Assembly Committee To Take Up Anti-Bullying Bill

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TRENTON – An Assembly committee will consider anti-bullying legislation  today. The hearing will be streamed live at: http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/media/live_audio.asp.

The Assembly Education Committee will meet at 2 p.m. to consider anti-bullying legislation (A-3466) crafted by Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle. The bipartisan legislation is intended to combat harassment, intimidation and bullying among school-age children.

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“The truth is that every day there is a student in an elementary school, high school or even a college who feels a sense of fear and emotional dread every time he or she steps foot into the school building or signs onto the internet,” said Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen). “The negative impacts can be life long. For some students, it will hinder their academic performance. For others, it will mean something unspeakably worse. This bill is about changing the culture that drives these incidents and ensuring that when they do occur, they are properly addressed.”

“Schools need to be held accountable for addressing bullying and the devastating problems bullying can create,” said Assemblywoman Marty Pat Angelini (R-Monmouth), another of the bill’s sponsors. “Any form of intimidation, harassment, or bullying cannot be tolerated.”

The bill is also sponsored by, Patrick J. Diegnan Jr. (D-Middlesex), Amy Handlin (R-Monmouth/Middlesex), Paul Moriarty (D-Gloucester/Camden), John McKeon (D-Essex), Pamela R. Lampitt (D-Camden) and Mila M. Jasey (D-Essex).

The Assembly Education panel will also consider legislation (A-2571) to have New Jersey officially recognize the Nanticoke Lenni Lenape Indians, Ramapough Lenape Indians and Powhatan Renape Indians as American Indian Tribes.

The bill would allow the three tribes to establish eligibility for federal education, job training and housing benefits and protection for the sale of artwork, qualify for public and private grants, protect the ability to engage in traditional religious practices, preserve and protect burial sites and artifacts and ensuring that handicrafts made by tribal members may be sold as “Indian made.”

The bill does not allow the tribes to use the recognition to establish gambling facilities.

The Assembly Homeland Security and State Preparedness Committee will meet at 2 p.m. to consider legislation to improve evacuation plans in preparation for a catastrophic event or natural disaster, such as a hurricane or nor’easter. The measure (A-3224) stems from the final report of the Assembly Coastal New Jersey Evacuation Task Force.

The Assembly Military and Veterans’ Affairs Committee will consider legislation (A-1958) that would create a special license plate for the parents of soldiers killed on active duty.

The bill authorizes a special Gold Star Parent license plate for the parents of servicemen and servicewomen who lost their lives while on active duty for the United States. Stepparents and foster parents could also be among those eligible. The design would include a gold star and the words “Gold Star Parent.”

The panel will also hear testimony on assistance for veterans and returning service members that have suffered traumatic brain injuries, as well as a new veterans programs at Rutgers University.

Complete Assembly committee agendas can be found at http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/legislativepub/legcal.asp


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