Faced with an unexpected Court Order yesterday requiring a pension payment of $1.57 billion by the end of June and with a national media glare upon him, Governor Chris Christie will deliver his Annual Budget Address to a joint session of the New Jersey Legislature this afternoon at 2 p.m.
You can watch the address here live, courtesy of NJTV and Youtube:
Well, that didn’t take long. Assemblywoman Mary Pat Angelini on Wednesday said she’ll introduce legislation that bans adult incest in New Jersey — a response to a flurry of media reports in the last week that noted sexual relationships between consenting, closely related adults is legal here. “Obviously, these types of relationships violate our acceptable moral… Read the rest of this entry »
Politicians like to talk about budgetary issues and challenges in pieces -ignoring the big-picture, and inconvenient, collateral effects of their proposed solutions. Even the public, and well-meaning editorial boards, fall prey to this segmentation mentality hoping there is an answer that doesn’t eviscerate their particular sacred cow. Throw in the fact that there is a general belief in a magic bullet that will fix our budget problems and you have a dangerous mix of ignorance and irrational expectation. It is time to clear that up. Governor Christie is right when he says our budget problems are serious. The solutions are going to be painful.
First, let’s understand that the causes of the problem are rooted in the actions, over the last 20 years, of legislators and governors – Republicans and Democrats – who were either well-meaning, but ultimately ill-informed, or those who consciously opted for political expediency knowing their actions would ultimately bankrupt the state. The former motivation is sad, the latter reprehensible.
Making certain assumptions about things we can and can’t fund, our structural deficit is around $6.75 billion – inclusive of $1.6 billion in transportation investment per year but exclusive of things we’d love to do like cut property taxes.
A bill fast-tracking sale of public water systems into private hands was approved by the state Senate Thursday, and will now head to the governor’s desk. About an hour of debate preceded the vote on the Water Infrastructure Protection Act, which was approved 21-16 and would allow local governments to sell public water systems without a… Read the rest of this entry »
TRENTON — State lawmakers would study whether police throughout the state should wear body cameras to capture their interactions with the public, under a bill approved today by the Senate. The legislation ( S2649), passed 37-0, began as an effort to require all officers to wear the devices, but was scaled back after the bill’ sponsor,… Read the rest of this entry »
TRENTON — New Jersey lawmakers today took the first step toward regulating new and growing “ridesharing” services like Uber and Lyft that have drawn the ire of traditional taxi and limo companies as well as the auto insurance industry. The Assembly Transportation Committee wrapped seven bills that have been introduced over the last six months —… Read the rest of this entry »
“Water Infrastructure Protection Act”, sponsored by Senator Joe Kyrillos and Assemblyman Sean Kean, would allow municipalities or their utility authorities to sell or lease water and sewer systems to private entities without a referendum in cases of defined emergencies.
Assemblywoman Linder Stender (D-Union). A bill that would allow distressed water-supply facilities and wastewater treatment plants owned by municipalities to be more rapidly sold or leased to private entities narrowly passed a legislative committee yesterday. The legislation (A-3628) sparked heated discussion yesterday before the Assembly State and Local Government Committee, with proponents saying it would allow… Read the rest of this entry »
TRENTON — The key state Senate committee today approved a bill requiring Gov. Chris Christie’s administration to restore information about property taxes that it had removed from a state website earlier this year. The bill ( S2056), which cleared the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee, would require that the administration post the town-by-town average residential property… Read the rest of this entry »
School nurses and other trained personnel would be authorized to administer epinephrine to any student having an anaphylactic reaction under legislation sponsored by Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande (R-11).
Casagrande’s bill, A-304 was passed in the Assembly, 73-0, on May 22 and was approved by the Senate Education Committee unanimously this morning. If approved by the full Senate, the bill will go to Governor Chris Christie whose signature will make it law.
“As many as two children in every classroom have at least one food allergy,” said Casagrande, R – Monmouth. “Schools should be able to respond quickly and appropriately to help children with a serious allergic reaction.”
Recent studies suggest that one in 13 children are affected by food allergies. More than 15 percent of school aged children with food allergies have had a reaction at school.
TRENTON — National Geographic Traveler’s annual photo contest is open until June 30, but don’t submit that gorgeous Shore picture just yet. According to the rules, the contest bans entries from Iran, North Korea, Sudan, Cuba, Syria — and New…