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NJ Spotlight Daily News

July 12, 2017

NJ’s South Korean Community Disturbed by North’s Missile Launch
NJTV News Online | Politics
At roundtable with Rep. Pascrell, some attendees wish President Trump would do more to condemn North Korea’s actions

July 11, 2017

Christie’s Summer Surprise: Move Mental Health Services to Different Division
Lilo H. Stainton | Healthcare
Shift from Human Services to Health department would involve 200 staff, nearly $1 billion
American Dream Wakes Up: Financing in Place, Megamall Gets Busy Building
John Reitmeyer | Planning
With almost $3 billion in place, backers and critics alike hope the long-stalled entertainment complex will start to deliver on some of the 23,000 expected construction jobs
NJ Solar Sector Could Be in for Overhaul, with Solar Credits on Way out
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Another attempt to smooth out industry’s boom-and-bust cycles, this one by ultimately phasing out solar subsidies paid to array owners
Opinion: Cleaning up Urban Waters — Focus Where the People Are
Daniel J. Van Abs | Opinion
We need to focus discretionary expenditures where they will do the most good for residents and competitiveness
Gov. Chris Christie Auditions for New Gig: Sports Radio Host
Mara Silvers | WNYC News | Politics
Christie's infamous thin skin and impatience with those who disagree may not suit him to the airwaves
After Penn Station Repairs, Gateway Tunnel Is Next Worry
NJTV News Online | Transportation
Transit expert says sword of Damocles hangs over region because construction of Gateway tunnels is so far off
First Day of Commuter Hell Wasn’t So Bad After All
NJTV News Online | Transportation
NJ Transit riders say start of the summer-long disruption to their commute could have been worse
Sweeney, Prieto Want State Workers Paid for Forced Holiday
WBGO News | Politics
Both are going to the Legislature this week to make sure bipartisan bill is in place if Christie demurs

July 10, 2017

Getting a Read on $125 million Library Bond Ballot Question
John Reitmeyer | Politics
Advocates argue that Garden State libraries need to catch up on technologies like the Internet, but opponents claim the state is ‘already drowning in debt’
NJ Seeks to Ban Pesticide Given Clean Bill of Health by EPA
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Chlorpyrifos can potentially cause developmental damage to children, vomiting and dizziness in adults
Money Still Makes Biggest Difference to Kids’ Wellbeing in NJ
Colleen O'Dea | Social
But even wealthiest counties can improve in some ways while the poorest do surprisingly well in some aspects of education, health, and safety
Is Hospital ER Weak Link in State’s Prescription Monitoring Program?
Lilo H. Stainton | Healthcare
Doctors in emergency room don’t have to check statewide prescription database before they write scrip for opiates
Op-Ed: Don’t Play Politics with the Garden State’s Parks
Eric Stiles | Opinion
Our public lands should not be held hostage to state budget negotiations

July 7, 2017

State Regulations Decrease Opiate Prescriptions Nationwide, CDC Finds
Lilo H. Stainton | Healthcare
But too many patients still taking dangerously high levels of addictive drugs
State Looks to Private Partners for Help Rebuilding Energy Infrastructure
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
With government coffers depleted, state considers public-private partnerships as a way to help finance local and state projects
On the Menu for this New Jersey Barbecue: Politics
Nancy Solomon | WNYC News | Politics
In this era of heated rhetoric and divisions, can residents even find common ground?
Most Voter Data Requested by Trump Administration Already Public in New Jersey
Colleen O'Dea | Politics
Despite availability of information, federal and state officials, civil rights organizations argue NJ should not comply with request
New Jersey’s Economic Outlook for 2018 Is So-So, Accountants Say
John Reitmeyer | More Issues
CPAs are worried about election-year uncertainties, property taxes, the state’s credit rating, budget problems, and federal healthcare changes

July 6, 2017

State Board Prepares to Cede Local Control to Jersey City Schools
John Mooney | Education
Former Gov. Kean, who presided over takeover, quantifies modest success as ‘biggest disappointment’ of his administration
State Starts to Think Seriously About Deploying Microgrids
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Trenton’s downtown thermal-energy district funded to determine if microgrids can deliver power and other vital services when power grid goes down
Budget Debate Delays Potential Out-of-Network Insurance Reform
Lilo H. Stainton | Healthcare
Stakeholders, lawmakers, and even critics agree that taming surprise medical charges is a critical issue for healthcare sector to address successfully
Gov Touts Lottery as Answer to NJ’s Pension Problems, but Critics Deride Plan
John Reitmeyer | Budget, Politics
A wise policy change? That depends on how the Lottery performs over the next 30 years
Opinion: Christie Gets Badly Burned by Clueless Moment of Sun and Fun
Carl Golden | Opinion
Once the photo of the governor lounging in his beach chair went viral, he couldn’t bully or bluff his way out of what the world saw — hubris on a grand scale

July 5, 2017

Despite Budget Drama and Deadlock, School Funding Changes Survive
John Mooney | Education
Budget as signed represents first move in almost a decade to follow the state’s school-funding formula
Explainer: The Horizon Law that Helped Trigger a State Shutdown, up Close
Lilo H. Stainton | Explainer
The law as enacted helps protect Horizon policyholders, a key element missing in earlier versions
BPU Rules Encourage Utility Infrastructure Investments, Speed Rate Increases
Tom Johnson | Energy & Environment
Consumer advocates argue regulations may undercut ratepayer protections, are unnecessary under current system
The List: Think Murphy’s a Big Spender? He’s Been Outspent Handily in the Past
Colleen O'Dea | The List
$60 million here, $50 million there: Which candidates opened their wallets widest in their not-always-successful pursuit of office?

July 4, 2017

With Budget Signing, State is Back in Business — Just in Time for the 4th
John Reitmeyer and Lilo H. Stainton | Budget, Politics
Legislative triple play — budget, Horizon bill, and Lottery transfer — break the logjam that brought all but essential services to a standstill across state

July 3, 2017

Budget Deadlock Stretches into Day 3, Thousands of State Workers Idled
John Reitmeyer | Budget, Politics
Governor has summoned lawmakers back to Trenton for morning meeting; Prieto and Horizon CEO agree to try to talk through differences
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