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NJ Spotlight Daily News

September 25, 2015

Port Authority Reform: Dems Say, ‘Take It Slow,’ GOP Argues ‘Pick up the Pace’
John Reitmeyer | Politics, Transportation
Legislators must decide whether to craft a comprehensive bill or push ahead with something that will be agreeable to Christie and Cuomo
Proposed DEP Rule Changes Still Catching Flak, This Time from Lawmakers
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
If new resolution garners simple majority in Assembly and Senate, state environmental agency could be forced to withdraw proposed regulations
When ‘Oprah’ and the Nation Turned Their Eyes to Newark’s Public Schools
John Mooney | Education
Book looks at what happened to $100M gift from Facebook founder – and reform efforts it inspired
Interactive Map: NJ Lottery Ticket Sales Set Record, But Profits Fall Short
Colleen O'Dea | Maps, Map of the Week
New contractor misses revenue target by $100M, raising concerns and prompting calls for investigations
Bergen County Program Seeks to Broaden Approach to Behavioral Health
Andrew Kitchenman | Healthcare
Integrative medicine melds psychiatry, exercise, diet, alternative therapies
PennEast Files with FERC to Move Ahead on 118-Mile Natural-Gas Pipeline
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Opponents argue that proposed pipeline route crosses thousands of acres of open space and farmland, preserved with taxpayer dollars

September 24, 2015

Feds Say NJ Offshore Wind Leases to Go Up for Sale Starting in November
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Leases are just one piece of offshore puzzle; critical financing mechanism to pay for wind power is still missing
Panel Mapping Out Path to Local Control of Schools Draws Crowd in Newark
John Mooney | Education
About 100 gathered for first public meeting warned that task ahead will be difficult – but are assured that it will get done
Lower Returns on State’s Pension Investments Raise Questions, Concerns
John Reitmeyer | Budget
Officials say 4 percent gain is still better than most similar plans, but state workers worry about impact on severely underfunded system
DEP Declares Drought Watch in 12 Counties; Urges Consumers to Cut Water Use
Jon Hurdle | Energy & Environment
State agency warns that if dry spell continues tougher measures to ensure adequate supplies could be put in place
Poll: Pass or Fail -- Should New Jersey Expand Pre-Kindergarten Availability?
Is it time to offer public preschool to children and families in districts statewide?
Jersey City Joins Small Group of Cities That Cover Workers’ Gender Changes
Andrew Kitchenman | Healthcare
Mayor says he hopes decision will lead to others municipalities adding similar coverage; move hailed by advocates
Op-Ed: Ill-Advised Executive Order by Ex-Governor Has Left NJ Flying ‘Legally Blind’
Andrew Sidamon-Eristoff | Opinion
Concentrating authority with Department of Law and Public Safety drags down state government’s efficiency

September 23, 2015

FEMA Weighs In on Proposed DEP Rule Changes, Warning of Potential Flood Hazards
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
U.S agency joins others in criticizing DEP plans, points to problem spots that could be in violation of federal flood-insurance program
Sayreville Schools Chief Who Canceled Grid Season Speaks Out on Controversy
John Mooney | Education
During conference on hazing, Richard Labbe delivers first extensive public recounting of his decisions -- and the fallout
Insurer Seeks to Extinguish Firestorm Over Proposed Tiered Health Coverage
Andrew Kitchenman | Healthcare
Hudson County leaders fear hospitals in Horizon’s second tier may be forced out of business, call for delaying launch of new plan
NJ’s Minimum-Wage Workers Won’t Be Getting Automatic Increase This Year
John Reitmeyer | More Issues
As inflation rate stays put, freeze takes effect – pleasing business owners, vexing advocates who say $8.38 per hour is woefully inadequate
Profile: Doctor Shows Students at Rutgers How to Learn from One Another
Andrew Kitchenman | Profiles
Denise Rodgers heads programs that bring together professionals from different disciplines, aims to improve healthcare in Newark
Christie Names Chief of State’s Watchdog Agency to Fill Comptroller Post
John Reitmeyer | Politics
Governor’s choice to fill vacancy is son of recently appointed Port Authority chairman
Op-Ed: Committed in Camden to Working Together to Give Kids a Bright Future
Paymon Rouhanifard | Opinion
We’re improving and supporting district schools while also offering parents and students ‘renaissance schools’ option

September 22, 2015

Greater Transparency Urged for Political Donations by Private Pension Managers
John Reitmeyer | Politics
Fund managers who handle billions in state’s assets currently required only to ‘self-report’ contributions
Kindergarten Kids’ Drawings, Numbers Graphically Show Why Pre-K is Key
John Mooney | Education
Veteran kindergarten teacher wows Senate hearing by showing difference in work between those who did -- and didn't -- attend preschool
Environmentalists, Lawmakers Trying New Tack to Keep Out Fracking Waste
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
A new bill would prevent many of the chemicals in fracking wastewater from being treated in state, rather than outlawing the waste itself
Explainer: American Dream Starting to Come True in the Meadowlands?
Lilo H. Stainton | Explainer
With nearly $1 billion in public funding on the way -- making it the largest taxpayer-backed project in state history -- can the former Xanadu overcome its troubled past?
NJ Raises Mandatory Age for Kids to Sit in Safer Rear-Facing Car Seats
Andrew Kitchenman | Healthcare
Requirement now extends to 2-year-olds as state becomes first in nation to follow pediatricians’ advice

September 21, 2015

Autism Conference Highlights Success in Linking Research to Treatments
Andrew Kitchenman | Healthcare
New Jersey, with nation’s highest rate of diagnosed cases, touted as leader and innovator in putting theory into practice
Stockton Sells Showboat to Developer, Reports Former President Misled Trustees
Tara Nurin | More Issues
University will lose money on transaction but will free itself from Atlantic City entanglement
New Jersey Falling Behind Other States In Efforts to Boost Energy Efficiency
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Experts at NJ Spotlight Roundtable agree more needs to be done, but no consensus reached as to best ways to attain that goal
Talk at Summit Hints at Compromise on Gas-Tax Hike If Tradeoffs Can Be Found
John Reitmeyer | Politics
But bipartisan differences still must be resolved, and any bill raising surcharge on gasoline must be signed by Christie, who has taken anti-tax pledge
The List: Entrepreneurs, Legislation Help NJ Catch Craft-Brewery Wave
Tara Nurin | The List
More join Garden State’s burgeoning roster of makers of innovative, interesting beers
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