TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Today, Governor Phil Murphy signed A5405, which will direct $10 million from the Coronavirus Relief Fund established under the Federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to the New Jersey Department of Agriculture. This funding will be distributed to seven New Jersey food banks in order to continue providing families with food assistance during the pandemic.
“Our food banks have been a critical resource for thousands of families impacted by the pandemic,” said Governor Murphy. “Today’s necessary funding will help organizations to continue supporting New Jerseyans to put food on the table for their families. I want to thank our Congressional Delegation for their commitment to secure this funding.”
The funding will be distributed to the following organizations:
Community Food Bank of New Jersey, $5,200,000;
The Food Bank of South Jersey, $1,500,000;
Fulfill Monmouth & Ocean, $1,500,000;
Mercer Street Friends Food Bank, $1,100,000;
Southern Regional Food Distribution Center, $300,000; and
Farmers Against Hunger, $100,000.
“Food banks carry out a crucial and valuable role in serving the food insecure for all communities throughout New Jersey,” NJDA Secretary Douglas Fisher said. “This funding will help ensure access to meals and the necessary assistance for those who may find themselves in need of a helping hand during a time of stress.”
“Food insecurity is a quiet crisis that has been made worse by the pandemic,” said Senate President Steve Sweeney. “The economic fallout has made it tragically hard for a growing number of families to put food on their tables. No one in America should be allowed to go hungry and no family should be forced to live with the fear of not knowing where the next meal is coming from. These food banks are a lifeline for those in need during a time of difficult challenges.”
“Over 1.2 million people in this state now suffer from food insecurity, a staggering number that has increased substantially because of COVID-19,” said Senator Steven Oroho. “By lending a helping hand to large food banks, this law will help address the hunger crisis in New Jersey head-on.”
“Far too many families are struggling to put food on the table right now because of the financial impact of COVID-19,” said Speaker Craig Coughlin, Assemblywoman Angela Speight, and Assemblyman John Armato, in a joint statement. “Throughout this crisis, food banks have been providing critical support to community members in need – ensuring no one who seeks their help goes home hungry. Allocating funds to New Jersey’s food banks will help these organizations continue their important mission of helping residents get through challenging times.”
TRENTON, N.J. – Today the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee advanced legislation (A1045) sponsored by Assemblyman Ron Dancer that would exempt horse boarding, maintenance and related services from the state sales tax.
“There has been ongoing confusion in the industry about tax responsibilities, and as a result, stables have closed up shop and abandoned the state,” said Dancer (R-Ocean), who has been pushing the measure since November 2013.
Horse boarding, maintenance and servicing businesses are required to register as a seller with the Division of Taxation in the Department of Treasury. Under current law, they are being taxed as “space for storage.” The bill relieves these businesses and services from sales tax obligations.
“Horse-related business plays an important role in our state’s economy,” Dancer continued. “Establishing clear sales tax guidelines will save New Jersey jobs and businesses. Horses are farm livestock, not ‘storage units’ in a warehouse and are stabled, not stored.”
The Rutgers Equine Science Center estimates the horse industry contributes more than $1 billion to the economy in a state with more than $4 billion in equine-related assets.
The bill will now go to the Senate President for consideration. It passed the Assembly in June 2018.
Update: I have revived a communication from Assemblyman Ron Dancer that Bill A-4800 passed the Assembly Transportation and Independent Authorities Committee and will advance to the next process. See below:
“I am a co-sponsor of A4800 and am pleased to inform you that the bill passed Assembly Transportation and Independent Authorities Committee on November 18, 2019. “
Ron Dancer Assemblyman 12th Legislative District
TRENTON, NJ–Assembly Transportation and Committee will hear the Bill A-4800 on Monday November 18, 2019 for creation of a special licence plate for NJ’s State Animal the horse. The bill originally introduced on December 10, 2018 is sponsored by: Assemblyman Kevin J. Rooney, Assemblyman John J. Burzichelli, Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Assemblyman Daniel R. Benson, Co sponsored by Assemblymen Thompson and Dancer
UPPER FREEHOLD TOWNSHIP, NJ–The Standardbred Retirement Foundation held their “Holiday Fun at the Horse Farm” event Sunday. There was plenty to see and do for all, including a baby and mother horse where mom was tagged for slaughter and rescued. Horses were being shown in the riding rink outside as well as in the barn. A charity auction, outdoor fire place with marshmallows on a stick with hot cocoa, wine tasting, holiday shopping, free tack items, and the “Horse Plop Bingo” kept everyone busy.