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Voices from NJ Spotlight

Did you catch these quotes last week? Here’s an opportunity to get up to speed as a new week gets under way.

New Jersey news last week was largely dominated by Gov. Chris Christie's 2014 budget address. But other subjects yielded telling quotes as well -- such as the number of towns across the Garden State that now issue and recognize "community IDs" for undocumented immigrants. Here's your chance to catch up.

No longer invisible

“Everywhere you go, you need an ID . . . I get rejected a lot, even at the hospital. I went in for an emergency and I didn’t have an ID to show.”

-- Carmen Barbosa, a Costa Rican immigrant, describing her experiences since coming to the United States. Barbosa recently received a community identification card issued by the Latin American Legal Defense and Education Fund, a form of ID now recognized by the Mercer County sheriff and prosecutor and about a half-dozen police departments throughout New Jersey. Read the whole story.

Status quo is good for school aid

“Looks flat here, which I have been conditioned to be grateful for.”

--James Crisfield, superintendent of Millburn schools, after seeing state aid numbers that showed no increase to its $1.9 million package. Read the whole story, and check the interactive see how much aid your district received.

Tax cut jousting during budget address

“I believe New Jerseyans are overtaxed and obviously you do not. I have compromised and offered your plan for tax cuts. You have reneged on your promise to me and the people of New Jersey.”

-- Gov. Chris Christie in his 2014 budget address Tuesday. Christie dressed down Democratic lawmakers for refusing to allow a tax cut last year.

“If he [Christie] wanted a tax cut, he would have put one in the budget . . . He knew he couldn’t pay for it.”

-- Assembly Budget Committee Chairman Vincent Prieto (D-Hudson), dismissing Christie’s budget address accusations.

Read our take on Christie’s budget address and learn how the governor plugged a $3 billion structural deficit.

Governor decides Medicaid expansion is good for NJ

“I will make all my judgments as governor based on what is best for New Jersey.”

-- Gov. Chris Christie in his 2014 budget address Tuesday, when he announced that New Jersey would participate in Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act. Read the whole story.

Who should pay for PSE&G's humongous solar installation?

“Ratepayers are putting up all the money. We’re shelling out the money and we’re paying them a return on it . . . That’s when it becomes really unfair.’’

Stefanie Brand, director of the Division of Rate Counsel. Brand argues that the cost of a nearly $1 billion proposal to develop solar energy should be borne by shareholders, not ratepayers. Read the whole story.

Paula Saha is NJ Spotlight's director of community engagement and social media.

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