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Katz on Christie What Christie's Financial Disclosure Statement Doesn't Disclose
Gov. Chris Christie this week filed his mandatory financial disclosure statement, which was notable for what it did not disclose:
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In The Spotlight

Airing a concern that will certainly raise the eyebrows of the average New Jersey homeowner, budget officials in Trenton this week said they are worried that the state is starting to collect too much money that’s dedicated only to property tax relief. More and more money is coming into the annual budget that can only be used on programs that are considered property-tax relief -- primarily school aid, municipal aid and direct-relief initiatives like the one that pays for Homestead credits. The result is that there is increasingly less money available for other areas of spending that are not considered property tax relief, like transportation, environmental programs, and hospital aid. Read more
NJ Spotlight Daily News

May 21, 2015

Tax-Revenue Double Take: Too Much Money Going to Property-Tax Relief?
John Reitmeyer | Budget
It seems impossible in a state with some of the highest property taxes in the country, but the way the money is divvied up could mean other programs are not getting their fair share
Jersey City Charter Schools Claim They’re Being Shortchanged by State
John Mooney | Education
Disparity in aid compared to district schools is focus of continuing legal battle
In New World of Healthcare Choices, Helping Patients Make Good Decisions
Andrew Kitchenman | Healthcare
As patients take on responsibility of choosing their insurers, doctors and medical procedures, new risks and opportunities arise
Poll: Is It Finally Time for New Jersey to Allow Self-Service Gas Stations?
Pumping their own gas may save motorists a few cents, but are the savings worth potential environmental problems?
Op-Ed: The Morning After June 5 Primary? This Time, You Might As Well Sleep In
John Weingart | Opinion
With only five districts home to Democratic and Republican runoffs, it’s hard to remember that voting is a right, not a chore
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May 20, 2015

What Christie's Financial Disclosure Statement Doesn't Disclose
Matt Katz | Katz on Christie
Gov. Chris Christie this week filed his mandatory financial disclosure statement, which was notable for what it did not disclose:
State Treasurer’s Paltry Revenue Projection Holds Out Little Hope for FY2016
John Reitmeyer | Budget
If state’s top court finds for public workers in pension litigation, administration might have to cut into large programs like education, healthcare
BPU Reclassifies Basic Phone Service, Paves Way for Verizon Rate Hike
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Move could drive up price of residential service to New Jersey’s most vulnerable communities -- seniors , the disabled, and the poor
Proposed Legislation Could Reduce Religious Exemptions for Vaccinations
Andrew Kitchenman | Healthcare
Opponents say the law would be unconstitutional, but supporters say it’s similar to measures upheld in other states
$200M Development Plan for Former Hospital Bodes Well for Town’s Health
Joe Tyrrell | Housing, Planning
Six-acre site of shuttered Irvington General Hospital makes way for 700 residential units combined with commercial space
Opinion: If It Looks And Smells Like Sewage, It Could Be Stormwater
R. William Potter | Opinion
DEP needs to take the battle against runoff to the municipalities, where most local land-use decisions are made
Yo Christie, Did You Hear What The Next Mayor of Philly Said About You?
Matt Katz | Katz on Christie
Philadelphia Councilman Jim Kenney, riding a wave of support from traditional union political bosses and a progressive coalition of young voters, handily defeated several opponents to secure the Democratic nomination for mayor Tuesday.

May 19, 2015

Obama Plays In Christie's Democratic Sandbox
Matt Katz | Katz on Christie
The new police department in Camden, NJ, was conceived by a Democratic powerbroker, endorsed by his ally -- the Republican governor -- and is now being promoted as a national model by a Democratic president
How the NJ CARE Act Will Ease the Burden on Family Caregivers
A timely assessment into how this critical legislation works and why it is important to those who are or who think they may be caring for a loved one at home.
In Camden, President Obama Talks Community Policing and Building Trust
Tara Nurin | Politics
President commends police force for dramatic reduction in crime, even as department faces complaints about use of excessive force, cooking crime statistics
Something New Could Be in the Offing at Gas Pumps in New Jersey -- Self-Service
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Bill would let Garden State drivers pump their own, but would keep full-service islands for disabled customers, others
‘Moms Clean Air Force’ Lands in Trenton to Spread Word About Kids and Pollution
Meir Rinde | Energy & Environment, Politics
Grassroots group relies on mothers and children to put a human face to environmental problems
Explainer: What Was Behind the Sudden Decision to Close Izod Center’s Doors?
Lilo H. Stainton | Explainer
NJ Sports and Exposition Authority’s close-mouthed about how and why venue had to close doors and reach deal with Prudential Center
Crunch Time for Tax-Revenue Numbers That Shape Budget for This Year, Next Year
John Reitmeyer | Budget
If tax revenue comes in significantly over projections -- estimated at $200M -- administration could bump up public-worker pension payment
Opinion: Top-Court Ruling Could Bail Out Christie, Sweeney -- or Both
Carl Golden | Opinion
Governor and Senate president are locked in mutual stare-down over pension reform that may be beyond simple resolution
State Auditor Raises Questions About Payments to Community Health Centers
Andrew Kitchenman | Healthcare
But lawyer for facilities contends that federal courts have already upheld their interpretation of the law governing payments
Education Issues – from PARCC to Superintendents’ Pay – Focus of State Senate
John Mooney | Education
Democrats’ bills make their way through Senate committee but face two key obstacles – GOP lawmakers and Gov. Christie

May 18, 2015

Obama Visits Camden to Praise Police Efforts
Matt Katz | Katz on Christie
President Obama will be in Camden, N.J. on Monday afternoon to deliver a speech about policing in the wake of friction between officers and civilians around the country ...
Advocates Want Consumers to Be Part of Conversation About Verizon Rates
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Division of Rate Counsel calls private negotiation ‘offense to public’s interest and legal rights’
Up for Vote, Senate Bill Would Strike Down Superintendent Salary Caps
John Mooney | Education
Measure raises important question: How many Senate Republicans will line up to go against one of Christie’s early educational reforms?
Local Governments May Be Steering Clear of Christie’s Pension-Reform Roadmap
John Reitmeyer | Budget
Concern is that Republican changes could drive up property taxes, already highest in the nation
The List: As Primary Election Draws Near, Where are Garden State’s Voters?
Colleen O'Dea | The List
Of the state’s 5.4 million registered voters, only those affiliated with a party – or willing to declare an affiliation—can cast ballots on June 2
State DEP Continues to Stall Release of Long-Overdue Draft Water-Supply Plan
Jon Hurdle | Energy & Environment
NJ does not face drought crisis, but stringent conservation measures almost sure to be recommended by water-supply council
GOP Lawmakers May Oppose Legislation to Cap Out-of-Network Healthcare Costs
Andrew Kitchenman | Healthcare
Munoz worries that if state moves to cap reimbursements, doctors may decide to give Garden State a wide berth
Op-Ed: PARCC Testing Could Be Healthy for Our Kids, If Done for Right Reasons
Scott A. Oswald | Opinion
Assessments can help improve education and measure student progress – but they can also be used to tear down teachers and put pressure on kids
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