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NJ Spotlight Daily News

July 13, 2016

Introducing Capital Perk: On-the-Mark Video Conversations With NJ Leaders
John Mooney | Video, Capital Perk
In this inaugural segment, Senate President Sweeney opens up about why -- and how -- he got involved in politics. Hint: He got in on the ground floor
New Jersey Starts Collecting More Tax Upfront from Lottery Winners
John Reitmeyer | Budget
Change in income-tax withholding rules could help state finances at least a little bit
Rowan Student Creates First Free, Online Course on Osteopathic Medicine
Lilo H. Stainton | Healthcare
Designed to introduce the practice to doctors, medical students, and other interested parties, first course draws 1,200 virtual attendees to doctors, medical students, and other interested parties, first course draws 1,200 virtual attendees
Verizon Customers in South Jersey Finally Get Hearings to Air Gripes
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Longstanding complaints contend that company’s traditional phone network is plagued by outages and not fast enough for high-speed Internet service
Agenda: Lead Testing Gets Regulatory Fast Track
John Mooney | Education
State board to move on several state initiatives, including Abigail’s Law
Opinion: Christie’s Pitching New Jersey Issues to National Audience
Carl Golden | Opinion
Taking a tough stand on the TTF and public-employee healthcare benefits paints him as a no-nonsense governor ready to do battle with special interests
Taking the Pulse of Obamacare in NJ, Six Years On
WNYC Public Radio | Healthcare
The Affordable Care Act has brought health coverage to thousands New Jerseyans, but can it remain affordable?
The ‘Hamilton’ Craze Keeps Drawing Visitors to New Jersey
NJTV News Online | More Issues
Historian says the musical has ‘done a great service in making people think and talk and ask’
Eight Hundred Workers Idled by Transportation Trust Fund Stalemate
WNYC Public Radio | Transportation
Number could more than double by end of week, during what should be peak employment period for construction workers

July 12, 2016

Senator Creates Task Force to Keep NJ Utilities Out of a ‘Death Spiral’
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Decoupling volume sales from profits may be the only out in a world where energy efficiency and alternative sources of power are becoming order of day
Sweeney Calls State House Summit on School-Funding Plan, But Where is NJEA?
John Mooney | Education
Christie cancels suburban town hall meeting on his school-funding scheme to be at Trump’s side
Sweeney Willing to Bend if Christie Will Compromise on Transportation Funding
John Reitmeyer | Politics, Transportation
Senate president warns that if agreement on TTF can’t be reached before national political conventions begin, deadlock will extend through summer
State Appeals Court Sides with Towns Over Affordable Housing ‘Gap Period’
Colleen O'Dea | Housing
Ruling could halve number of housing units for people with low and moderate incomes
Critics of Highlands Development Plan Step Up Attacks on DEP
Jon Hurdle | Energy & Environment
Proposal would quadruple number of septic systems in forested areas of region, which serves as water supply for some 5 million people
Feds Help NJ's Zika Campaign, but Christie Vetoes $5M for Similar Effort
Lilo H. Stainton | Healthcare
CDC’s $424,000 to go to state’s aggressive public awareness campaign, testing, and coordinating initiatives with local partners

July 11, 2016

Democratic Leaders Call for Follow-up Audit of Disabled People Living in Group Homes
Lilo H. Stainton | Healthcare
OLS review reveals problems with patient care, record keeping, and problem resolution
Environmentalists Challenge Grid Operator’s New ‘Reliability’ Regulation
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Opponents argue rule will drive up prices to consumers and encourage the use of fossil fuels to detriment of clean-energy alternatives
At NJ Spotlight Roundtable, Competing Visions of How to Fix Public-Pension System
John Reitmeyer | Budget
Heated discussion leaves little room for common ground; former governor says situation may need federal intervention
The List: 10 Most Common Languages of NJ’s Polyglot Student Population
Colleen O'Dea | The List
Spanish is the undisputed leader, but kids in New Jersey’s schools speak everything from Arabic to Portuguese and Chinese to Telugu
Op-Ed: Christie’s ‘Fairness Formula’ Versus Sweeney’s ‘Formula 4 Success’
Paul Tractenberg | Opinion
Both schemes highlight deep problems with New Jersey’s school-funding system, but neither is the right solution

July 8, 2016

In Union County, a Surprising Response to Sweeney’s School-Funding Plan
John Mooney | Education
Mayors and superintendents talk ‘accountability,’ one of the hot-buttons of Christie’s competing school-funding scheme
Interactive Map: A Guide to New Jersey’s Bad Air Days
Colleen O'Dea | Maps, Map of the Week
State suffers from unhealthy levels of ozone, American Lung Association reports, but air quality overall is slowly improving
Next Frontier for Regional Planning: The Ocean off Mid-Atlantic States
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
State and federal agencies, Native American tribes, join together to plan for effective sharing and management of ocean resources
$1.6 Billion Doubt Shadows Christie’s Sales-Tax Plan
John Reitmeyer | Budget
As worries about blowing a hole in the state budget persist, governor’s sales-tax scheme finds few new supporters
Outbreak in the Past, Rutgers Still on Alert for Meningitis
Lilo H. Stainton | Healthcare
Part of prevention plan: all students must get vaccinated before arriving on campus in the fall
Op-Ed: Post the Flood Hazard Area Control Act Rules Resolution
John F. McKeon | Opinion
The DEP’s proposed rule changes will lead to the piecemeal destruction of vegetation that serves as a natural buffer against flooding
NJ Transit’s Infrastructure -- Especially Its Hudson Tunnel -- Shows Its Age
WNYC Public Radio | Transportation
An agency beset by budget gaps, major stoppages, low morale, and a crumbling tunnel
Judge Rules Christie’s Phone Out of Bounds for Bridgegate Defendants
NJTV News Online | Politics
Baroni and Kelly denied access to governor’s mysterious cellphone

July 7, 2016

With TTF Tapped Out, Christie Issues List of Transportation Projects to Be Put on Hold
John Reitmeyer | Transportation
Shutdowns expected in all 21 counties. Administration restricts funds for projects that protect ‘health, safety, and welfare’
State’s High Court Lays Down New Law on Liability for Toxic Exposure
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
In unanimous decision, court rules that liability under certain circumstances may extend beyond worker’s spouse
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