News From Congressman Frank LoBiondo

LoBiondo?s Statement on the Retirement of Rep. Jim Saxton

WASHINGTON, D.C. ? U.S. Congressman Frank A. LoBiondo (NJ-02) today issued the following statement upon the retirement announcement of fellow New Jersey Congressman Jim Saxton (NJ-03). The two members have served in Congress together since 1995, currently sit on the House Armed Services Committee together, and have adjacent districts in South Jersey.

?Congressman Saxton?s retirement is a great loss for his constituents, the state of New Jersey, and the Congress. Throughout his career in public service, Jim has put his district and his state first. He has been unwavering in his efforts to preserve the environment, promote sound economic policies, and ensure greater access to health care for New Jersey families. Of Jim?s countless legislative successes, his consistent advocacy on behalf of the our nation?s armed forces and fierce protection of the servicemen and women stationed at Fort Dix, McGuire AFB and Navy Lakehurst will unquestionably be his legacy.?

?Having served with Jim for the past 13 years, it is with deep appreciation for his mentorship and life-long gratitude for his friendship that I wish him and his family the best in his future adventures.?

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Congress Approves $500,000 for Atlantic City International Airport

Additional $100,000 for Proposed Aviation Research Park Included in Bill

WASHINGTON, D.C. ? U.S. Representative Frank A. LoBiondo (NJ-02) announced that the House-Senate conference report for the Fiscal Year 2008 Transportation- HUD Appropriations bill containing $500,000 for the Atlantic City International Airport has been approved. The funding, combined with the $6 million secured by LoBiondo and announced earlier this fall, will go to expansion of the current apron which will enhance safety and expand capacity at the airport.

?With more than a million people traveling to and from Atlantic City via air travel last year alone, this federal support is critical to expanding the operations and facilities while improving safety and security at the Atlantic City International Airport,? said LoBiondo, a member of the House Aviation Subcommittee. ?I will continue to work for additional federal resources for the airport to ensure the safety and comfort of passengers and visitors to the region.?

“Thanks to the efforts of Congressman LoBiondo in obtaining these funds that will be immediately applied to further the ACY Apron Expansion project,? said South Jersey Transportation Authority Executive Director Bart R. Mueller. ?This is an urgently needed project that will allow the airport to meet aviation standards while accommodating the unprecedented growth at ACY and provide for safe airside movements.”

Also included in the legislation is $100,000 in federal funding for the proposed Aviation Research and Technology Park at the William J. Hughes FAA Tech Center in Atlantic County. The funding would be directed to the County of Atlantic County for the planning and development of the proposed industrial park.

The proposed Aviation Research and Technology Park would be located on a 55-acre parcel controlled by the FAA’s William J. Hughes Technical Center in Egg Harbor Township. The park will provide an environment where advanced concepts in aviation research can be explored by engineers, computer scientists, mathematicians and air traffic controllers to advance the modernization and protection of our national airspace system and increasing airspace and airpo rt capacity. This money follows the $350,000 secured last week in the FY08 Labor-HHS Appropriations Bill and $75,000 in an economic development grant for the Atlantic County Improvement Authority to initiate the feasibility study.

The House approved the FY08 Transportation-HUD spending bill 270 to 147. The Senate is expected to also approve the bill this week. The President has signaled his intention to veto the annual appropriations bill.

# # #

__________________________________________________________________________________________

LoBiondo Encourages Seniors to Take Opportunity to Ensure Current Prescription Drug Program Meets Their Needs

Open Enrollment Period for Changing Plans Runs Now until End of Year

WASHINGTON, D.C. ? U.S. Representative Frank A. LoBiondo (NJ-02) today encouraged local seniors who are currently unhappy with their Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit plans or whose coverage needs have changed over the past year to research and compare the more than 50 plans available in New Jersey. The open enrollment period begins today (November 15th) and will run until December 31st.

?Until the end of the year, South Jersey seniors have the opportunity to compare all the options available to them and select a prescription drug plan that may help save them additional money. I encourage those who currently participate or are newly eligible to closely examine their drug coverage needs and find a plan that best suits their needs,? said LoBiondo.

The Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit provides assistance to seniors and eligible low-income individuals in paying their prescription drug costs. Since its beginning in January 2006, Medicare-eligible seniors enrolled in the Benefit have been receiving an average savings of $1,200. According to the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), more than 38 million seniors nation-wide are voluntarily enrolled and accessing the benefits of the program, with more than 82,000 seniors with prescription drug coverage in New Jersey?s 2nd Congressional District.

Earlier this year, LoBiondo voted in support of H.R. 4, the “Medicare Prescription Drug Price Negotiation Act of 2007.” The legislation would authorize the Secretary of the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) to leverage Medicare’s significant buying power to lower drug costs for seniors participating within the Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit. The nation?s largest seniors-advocacy group, AARP, supported the legislation which was approved by the House.

?I remain committed to expanding affordable healthcare coverage to all in our state,? said LoBiondo. ?My office is willing to assist any South Jersey senior with questions they may have and direct those who are interested in reviewing available plans and enrolling to the appropriate state and federal agencies.?

Seniors who need additional information should call 1-800-MEDICARE or visit www.medicare.gov. For assistance in enrolling, seniors should contact the New Jersey State Health Insurance Program (SHIP) at 1-800-792-8820 or the specific county office listed below:

Atlantic County?s Division of Intergenerational Services ? (609) 645.7700 ext 4271

Burlington County?s RSVP ? (609) 984.9311 ext 7498

Cape May County?s Department of Aging ? (609) 886.8138

Cumberland County?s Office on Aging ? (856) 453.8066

Gloucester County?s RSVP ? (856) 468.1742

Salem County?s Office on Aging ? (856) 339.8622

If additional assistance is required, seniors are encouraged to contact Congressman LoBiondo?s Mays Landing office at (609) 625.5008 or 1-800-471-4450.

Leave a Reply