Murphy Signs Small Business Relief Package Legislation

Brings Total to More than $600 Million in Small Business Relief Since the Start of the Pandemic
TRENTON – As New Jersey continues to recover from the ravages of the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Phil Murphy today signed five bills – A5704, A5705, A5706, A5707, and A5709 – which provide additional aid to small businesses that continue to suffer from the economic effects of the pandemic. Together, the bill package provides $235 million to small businesses throughout the state, allowing the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) to fulfill all eligible applications submitted during Phase IV of the EDA’s Small Business Emergency Grant Program. 
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10sc June 23, 2021

OP-ED: Why Homegrow Needs to Be Legalized in New Jersey

What is legalization of marijuana if people are not allowed to grow the plant themselves at home?

Back in November of 2020, the people of New Jersey overwhelmingly voted in favor of legalizing the possession and use of marijuana, in addition to allowing the cultivation, processing, and sale of retail marijuana.

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10sc June 16, 2021

Independent pharmacies should have a shot at getting the COVID-19 vaccine

In a time when everyone is doing all they can to help in any way, local mom and pop and independent pharmacies are no exception. These pharmacies have been eager to help their communities receive the COVID-19 vaccine, and have taken all of the necessary precautions to help administer the shots to their patients, yet the state has not allotted them the vaccines they need throughout this rollout, and has instead prioritized the big-box stores such as CVS, RiteAid, and Walgreens. Why does New Jersey prioritize corporations over mom-and-pop small-businesses, many in areas nowhere near a vaccine site?

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10sc March 12, 2021

Gopal, Democrats introduce bill to notify parents of first underage marijuana offense

Legislation will change parental notification from the second offense to the minor’s first offense.
Legislators and Advocates Urge for Immediate Action

TRENTON — Senate Majority Conference Leader Vin Gopal, Senator Joe Lagana, Senator Dawn Addiego, Assemblyman Eric Houghtaling and Assemblywoman Joann Downey will be introducing legislation to the New Jersey Legislature that will amend P.L.2021, c.25. The new legislation would require parental notification upon the first violation of underage possession or consumption of alcohol, cannabis item, marijuana or hashish for individuals under the age of 18. As the law stands, parental notification is currently only required at the second incident. 
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10sc March 08, 2021

Gopal, Houghtaling & Downey Urge Governor to Prioritize Teachers for Vaccine Distribution

The legislators request Governor Murphy add teachers, support staff and daycare workers to Group 1B for vaccine distribution across the state.

OCEAN TWP - Senator Vin Gopal and Assembly Members Eric Houghtaling and Joann Downey sent letters to Governor Murphy and the Department of Health requesting teachers, school support staff and daycare workers be added to Group 1B for vaccine distribution across the state. Understanding that demand is currently also greater than supply, Gopal, Houghtaling and Downey are also urging the Murphy Administration to begin meeting with school districts to discuss their potential vaccination plans for their employees who wish to receive it between now and this August. Planning now can help get districts ready for full in-person learning and normalcy for September 2021 which will greatly benefit our students, teachers and families.

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NJ Indoor Restaurant Mandates To Be Clarified by Murphy Administration

Indoor restaurant mandates will be clarified following a letter from the 11th Legislative District office regarding concerns from local restaurant owners.

NEPTUNE CITY - After investigating an issue that was reported by a constituent and Councilman David Calhoun, Senator Vin Gopal and Assembly Members Eric Houghtaling and Joann Downey sent a letter through the proper channels regarding concerns and questions from local restaurant owners on certain indoor dining mandates. Governor Murphy has now clarified certain requirements pertaining to restaurants. 

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10sc December 12, 2020

Gopal Bill S2901 Passes Through Committee

Legislation seeks to honor the memory of Braeden Bradforth, a Neptune resident who lost his life to heat stroke after a college football practice.

TRENTON -  Senator Gopal’s bill honoring Braeden Bradforth passed through the Senate Higher Education Committee on Thursday.  The death of this star athlete due to exertional heat stroke after football practice sent a shockwave through his community, and devastated his family.  This legislation seeks to protect other student athletes from suffering Braeden’s fate.

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10sc December 11, 2020

Gopal Bill to Establish ‘New Jersey Consolidation Transportation Task Force’ Clears Committee

Trenton – In response to the consolidation of multiple New Jersey transportation authorities, the Senate Transportation Committee today passed legislation sponsored by Senator Vin Gopal that would establish the New Jersey Consolidation Transportation Task Force.

The bill, S-1764, would create a task force to investigate and evaluate the consolidation of the New Jersey Transit Corporation, Transportation Trust Fund Authority, New Jersey Turnpike Authority, South Jersey Transportation Authority, and Department of Transportation.

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10sc December 08, 2020

Gopal Receives “Legislator of the Year” Award from the Jewish War Veterans of the U.S.A.

Gopal Receives “Legislator of the Year” Award from the Jewish War Veterans of the U.S.A.

OCEAN TOWNSHIP - Senator Gopal has received the Legislator of the Year award presented by the Jewish War Veterans of the U.S.A.. He was recognized for his legislative leadership in support of the armed forces and veterans’ communities of the United States of America. 

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Gopal Begins Bill Proposals for Quicker Vote Count

Gopal Begins Bill Proposals for Quicker Vote Count
Senator Gopal is pursuing legislation to establish quicker vote count methods for elections in New Jersey.

OCEAN TOWNSHIP - Senator Vin Gopal has announced his plan to pursue legislation relating to the timely counting of election results, and ensuring the county boards of elections offices have what they need to improve their vote-by-mail counting and processing capabilities. The pieces of legislation will be introduced into the State Senate in the upcoming weeks.

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10sc November 20, 2020

Gopal Bill Expanding Criteria for Municipalities for NJRA Passes Through Committee

OCEAN TOWNSHIP - Senator Vin Gopal’s legislation to assist municipalities in receiving assistance from the NJRA has passed through the Senate Economic Growth Committee. 

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10sc November 19, 2020

Gopal Bill Prohibiting Utility Service Rate Increases Passes Through Committee

Legislation aims to help residential customers with unexpected increases and penalties during public health emergencies.

OCEAN TOWNSHIP - Senator Gopal’s legislation passed with amendments through the Senate Economic Growth Committee this week. Bill S2325 prohibits utility service rate increases, penalties and discontinuances to residential customers during certain public health emergencies. These prohibitions and service restoration requirements are to remain in effect for the duration of, and 180 days following, a major public health emergency.

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10sc November 19, 2020

New Bill Package Introduced to Help Prevent Domestic Violence

Pieces of Legislation establish protection for those domestically abused ranging from changing the definition of domestic violence to extending medical help and care.

TRENTON - Senator Vin Gopal introduced a Domestic Violence Bill Package into the State Senate today. The bill package is dedicated to Stephanie Parze’s family, who has suffered a terrible loss due to an abusive boyfriend one year ago this month. The bill package has been introduced in the Assembly by Assemblywoman Joann Downey. Two bills from the package are Senate companion bills for legislation previously introduced in the Assembly by Assemblywomen Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Lisa Swain.

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10sc October 29, 2020

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