NJ Spotlight’s Top Coverage of 2016
Ever wonder what our readers and members were paying attention to in the past year? Here’s a look at the Top 10 stories and subjects
Heavy traffic is a holiday tradition — along with gridlock and tension headaches — something to be avoided if at all possible. But here at NJ Spotlight, we look forward to traffic year-round — the heavier, the better. As usual, our readers didn’t let us down.
1. Election Coverage
NJ Spotlight’swas one of the top stories of the year, and our real-time results map on election night always gets a lot of attention — on our site and on sites run by our local and statewide content partners, who also use the information.
We also saw significant traffic on John Reitmeyer’s, which addressed what would happen to revenues from the recently hiked gas-tax funds.
2. Water Quality
NJ Spotlight’sattracted big audiences, particularly a pair of stories about chemicals found in state water supplies — (perfluorooctanic acid) and .
A collaboration with WNYC Public Radio led to a piece on, where phenomenal growth has resulted in a boomtown but also strained its outdated infrastructure and led to severe financial deficits in the schools.
4. Lead Poisoning
Lead in the water was a big national story, and New Jersey had its own scare when it came to light that 30 schools in Newark were grappling with the issue. But a map published in March showed thatin New Jersey with water that is unsafe to drink due to high levels of the heavy metal.
5. Student Loans
An investigation by ProPublica exposed theof a New Jersey student loan program, and readers took major interest in our coverage of the on the issue.
6. American Dream Megamall
Our collaboration this month with WNYC News and Bloomberg Businessweek on thein the Meadowlands dug deep into the troubled project, a multicolored behemoth off the Turnpike that could end up being the most expensive building ever built in the Garden State.
7. Pensions: The $100K Club
An NJ Spotlight analysis found that the ranks ofwho collect more than $100,000 a year from New Jersey pensions have more than doubled in the past five years.
A big story in 2015,continued to capture attention this year, as the state went public with the results of the first year of online evaluations.
9. President-Elect Trump
At the end of the week of a historic presidential election, NJ Spotlightto how President-elect Donald Trump might affect New Jersey’s policies and programs.
10. Meadowlands Hospital Medical Center
A series of articles investigating Meadowlands Hospital Medical Center began with a story about, a company based in the medical center that advertised online to Russian citizens, encouraging pregnant women to come to the Secaucus facility to give birth. Doing so makes the baby automatically eligible for U.S. citizenship and connects the hospital to a growing and relatively unknown international phenomenon known as “birth tourism.”