2015 New Jersey Libertarian Party Convention
Tavern on the Lake, Hightstown
Saturday, March 21, 2015
Tentative Meeting Agenda
Call to order & quorum check 9:00 AM
Agenda review & approval 9:05 AM
Secretary's Report 9:10 AM
- Minutes of prior meeting (State Board Meeting 1/11/2015 )
Treasurer's report 9:15 AM
The platform committee of 2014-2015 consisted of Liz Macron (Committee Chair), Kyler Dineen, Patrick McKnight, Jay Edgar, Dan Karlan, Marc Carcanague, Jim Tosone, Bill Sihr, Justin Quinn, Jim Gawron, Dorit Goikhman, and Sean Riggs.
The proposals were approved by the committee on January 21st. Below are these proposals as they were accepted by the delegates attending our last State Convention on March 21st. All changes made at convention were incorporated below. Changes have also been incorporated into our full platform that can be found here.
Proposal #1. Plank 6 Education Transition statement change
Rationale for change:
The transition section should propose a solution that is politically feasible in today's political environment. The current suggestion having government schools “sold to private or non-profit enterprises” is not feasible as a transition. Technology changes provide much greater options for education than ever before. As a result of this and societal changes there are more educational options available than when the platform was last updated.
Proposed Change: Replace entire transition from:
Transition: All school-related taxes should be gradually repealed starting with the taxes on those without children or those whose children are in private school or no longer in school. We endorse dollar-for-dollar tax credits for any contribution to a recognized school. We also call for the repeal of the “thorough and efficient” provision of the New Jersey Constitution (Article VIII, Section IV, Paragraph 1).
Public schools should be sold to private or non-profit enterprises, including, if they wish, teachers or associations of teachers. Restriction and regulation of home schooling should be removed.
Transition: Education choice should be given to parents and children, encouraging schools to compete with each other. We support ending the government monopoly on education by allowing parents and taxpayers more choices where education tax money is spent and where and how their children are educated. School voucher programs, education tax credits, or charitable tax incentives should be used to encourage a free market in education.
Haven't our legislators learned anything? The State Assembly has unanimously passed A783, a bill that increases penalties for possession of various drugs. The goal is to go after distributors however it uses weight of material possessed as the only factor in determining seriousness of the offense. The bill decreases threshold offenses for many drugs.
Of note is the estimated financial impact: "Costs would total $3,393,164, in the third year following enactment, increase to $5,552,214 in the fourth year, and $7,711,264 during the fifth and succeeding years following enactment." The total financial impact is stated as being "higher than the amount estimated by the DOC by an undetermined amount."
For Immediate Release
November 24, 2014
NJ Libertarian Party Urges Vineland
Residents Not to Seize Judge’s Home
A Faulkner Act Petition has been created that will use eminent domain to seize the Vineland home of Superior Court Judge Julio Mendez for the purposes of erecting a hotel with a restaurant with the name of “Just Desserts.”
Judge Julio Mendez recently decided that eminent domain can be used by the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA) to seize the property of Charles Birnbaum despite no public use threshold or specific plans for the property.
Two years ago, New Jersey's Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA) approved something called the South Inlet Mixed Use Development Project, which was intended to "complement the new Revel Casino and assist with the demands created by the resort." Two months ago, the bankrupt Revel Casino closed.
The CRDA nevertheless is still trying to condemn a three-story brick house at 311 Oriental Avenue in Atlantic City as part of that Revel-inspired project, the details of which remain vague. In fact, the CRDA can't even say what it plans to do with the lot on which the house sits.
That's OK, according to Superior Court Judge Julio Mendez, who on Monday ruled that the CRDA may condemn first and answer questions later. Jacob Sullum says the ruling shows that no one's property is safe when eminent domain becomes unmoored from the "public use" that is supposed to justify it.
Letter to Prosecutor: School boards should not hire professional media consultants to "educate" voters on bond referenda
Geoffrey D. Soriano, Esq.
Somerset County Prosecutor
40 North Bridge St
P.O. BOX 3000
Somerville, New Jersey
Dear Prosecutor Soriano:
More than twenty years ago, I worked with Hillsborough resident Randy Enterline and the local chapter of the New Jersey Libertarian Party to challenge the Hillsborough Township school district's use of taxpayer money to produce a newsletter that urged voters to approve a referendum authorizing $54 million for a new high school. The effort resulted in a September 11, 1995 decision by Administrative Law Judge Solomon A. Metzger holding that the newsletter in question was "very much an advocacy piece." Accordingly, Judge Metzger held that the newsletter, even though it did not explicitly urge voters to vote "yes," was an impermissible expenditure of taxpayers' money because it attempted to sway voters' opinions.
The City of Trenton, like many cities across New Jersey and the nation, set an arbitrary limit on the number of taxicabs the city will license. In Trenton, City Code § 272-4(B), sets the maximum number of cabs at 82. Cities don't limit the number of bakeries or shoe stores in a town, so why taxicabs? Does this type of restriction benefit the public good or is its aim to protect existing cab owners from competition?
Similar taxicab limits have been struck down in other states for violating constitutional provisions guaranteeing equal protection under the law. In a 2013 case, Wisconsin Circuit Judge Jane Carroll found that Milwaukee's limit on taxicab licenses failed an equal protection analysis because it wasn't rationally related to the public health, safety, morals or general welfare. Judge Carroll's ruling, which is on-line here, states that the arbitrary limit on taxicabs indicates "the desire of the City to create a valuable asset for the current permit holders so that they could sell them and, as the one taxi driver indicated, retire comfortably to Florida, that's simply not a legitimate government purpose."
There are many economic theories that are debatable. The Law of Supply and Demand is not one of them. All reputable economists from all schools of economic thought agree - a high supply of a product results in lower prices. This is true of all goods that can be bought and sold - gasoline, food, labor, home services, and medical care. When there are more hospitals, hospital beds, medical services, and doctors that are willing to compete for your health care dollars there will be lower prices and better service. In a competitive market the consumer wins. When the supply is constrained the consumer loses.
New Jersey is one of 36 states that provides protectionism to existing medical suppliers by restricting capital improvements in health care by requiring all new facilities to obtain approval from a state board.
CATO Institute: The Cronyism of ‘Certificate of Need’ Laws
Once again the Tax Foundation has ranked NJ dead last among the 50 states for business climate. Contributing to NJ's awful business climate were our high property taxes (50th), high income taxes (48th), high sales taxes (48th), high corporate taxes (41st) and our high levels of regulation.
Tax Freedom Day Arrives on May 9th in New Jersey
Tax Freedom Day is the day when Americans finally have earned enough money to pay off their total tax bill for the year. In 2014, New Jersey taxpayers worked until May 9th (latest nationally) to pay their total tax bill. The Tax Freedom Days of neighboring states are: New York, May 4th (ranked 3rd latest nationally); Pennsylvania, April 21st (ranked 15th latest nationally); and Delaware, April 18th (ranked 19th latest nationally).
Today the Reason Foundation released their 21st Annual Report on the Performance of the State Highway System. This report ranks the quality and spending on the state highways based on data reported by each state for 2012 and part of 2011. Our legislators should be hanging their heads in shame while the taxpayers should be sharpening their pitchforks.
The condition of New Jersey highways ranks very low while spending per mile far outpaces the rest of the nation. New Jersey spends 12.5 times more than the national average per mile. This is over 3 times more than Massachusetts, the next lowest spender.
The NJ state Casino Reinvestment Development Authority is attempting to seize private property once again. They are attempting to use eminent domain to seize the home of Charles Birnbaum in Atlantic City. Mr. Birnbaum’s parents purchased this home in 1969. Mr. Birnbaum uses the home as a base for his piano-tuning business and rents the apartment in the house. The Declaration of Taking filed in February by the CRDA presents Mr. Birnbaum with a sum of $238,500 for the taking of his property. Zillow estimates the house worth to be $381,161.
The filing indicates that the property is being condemned, yet the property is in excellent condition.
The New Jersey Libertarian Party urges the passage of A2270 - the "Aid in Dying for the Terminally Ill" bill. The NJ Libertarian Party platform calls for "the repeal of all laws interfering with the right to commit suicide as infringement of the ultimate right of an individual to his or her own life."
New Jersey Libertarian Party
PO Box 56
Tennent, NJ 07763
Assemblyman Michael Patrick Carroll
146 Speedwell Avenue
Morris Plains, NJ 07950
Dear Assemblyman Carroll:
We are writing to you today to convey our strong support for the “Aid in Dying for the Terminally Ill” Act (A2270). This legislation affirms the right of a qualified, terminally ill adult patient to obtain a prescription from his or her physician for medication that the patient may choose to self-administer for a humane and dignified death.
In response to recent media reports about the increase in Latin American children seeking entry into the United States, Libertarian Party Chair Nicholas Sarwark released this statement:
Should the U.S. government forbid foreign children from entering the United States? The Libertarian Party says no.
It would be unjust and inhumane for the U.S. government to prohibit these children from entering the United States.
A great irony is that U.S. government policies have caused the conditions that some of these Central American children are fleeing. The War on Drugs has created a huge black market in Latin America, causing increases in gang activity and violent crime. Some of the affected children naturally try to flee this violence. It is wrong to jeer at them, call them "illegals," and tell them to get out.