Morning News Digest: Thursday, November 13, 2008

Environmentalists blast Corzine on open-space funding

Environmental activists said yesterday Gov. Jon Corzine is emerging as the worst governor for preserving open space since saving land from development became an issue in the 1970s. (Tom Hester, The Star-Ledger)

Tax shortfall swells to $5B

TRENTON — The struggling economy has left a projected $1.2 billion shortfall in the state's budget this year, and the gap could grow to a $5 billion deficit next year, Gov. Jon S. Corzine's administration announced Wednesday. (Gannett)

$75M in homeland security grants going to Jersey

New Jersey will receive more than $75 million in homeland security grants from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Sens. Frank R. Lautenberg and Robert Menendez announced yesterday. (The Jersey Journal)

Seeking more 'wiggle room' under local tax cap

New Jersey's 4 percent cap on property tax bills should be raised to make room for a $57 million jump in the bills that local governments face for police and firefighter pensions, the head of New Jersey's League of Municipalities told a state finance board yesterday. (Dunstan McNichol, The Star-Ledger)

Lipski gets slap in the facebook

Since his arrest Friday on charges he urinated on fellow concert-goers at a D.C. nightclub, there's been no shortage of publicity for Jersey City Councilman Steven Lipski. (Charles Hack, The Jersey Journal)

Prosecutor: Bryant sold the power of his office

After nine weeks of testimony, thousands of pages of documents and several dozen witnesses, the prosecutor in the federal corruption case against former state Sen. Wayne Bryant summed it up yesterday as a very "simple" and blatant case of bribery and fraud.(Susan K. Livio, The Star-Ledger)

Both parties look to '09 Assembly campaigns

All eighty seats in the New Jersey General Assembly are up next year, with Democrats in strong shape to keep their majority under a legislative map that creates relatively few competitive races. (

Murphy plans another run for Congress

Former Tabernacle Committeeman Justin Murphy said today that he’s probably going to run for the Republican nomination in the 3rd Congressional District again in 2010. (

New Jersey Right to Life endorses Doherty

So far, Assemblyman Mike Doherty (R-Washington) is the only announced candidate to succeed Congressman-elect Leonard Lance (R-Flemington) in the state Senate. But he’s already won the endorsement of the state’s major pro-life organization, New Jersey Right to Life. (

Hudson went for Obama

Barack Obama racked up victories in all 12 Hudson County municipalities Tuesday, including an eye-popping 65-percentage point win in Jersey City. (The Jersey Journal)

Paterson bishop leading anti-abortion charge

Roman Catholic church leaders meeting this week in Baltimore heralded the election of the first black president, but maintained forceful opposition to President-elect Barack Obama's pro-choice stance. (Sarah Schillaci, The Bergen Record)

South Harrison election winner gets call to resign

SOUTH HARRISON — A man elected to township committee earlier this month should not take office because he allegedly threatened a local police officer, critics said Wednesday night. (Jim Walsh, The Courier-Post)

Freeholders OK $23M in Morris Preservation Trust projects

Two properties once targeted for housing developments are among 21 projects approved for funding Wednesday by the Morris County Preservation Trust. (Michael Daigle, The Daily Record)

Yet another mayor takes office

After saying he planned to stay in office all day, Evans was ousted when Mayor-elect Lorenzo Langford held a private swearing-in ceremony at 12:45 p.m. (Associated Press)

Economic crisis shakes Ivy walls

PRINCETON BOROUGH — The shaky economy has prompted Princeton University to re-examine its long-term spending plans, including the timing and scope of several construction initiatives. Less money may be spent on raises, the school said. (Lisa Rich, Trenton Times)

8 hope to fill empty school board seat

ROBBINSVILLE — A month after Joseph Armenti resigned from the Robbinsville Board of Education for making a controversial comment, eight individuals are vying for his former seat. (Carmen Cusido, Trenton Times)

Seaside Park councilwoman resigns, cites 'vicious politics'

SEASIDE PARK — Councilwoman Sharon Pratico Bucci, saying politics here have become "so personal and so vicious," announced her resignation Wednesday night. (Chelsea Michaels, Asbury Park Press)

Morning News Digest: Thursday, November 13, 2008