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NJ Spotlight Daily News

June 29, 2015

The List: Ten Major ‘Adjustments’ Christie Made to Proposed Budget
Staff of NJ Spotlight | The List
Some cuts, like the $1.6B lopped out of the state pension fund were a given; others, like money withheld from school districts in the Pinelands, may come as a surprise
Parent Company of JCP&L Wants to Spin Off Utility’s Transmission Assets
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
FirstEnergy looks to create new enterprise with JCP&L assets, along with those from two Pennsylvania utilities
Could Christie’s Record on Gay Marriage Hurt Him With Conservatives, Liberals?
Hank Kalet | Politics, Social
Does Christie have an identity issue that could hurt him in the primaries -- too conservative for moderates, too liberal for the right?

June 27, 2015

Budget Business as Usual: Christie Line-Item Vetoes $1.6B from Dems' Plan
John Reitmeyer | Budget, Politics
Governor volunteers one giveback, no-strings-attached offer to raise Earned Income Tax Credit to 30 percent, helping NJ’s lowest-paid workers
Christie Uses Budget Signing to Weigh in on Wide Variety of Issues
John Mooney | Politics
From Cami Anderson’s departure to Supreme Court’s decisions, governor wants New Jersey -- and the country -- to know where he stands

June 26, 2015

Budget Goes to Gov. Christie, Who Warns He’ll Be Watching ‘All the Spending’
John Reitmeyer | Budget
Extensive line-item vetoes expected, but the real surprise may be what the Dems didn’t include: fully funded school aid and relief for depleted Transportation Trust Fund
Panel Temporarily Delays Transfer of Green Acres Tract for Development
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
DEP claims conveyance of 80 acres of protected property has potential to create 1,000 jobs
Mapping New Jersey’s Highest- and Lowest-Rated Nursing Homes
Colleen O'Dea | Maps, Map of the Week
Medicare inspections of nursing-home facilities around the state generally reveal mostly mild problems
Democratic Lawmakers Add Last-Minute Funding for Pet Education Projects
John Mooney | Education
Nearly $40 million in spending tacked onto proposed state budget sent to Gov. Christie
Healthcare Advocates in NJ Cheer High Court’s Ruling Upholding ACA Subsidies
Andrew Kitchenman | Healthcare
Analysts say improvements needed in national health insurance law could be addressed at state level

June 25, 2015

Christie To Announce Tuesday That He's Running For President
Matt Katz | Katz on Christie
Feds Chastise Christie Administration for Ignoring Its Own Rules in Newark
John Mooney | Education
Letter from U.S. Department of Education takes state to task for not delivering on promises to almost half of schools in largest district in New Jersey
Is It Camden or ‘Communist China’? City’s Paramedic Turf Wars Get Ugly
Andrew Kitchenman | Healthcare
Lourdes Health Systems says it may have to shut doors if Cooper-friendly legislation goes through
Reaction to Dems’ Proposal Hints at Possible Area of Compromise on Pensions
John Reitmeyer | Budget
Some GOP lawmakers react favorably to idea of making quarterly payments as show of ‘good faith’ and to take advantage of investment returns
Lifting Cap on Net Metering Should Help Spur Solar Investments in Garden State
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Incentive lets residents and small businesses sell back solar-generated electricity they don’t use, defraying costs and making renewable energy a better buy
Advocates Urge State Lawmakers to Restore Transit Funding to Budget
Jon Hurdle | Transportation
But some legislators argue the clock has run out and there’s not time left to add the $60 million back into spending plan
Poll: Have Your Say on Christie’s, Democrats’ Competing Budget Plans
Are you in the 'blue' corner or the 'red?' Or are you one of those folks who thinks it doesn’t matter?
Op-Ed: Christie Breaks the Law (Again) to Overfund State’s Charter Schools
Darcie Cimarusti | Opinion
In ignoring state mandates, governor acts like he’s above the law, deprives public schools of much-needed resources

June 24, 2015

The Reality of Cerf’s Return Starts to Dawn on Newark’s Politicos, Teachers
John Mooney | Education
Former schools commissioner -- and Anderson’s mentor -- may be in for a rocky reentry as some concerns, challenges are raised
Dems’ Budget Bills Move Forward, Setting Stage for Clash with GOP, Christie
John Reitmeyer | Budget
Tax hikes for wealthy and corporations, increased pension funding are likely to win approval – then head to Christie’s desk for probable veto
Big Issues Await State’s New Insurance, Health and Human Services Leaders
Andrew Kitchenman | Healthcare
Decision on ending hospital sale, possible cuts in charity funding, and looming ruling on ACA subsidies among potential challenges
Legislators Want to Chop Another $20 Million from Clean Energy Fund
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Proposed cuts would be in addition to some $152 million already on the block in Christie’s budget
Newark ‘Newshound’ Taps Into Her Roots With Online Journalism in Native City
Paula Saha | Profiles
With ‘Brick City Live,’ Andaiye Taylor runs a website that trains an insider’s eye on city’s problems -- and its power couples
Palisades Deal Clears Way for Office Building While Safeguarding Scenic Views
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
LG Electronics sharply scales back original plans, opting for 70-foot building rather than 140-foot spire
Op-Ed: Father’s Day Reflections from the Father of a Charter-School Child
Altorice Frazier | Opinion
For the vast majority of parents, public charter schools have become mainstream and the needed solution.

June 23, 2015

Democratic Budget Plan Likely to Raise Christie’s Ire -- and Veto Pen
John Reitmeyer | Budget
Sweeney and Dems build a budget that boosts funding for pension payments and adds money for education and family planning
Anderson’s Departure from Newark Schools Marks End of Tumultuous Period
John Mooney | Education
Hespe announces that his predecessor, Chris Cerf, will pilot stormy district – with local control next goal
Explainer: Nailing Down the Definition of Natural-Resource Damages
Tom Johnson | Explainer
The proposed Exxon Mobil settlement has made this term part of the conversation
With Pope's Encyclical on Environment, Let's Reflect on Garden State
R. William Potter | Opinion
Reviewing NJ’s progress with solar and wind reveals a troubling lack of progress and a renewable-energy sector that could be in serious trouble
Bills Would Restore Funding Christie Slashed in 2010 for Family Planning Clinics
Andrew Kitchenman | Healthcare
Advocates and legislators call governor’s concerns ideological, not budgetary as he claimed
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