaced a fraction of the revenues that many local eateries were generating before the crisis. Unless the governor allows restaurants to resume some measure of indoor dining immediately or provides direct financial relief, many will close forever. That would be a tremendous and unnecessary loss to communities across New Jersey.”

Bucco noted that New Jersey received nearly $2.4 billion in CARES Act money from the federal government in March to support the needs of small businesses, non-profits, and local governments impacted by COVID-19. More than $2.1 billion of those federal funds remains unspent.

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Senator Anthony M. Bucco

Bucco Bill to Create Overdose Awareness Day in New Jersey Advances

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Calls for Statewide Initiative to Combat Addiction and Fatal Overdoses

Amid a devastating spike in drug overdose deaths during the pandemic, Senator Anthony M. Bucco’s legislation to establish an annual Overdose Awareness Day in New Jersey cleared the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee today.

Senator Bucco’s legislation to create Overdose Awareness Day in New Jersey was advanced by the Senate health committee today. (OverdoseDay.com)

Under Bucco’s bill, SJR-85, August 31 of each year would be designated to raise awareness of overdose and reduce the stigma of drug-related death.

“Far too many lives have been lost in communities across the State due to addiction and overdose,” said Bucco (R-25). “The COVID outbreak has triggered a 20 percent increase in overdose fatalities. I am advocating for this somber annual reminder on a local, county and state level because public awareness of the risks and extent of the problem is necessary for us to control the threat to families of every demographic. Information can be empowering to those who often feel helpless against this deadly threat.”

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