Morning News Digest: May 11, 2009

N.J. legislators question state grants for defunct interstellar food studies program

For more than five years now, the state has been sending hundreds of thousands of dollars to a small, nonprofit organization with the Star Wars-sounding name, E3CO, whose mission is teaching elementary and high school students about growing food in space. (Sherman and Margolin, Star-Ledger)

Bill targets N.J. No. 2 candidates

TRENTON – New Jersey's aspiring lieutenant governors might have to reveal a host of personal and political information when running for the new post. (Segall, AP)

N.J. pay-to-play limits chafe on some

A sweeping pay-to-play ban that curtails the ability of candidates to raise money – effectively handing an advantage to wealthy politicians who can fund their campaigns – will be tested for the first time in this year's governor's race. (Burton, Inquirer)

Bill mandates disclosures by lieutenant gov. hopefuls

TRENTON — New Jersey's aspiring lieutenant governors might have to reveal a host of personal and political information when running for the new post. (AP)

Lonegan forces fellow Republican gubernatorial candidates to take notice

Those who choose to underestimate Steve Lonegan may want to take a number: They're joining a long list. (O’Brien, Star-Ledger)

State agencies brace for furlough confusion

Getting a new driver’s license, boat registration or some other transaction completed with the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission will be impossible on May 18 and June 15. (Reitmeyer and Fuchs, Record)

Nearby, towns offer a shared services lesson

SWEDESBORO When municipal officials in this borough and surrounding Woolwich Township first presented the plan to share police services last month, it was right around the time when two other New Jersey communities that had split the cost of cops Ð Collingswood and Woodlynne in Camden County Ð were severing their contract. (Murray, Gloucester County Times)

Beach replenishment funds in Obama budget

WASHINGTON — Federal money to replenish New Jersey's beaches has become a point of contention between some state lawmakers and the Obama administration. But it may not amount to much in the end. (Chebium, Gannett)

NJ seeks $2B line of credit to plug budget gap

TRENTON — New Jersey is looking to set up a $2 billion line of credit to plug an expected revenue shortfall. (AP)

Butt out, union tells freeholder

An education labor leader has waged a letter writing campaign urging Camden County officials to stay out of bargaining between local districts and unions representing educators. (Smeltz, Courier-Post)

With Christie engaged in GOP gubernatorial primary, legal brains consider DPAs

MANHATTAN – Days before a House Judiciary Subcommittee launches hearings on the subject, legal experts at an event hosted by New York University’s School of Law considered whether sufficient checks and balances govern the process by which federal U.S. Attorneys select federal monitors to oversee deferred prosecution agreements (DPAs) of corporations. (Pizarro, PolitickerNJ)

Pascrell intensifies DPA reform rhetoric at NYU – not interested in LG job

MANHATTAN – U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-Paterson) straightened the backs of New York’s legal community yesterday and created a ripple of discomfort when he railed against deferred prosecution agreements (DPAs) and government appointment of federal monitors, forcing the event's organizer out of his chair and into mild-mannered damage control mode. (Pizarro, PolitickerNJ) Morning News Digest: May 11, 2009