New Jersey's 21st Legislative District

Senator Tom Kean, Jr.

Senator Tom Kean

Kean: Democrats’ Flawed Bill to “End” Public Health Emergency Can Hardly Be Called a Compromise

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Republicans Were Never Consulted on Measure Extending Murphy’s Emergency Powers & Pandemic Restrictions Until Next Year

Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean said a flawed bill agreed to by Governor Phil Murphy and legislative Democrats to extend pandemic emergency measures until 2022 can hardly be called a compromise when no Republicans were consulted.

Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean said a flawed bill agreed to by Gov. Phil Murphy and legislative Democrats to extend pandemic emergency measures until 2022 can hardly be called a compromise when no Republicans were consulted. (SenateNJ.com)

After the rushed bill was pulled from the Assembly’s agenda today in response to public outrage, the Senate President said he was disappointed in Republicans for not supporting the “compromise” legislation.

“It’s hard to call the bill a ‘compromise’ when Republicans were never consulted or invited to be part of any negotiation on ending the public health emergency,” said Kean (R-21). “Keeping emergency executive orders and unnecessary restrictions in place after the public health emergency has ended makes absolutely no sense. If asked, we would have told them it’s a bad deal.”

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Senator Tom Kean

Kean-Sponsored Bill, “Laura Wooten’s Law,” Approved by Assembly

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Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean’s legislation named in honor of Mrs. Laura Wooten that requires civics instruction in middle school has been approved by the New Jersey Assembly.

Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean’s legislation that requires civics instruction in middle school was approved by the New Jersey Assembly. (Pixabay)

“Civics education helps foster an understanding and appreciation of our democracy,” said Senator Kean (R-21). “All students should have the opportunity to learn about the function of government, the rights of citizens, and the values that underpin American democracy. This legislation will give students the skills and knowledge they need to actively participate in a democratic society.”

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Senator Tom Kean

On Tax Day, Kean Calls for Action on Bill to Create Charitable Deduction

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Measure Creates Tax Deduction for Contributions to NJ Charities During COVID-19 Pandemic

With tax filings for 2020 due today, Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean said many New Jersey taxpayers will once again notice an important tax deduction for charitable giving is offered on federal but not state returns.

With tax filings for 2020 due, Sen. Tom Kean said many New Jersey taxpayers will once again notice an important tax deduction for charitable giving is offered on federal but not state returns. (SenateNJ.com)

“In a year when many New Jerseyans contributed to local charities that supported communities and families impacted by the pandemic, taxpayers were likely surprised to learn when preparing tax returns that New Jersey offers no income tax deduction for charitable giving,” said Kean (R-21). “As charitable nonprofits try to recover from the pandemic, the lack of a New Jersey tax deduction may impact their ability to raise funds and continue helping people. We have bipartisan legislation that’s stalled in the General Assembly that could address those needs and concerns.”

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Senator Tom Kean

Kean/Singleton Bill Making Trunk Fighting a Crime Becomes Law

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A bill sponsored by Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean and Senator Troy Singleton making trunk fighting with dogs an animal cruelty offense and a crime of the third degree was signed today by Governor Murphy.

Legislation sponsored by Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean and Senator Troy Singleton making trunk fighting with dogs an animal cruelty offense and a crime of the third degree was signed by Governor Murphy. (©iStock)

The new law, S-975, defines trunk fighting as enclosing two or more dogs in the trunk of a motor vehicle and instigating them to fight to the death.

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Senator Kristin Corrado
Senator Tom Kean

Corrado & Kean Host “Return to School Roundtable” with Parents, Students, Educators & Experts

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Senator Kristin Corrado and Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean hosted a virtual “Return to School Roundtable” with parents, students, educators, and experts to discuss returning students to classrooms full time and the various challenges that have resulted from the pandemic.

The meeting was held this morning via Zoom and livestreamed for public viewing on Facebook Live.

Sen. Kristin Corrado and Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean hosted a Return to School Roundtable on Friday, May 7, 2021. (NJ Senate Republicans/YouTube)

“I’m glad we could provide a forum for parents, students, and education advocates to have an open discussion with their lawmakers about the importance of returning to school in a manner that is both responsible and safe,” said Corrado (R-40). “There was broad consensus that many students are missing out on a variety of important interactions and support systems both inside and outside of their classrooms resulting in learning loss and physical and emotional harm. It’s imperative that we get kids back into the classroom full time as soon as possible.”

“There was a clear and uniform sentiment expressed by our panelists that the potential risks to students of COVID-19 in a school setting is less than the real harm that is impacting students due to learning loss and social isolation with continued hybrid and remote learning,” said Kean (R-21). “We also heard repeated concerns that districts have struggled with differing county and local health department requirements leading to a wild inconsistency in school closures and pandemic response measures. It’s clear that we need to open up our schools fully and trust that our administrators know how to keep their students and teachers safe.”

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Senator Kristin Corrado
Senator Tom Kean

TODAY @ 10 AM: Corrado & Kean to Livestream Return to School Roundtable

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Senator Kristin Corrado (R-40) and Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean (R-21) will hold a virtual Return to School Roundtable today, Friday, May 7 at 10 a.m.

Sen. Kristin Corrado and Sen. Tom Kean will livestream a Return to School Roundtable with parents, students and education professionals today, Friday, May 7 at 10 a.m. (SenateNJ.com)

During the livestreamed meeting, the senators will talk with parents, students, and education professionals about returning students to the classroom full time and the challenges and concerns resulting from pandemic-related disruptions.

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Senator Tom Kean

Kean Legislation Helping Underrepresented Students in STEM Programs Signed into Law

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Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean’s legislation requiring new guidance in the recruitment of underrepresented students for STEM programs was signed into law today by Governor Murphy.

Sen. Kean’s legislation requiring new guidance in the recruitment of underrepresented students for STEM programs was signed into law by Gov. Murphy. (Pixabay)

“I am pleased that this legislation was signed today. STEM fields are some of the fastest-growing in the country and students who would like to pursue a STEM career should be able to do so regardless of their gender or ethnicity,” said Kean (R-21). “This law will make certain that colleges and universities focus on ways to recruit historically underrepresented students in STEM programs.”

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Senator Tom Kean

Kean & Gopal Bill to Examine State Funding for Higher Education

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Requires Development of Funding Formula to Support College & Universities, Keep Tuition Affordable

Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean and Senator Vin Gopal are sponsoring bipartisan legislation that would help ensure predictable state funding for New Jersey’s colleges and universities to keep tuition affordable for students.

Sen. Tom Kean and Sen. Vin Gopal are sponsoring bipartisan legislation that would help ensure predictable state funding for New Jersey’s colleges and universities to keep tuition affordable for students. (SenateNJ.com)

“Now that National College Decision Day has passed, many students and their parents are likely coming to grips with the reality that paying for tuition this fall, even at a supposedly lower-cost state school, isn’t as affordable as they had hoped,” said Kean (R-21). “That’s because our state has consistently underfunded our colleges and universities leading to tuition increases and a crisis of affordability. It’s time for New Jersey to systematically address the funding needs of our state colleges to lower costs for students and reduce the need for loans that may take decades to repay after graduation.”

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Senator Kristin Corrado
Senator Tom Kean

MEDIA ADVISORY (5/7): Corrado & Kean to Livestream Return to School Roundtable

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Senator Kristin Corrado (R-40) and Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean (R-21) will hold a virtual Return to School Roundtable on Friday, May 7 at 10 a.m.

Sen. Kristin Corrado and Sen. Tom Kean will livestream a Return to School Roundtable with parents, students and education professionals on Friday, May 7 at 10 a.m. (SenateNJ.com)

During the livestreamed meeting, the senators will talk with parents, students, and education professionals about returning students to the classroom full time and the challenges and concerns resulting from pandemic-related disruptions.

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Senator Tom Kean

Kean Statement on Passing of NJ Hall-of-Famer Steve Kalafer

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Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean issued the following statement on the passing of Steve Kalafer, an inductee in the New Jersey Hall of Fame:

Statement from Sen. Tom Kean on the passing of NJ Hall-of-Famer Steve Kalafer. (CC0 Public Domain)

“Steve was a loving family man, an all-star in business, including as founder of the Somerset Patriots, and a dedicated philanthropist who cared about improving his community. He truly lived a Hall of Fame life that should serve as a model for us all.”


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