Hometown: Lumberton, NJ
Occupation: Attorney/Government Affairs Professional
Top 3 Issues: School funding; property tax relief; infrastructure
Free-time activity: “My top two hobbies are physical fitness and working with animals. I spend a lot of time in the gym – I ride my bike out around a district. Tomorrow [July 27th, 2019], I’m actually going to be in a 45-mile bike ride that benefits several local community organizations in the district. I also spend a fair amount of time volunteering with our animal shelter in Burlington County.”
Social Media: Facebook
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My name is Gina LaPlaca and I am running for the General Assembly in the 8th Legislative District.
I grew up in a family that placed a high value on civic engagement and public service, and I always knew that one day it would be my turn to give back to the State that has given so much to me.
My parents also placed a strong emphasis on the importance of education and made great financial sacrifices to ensure that I had access to the best educational opportunities. I am a proud product of New Jersey’s public schools, but it is not lost on me how much my parents had to scratch and claw just to afford to stay in a community that had a highly-rated school system.
As I talk with my neighbors in Lumberton, and voters all throughout the district, I consistently hear concern and even fear — fear that they won’t be able to afford to stay in
their homes; fear that the retirement they have worked so hard for will not be there for them; fear that the quality of the schools they are already paying so much for will begin to decline due to cuts in state aid.
For too long incumbents in our district have blamed their inaction on being in the minority. The residents of our district know that this is just an excuse that stems from their unwillingness to work across the aisle to get things done for our communities and that because of their relentless partisanship our district currently has no real voice in the State Assembly.
We are disproportionately affected by a school funding formula that has us paying more than our fair share of taxes while our school districts have been seeing funding cuts. It’s time to bring funding back to our schools and lower property taxes.
Working families and Seniors are burdened under the weight of excessive property taxes that the incumbent establishment has categorically failed to address.
Our infrastructure is simply inadequate for residents in South Jersey and hurts our regional economy. We need a stronger infrastructure to attract companies and grow jobs in our communities.
We also need to ensure that our access to affordable healthcare is protected against the attacks we’ve seen from national extremists who would rather have senior citizens choose between paying their property taxes and buying needed medication.
And we need to ensure that working women in our state are afforded the same treatment and compensation in the workplace as their male counterparts are. No woman should make less for doing the same job than a man.
I’m not interested in political grandstanding and I’m not running for office to further anyone else’s political agenda. I am running because I’ve listened to the concerns of my neighbors, and believe that the residents of the 8th District deserve fresh, new voices in the State Legislature who are willing to do the hard work necessary to advance smart, pragmatic solutions to the problems we all face.
As a young professional who is also raising a family, I know all too well that what happens in Trenton has the ability to change lives here in South Jersey. I believe in a politics of purpose, not in a politics of personal gain, and that’s what separates me from my opposition and why I am running to represent South Jersey in the State Assembly.