News

Zwicker to Host Annual Job Fair

Assemblyman Andrew Zwicker will host a job fair Wednesday in Branchburg.

"Employers seeking talent should look no further than New Jersey, a state with a well-educated, well-trained workforce made up of men and women who are eager to put their skills and knowledge to use," said Zwicker (D-Hunterdon/Mercer/Middlesex/Somerset). "This event will connect people who are searching for a job or want a change in jobs with new opportunities."

The job fair will be held on Sept. 27 from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Raritan Valley Community College, located at 118 Lamington Road, Branchburg, NJ 08876. The event will take place in the gymnasium in the Physical Education Building on the main campus of the college. Parking will be available in Lot 2 and throughout the campus.

Members of the public are encouraged to attend the free event and network with local recruiters for opportunities with public and private entities within the Central Jersey region.

Interested parties may contact Joe Forte via email at AsmZwicker[at]njleg.org or by phone at 609-454-3147 with inquiries. Note, however, that no RSVP from job seekers is required for attendance. 

A list of participating employers is available here.


Zwicker & VA to Hold Thursday Claims Clinic for Veterans

Assemblyman Andrew Zwicker is partnering with the Department of Veterans Affairs to organize a Thursday claims clinic for local veterans.

"Veterans and their families have made so many sacrifices for our nation," said Zwicker (D-Hunterdon/Mercer/Middlesex/Somerset). "We have an obligation to help them navigate the complex benefits system so that they receive the benefits they've earned."

The Veterans Claims Clinic will be held on Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Hunterdon County Library, located at 314 NJ-12, Flemington, NJ 08822. Check-in will begin at 9:15 a.m., and light refreshments will be served from 9:15 a.m. to 10 a.m.
The clinic will allow veterans and their dependents to learn about benefits and entitlements, submit a claim for benefits or check the status of a pending VA claim. Lillie Nuble, director of the VA's Newark office, will be available to assist individuals with their VA benefits claims.

"It is my privilege to do all I can to serve these courageous men and women and their families," said Zwicker. "This forum will provide veterans in our area with a personalized, one-on-one consultation about their benefits claims in a convenient location."
Interested parties may contact Joe Forte of Assemblyman Zwicker's office at 732-713-3716 or asmzwicker@njleg.org with questions or concerns.


Zwicker: NJ Transit Compromises Passenger Safety

Assemblyman Andrew Zwicker (D-Hunterdon/Mercer/Middlesex/Somerset) issued the following statement regarding the Assembly Judiciary Committee's recent joint hearing with the Senate Legislative Oversight Committee on NJ Transit operations:

"Reform is long overdue in a transit system where hostile workplace environments, discrimination and patronage hiring threaten passenger safety and undermine public confidence.

"Conditions described at Friday's hearing again spotlight the governor's failure to take action on this issue.

"Safety must be the first priority at NJ Transit for the sake of employees and passengers alike. More diligence is needed in implementing positive train control and other means of making mass transit safer for commuters. And, safety goes beyond proper equipment. A large part of ensuring the well-being of New Jersey's public transportation network is fostering a culture where workers are respected and do not fear retribution for reporting unsuitable conditions. Unfortunately, the allegations we heard Friday show that NJ Transit has a toxic culture that jeopardizes passengers' safety."


Zwicker Announces Fall Mobile Hour Schedule

Assemblyman Andrew Zwicker on Thursday announced upcoming mobile office hour dates. The office hours will provide constituents with opportunities to receive support in matters related to state agencies, voice their opinions on state issues and familiarize themselves with services available through Zwicker's legislative office.

"Mobile office hours give constituents from all over the 16th District the opportunity to ask questions, express their concerns and discuss ways to improve our community," said Zwicker (D-Hunterdon/Mercer/Middlesex/Somerset). "These conversations will help shape the future of New Jersey." 

Constituents may visit the locations listed from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on each of the following dates:

Hillsborough Public Library
379 South Branch Road, Hillsborough Township, NJ 08844
Wednesday, September 6
Wednesday, October 4
Wednesday, November 1

Hunterdon County Library
314 NJ-12, Flemington, NJ 08822
Wednesday, September 20
Wednesday, October 18
Wednesday, November 15
Wednesday, December 20

For more information please email AsmZwicker[at]njleg.org or call 609-454-3147. 


Zwicker Measures Yield Millions in Grants for Local Farmland Preservation Projects

(TRENTON) – Two bills Assemblyman Andrew Zwicker sponsored to fund farmland preservation were signed into law by the governor on Monday, after receiving unanimous approval in both houses of the legislature.

“Agriculture is one of the largest components of New Jersey’s economy, so supporting that industry is critical for our state,” said Zwicker (D-Hunterdon/Mercer/Middlesex/Somerset). “Some of the biggest challenges in farming are access to land and capital. These appropriations will help ease that financial burden.”

The first new law (A-4582) provides a total of $32.5 million in farmland preservation grants around the state. The sum includes $4 million in grants for communities in the 16th Legislative District, with $1 million each going to Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex and Somerset counties. The legislation also makes each of these counties eligible for additional grants of up to $5 million. In total, the funds would cover up to 80 percent of the cost of acquiring easements for farmland preservation purposes.

The second new law (A-4584) appropriates $7.5 million in farmland preservation grants, including a $500,000 grant for Delaware Township in Hunterdon County.

“Farmland preservation is the foundation of the agriculture industry,” said Zwicker. “In addition to providing direct economic benefits to the entire state, investing in farmland preservation creates stability for New Jersey’s farmers, helps limit sprawl and preserves the beauty of our communities.”


Now Law: Mosquera, Moriarty, Lagana, Zwicker & Downey Bill to Help Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault Victims Seek Justice Against Their Abusers

Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Gabriela Mosquera, Paul Moriarty, Joseph Lagana, Andrew Zwicker and Joann Downey to allow victims and witnesses of domestic violence and sexual assault to testify against their abusers via closed circuit television under certain circumstances was signed into law on Monday.

"Having to recount an abusive relationship in front of your abuser can be unnerving for an individual who's been battered," said Mosquera (D-Camden/Gloucester). "For children who may have witnessed their mother being abused, it can be equally frightening to have to testify in a courtroom with the abuser, especially if the abuser is a parent. Permitting victims and young witnesses to testify via closed circuit television will allow them to confront their abusers without fear."

The new law (A-1199) permits witnesses and victims to testify against the defendant via closed circuit television in prosecutions for a crime involving domestic violence, certain sex crimes or crimes involving the abuse or neglect of a child.

"Domestic abuse is traumatic. Some victims are so frightful of their abusers that they would rather not press charges or even testify in court for fear of retribution," said Moriarty (D-Camden/Gloucester). "This law makes it easier for victims to come forward and get justice."

"Oftentimes victims struggle over whether or not to report their abusers because they fear for their safety," said Lagana (D-Bergen/Passaic). "This law will help victims hold their abusers accountable without fear of doing so under their glare in a courtroom." 

"This is the right thing to do for victims who have already suffered too much," said Zwicker (D-Hunterdon/Somerset/Mercer/Middlesex). "We need to take whatever humane steps we can if there's a substantial likelihood that the witness would suffer severe emotional or mental distress if required to testify in open court."

"The criminal justice system works most effectively when witnesses and victims can provide the testimony necessary to assess the facts of a case," said Downey (D-Monmouth). "When these individuals have a means of talking without fear, it helps ensure that the judicial process functions the way it should."

Under previous law, the court may order the taking of the testimony of a witness 16 years of age or younger on closed circuit television in prosecutions for aggravated sexual assault, sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual contact, criminal sexual contact, human trafficking involving sexual activity, child abuse or in any action alleging an abused or neglected child if the court finds that there is a substantial likelihood that the witness would suffer severe emotional or mental distress if required to testify in open court. 

The new law will expand previous law to encompass victims and witnesses of any age, and provide that the court, in granting an order to allow closed circuit testimony, shall assure that: the victim or witness will testify under oath; the victim or witness will submit to cross-examination by the defendant's attorney; and the defendant, jury, and judge will be permitted to observe the demeanor of the victim or witness when making testimonial statements using closed circuit television. 

In addition, the measure clarifies certain procedural provisions, including that the defendant's counsel would be present in the same room as the victim or witness at the taking of testimony on closed circuit television, and that the defendant and defendant's attorney may confer privately with each other during the testimony by a separate audio system.

Under the law, the video portion of the closed circuit testimony would not be recorded and would not be part of the record on appeal. Only the audio portion of the testimony would be recorded. Such audio recording could be part of the record on appeal, depending on the age of the victim or witness and the order of the court.