Wake-Up Call: Friday, July 25, 2008

With the PolitickerNJ.com Wake-Up Call e-mailed to your inbox, phone, Blackberry or PDA first thing in the morning, you can get a rundown of New Jersey's top political headlines. Sign up to get the Wake-Up Call delivered every morning.

Cohen under investigation for child pornography

Multiple sources say that Democratic Assemblyman Neil Cohen is under investigation by state authorities over allegations that he had child pornography on his legislative office computer. (PolitickerNJ)

Cohen turned in by fellow legislators

The child pornography investigation of Assemblyman Neil Cohen was touched off by his legislative running mates, the two legislators revealed this evening. (PolitickerNJ)


Staffers make discovery on Cohen's computer

A veteran New Jersey assemblyman is being investigated after child pornography was found on his computer, officials said yesterday. (Associated Press)


Legislator focus of child porn probe

TRENTON, N.J. — Authorities are investigating whether a veteran state lawmaker possessed child pornography on his office computer, two assemblymen who share an office with him said Thursday. (Associated Press)


Former Atlantic City mayor to be sentenced today

Former Atlantic City Mayor Robert Levy had what many might consider an exemplary 20-year military career that two tours of duty and a Bronze Star, but today his is to be sentenced in federal court for embellishing that record to collect veterans' benefits to which he was not entitled. (Rudy Larini, The Star-Ledger)


Corzine is homeward bound

REHOVOT, Israel — The trip ended just like it started at a sprint.

Gov. Jon Corzine's five-day trade mission to Israel wrapped up yesterday with a flurry of tours, meetings and a test-drive so quick he never left the parking lot. The final day's hectic schedule only continued the pace of a trip that had the governor rushing from the holy sites of Jerusalem to the edge of the Gaza border to the buzzing hub of Tel Aviv. (Claire Heininger, The Star-Ledger)


Climate change could cost New Jersey millions

New Jersey is facing losses of tens of billions of dollars over the next few decades from the effects of climate change, according to a 17-page report an independent research group released today. (Amy Ellis Nutt, The Star-Ledger)


Voters on the fence over Senate race

TRENTON – Incumbent Democrat Frank Lautenberg leads his Republican opponent as he seeks reelection to the U.S. Senate, but many voters remain uncommitted, a new poll has found. (Associated Press)


State loses attempt to toss out female inmates' rights lawsuit

A judge yesterday denied the state's request to throw out a lawsuit by female inmates who allege they are held in "lock-down condi tions" at New Jersey's maximum- security prison, finding the claim, "if later found to be true, consti tutes cruel and unusual punishment." (Rick Hepp, The Star-Ledger)


Battle brewing in the Third District

There have been a few extra out-of-towners wandering in New Jersey this summer: political leaders intent on helping their party win the Third Congressional District race. (Cynthia Burton, Philadelphia Inquirer)


Cohen under investigation

Deputy Assembly Speaker Neil Cohen is being investigated for alleged possession of child pornography, according to two of his Democratic colleagues, who said they brought the matter to the attention of law enforcement. (Josh Margolin and Robert Schwaneberg, The Star-Ledger)


Yo-yo ball crackdown continues

Six months after Gov. Jon Corzine signed legislation banning the sale of water yo-yo balls, the state has started to crack down on merchants who continue to sell the toys.

David Szuchman, director of the Division of Consumer Affairs, announced yesterday that merchants could face up to $10,000 in fines for selling the water yo-yo ball, and up to $20,000 in fines for repeat offenses. The toys pose a strangulation risk to children. (Mariam Jukaku, The Star-Ledger)


State appointee's support for James raises eyebrows

TRENTON — One of the dozens of letters sent to the federal judge sentencing Sharpe James, a former Newark mayor and state senator, on federal corruption charges came from a member of the State Parole Board who has questionable qualifications for the job. (Gregory J. Volpe, Gannett)


New Jersey delegation supports bridge bill

WASHINGTON — The House passed a bridge bill this afternoon by a lopsided margin of 367-55, with near-unanimous support from the New Jersey delegation. (Raju Chebium, Gannett)


Camden residents afraid of eminent domain

Camden officials sent a letter this week to 1,300 property owners in a new redevelopment zone, saying they had to keep pace with the latest court ruling on the controversial practice of eminent domain. (Matt Katz, Philadelphia Inquirer)


Nine lawyers reprimanded by Supreme Court

The New Jersey Supreme Court has reprimanded nine lawyers who worked at the Tomar law firm, bringing an end to years-old misconduct claims against the now-defunct group. (Adam Smeltz, The Courier-Post)


Department of Defense considering a New Jersey base

BURLINGTON COUNTY — The Department of Defense is funding a $300,000 land use study designed to facilitate the establishment of a new "megabase" planned in Burlington County. (The Trenton Times)


Bergen merchant briefs McCain on gas prices

A gas station owner from Ridgefield Park joined John McCain’s top economic adviser on a telephone briefing today to stress the need for action to reduce high gas prices. (John Reitmeyer, The Bergen Record)


Future of Highlands sits with Corzine

The future of a plan for preserv ing and developing a huge swath of northern New Jersey is now in the hands of Gov. Jon Corzine. (Paula Saha, The Star-Ledger)


Lance winning among retired donors

While Assemblywoman Linda Stender (D-Union) has a nearly 15-to-1 lead over Sen. Leonard Lance (R-Hunterdon) when it comes to available cash for the 7th Congressional District race, it appears that at least among one group, retired Jerseyans, the donations are fairly evenly split. (The Star-Ledger)


Mayor asked to resign in face of budget crisis

CHERRY HILL — Mayor Bernie Platt asked Cherry Hill residents "to think outside the box" in suggesting how to cut township expenses. (Adam Smeltz, The Courier-Post)


Legislators push for storm plan updates

Three storms into the 2008 hurricane season, two South Jersey legislators are pushing for revisions to existing evacuation plans for residents and vacationers in towns at and near the shore. (Lucas K. Murray, Gloucester County Times)


Cohen's computer confiscated

A prominent New Jersey lawmaker is being investigated for possession of child pornography after the Attorney General’s office seized a state-issued computer from his legislative office, six sources confirmed Thursday. (John P. McAlpin, The Star-Ledger)


Upper Deerfield Mayor dies

UPPER DEERFIELD TWP. – Mayor Ralph Cocove served the public until the very end.

Cocove, who served on the Upper Deerfield Township committee for almost a quarter of a century, passed away Thursday morning surrounded by family at his home on Old Deerfield Pike after a long battle with colon cancer. (Matt Dunn, Bridgeton News)


Council plan goes to governor

The New Jersey Highlands Council on Thursday approved the minutes of last week's meeting at which it adopted a plan that seeks to limit development in much of the 860,000-acre region that includes much of Morris County. But that plan cannot take effect until Gov. Jon Corzine gives the OK, either explicitly or by not vetoing the minutes of the meeting. (Colleen O'Dea, The Daily Record)


Budget eliminates paper calendar

TRENTON — New Jersey's budget crunch is so bad that it's even wiped out 2009 — at least on pape The state has told employees they won't be getting paper calendars for next year. (Associated Press)


With the PolitickerNJ.com Wake-Up Call e-mailed to your inbox, phone, Blackberry or PDA first thing in the morning, you can get a rundown of New Jersey's top political headlines. Sign up to get the Wake-Up Call delivered every morning. Wake-Up Call: Friday, July 25, 2008