Morning News Digest: May 28, 2009

Disappointment in New Jersey Governor Lifts Rivals

New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine, the millionaire whose Wall Street and Washington experience was supposed to lift New Jersey from the swamp of high taxes and dirty politics, is fighting for his job. Five months from the election, the Democrat trails Republican front-runner Chris Christie in polls, hurt by the state's budget battle and the specter of more taxes and fees in a state already bearing a heavy tax burden. At the same time, the governor's proposed budget cuts have angered his base on the left. (Sataline, Wall Street Journal)

Ex-aide sues Union City mayor over firing

A former assistant of State Sen. and Union City Mayor Brian Stack says she was unfairly fired for political reasons and is suing him, the city and the state for $1 million. (The Jersey Journal)

Lower income residents would likely pay more under Lonegan's flat tax plan

The flat income tax Republican gubernatorial candidate Steve Lonegan is pushing as a key component of his campaign would provide huge tax cuts for the rich, but lower income residents would pay more — some twice as much. (Reitmeyer, The Star-Ledger)

Mercer, Middlesex GOP spar over N.J. Assembly candidates

Every two years, Democrats and Republicans endorse candidates for the 14th district Assembly seats, with each party traditionally having one candidate from Middlesex County and another from Mercer County, but this year is different. (Haydon, The Star-Ledger)

Republican candidates for N.J. governor meet in final debate

Fresh from a feisty encounter on New Jersey 101.5 FM Tuesday night, the Republican candidates for governor met on the radio again today for their fourth and final debate before next week's primary election. (The Star-Ledger)

N.J. Supreme Court to rule on future of 'Abbott' school districts

New Jersey's Supreme Court today will rule on whether a new school funding formula proposed by Gov. Jon Corzine is constitutional, which could potentially end the long-running, and controversial, Abbott vs. Burke school funding case that has sent billions of dollars to the state's poorest communities over the past three decades. (The Star-Ledger)

Judge lifts restraining order on 40th District campaign ads

A state judge today lifted a restraining order against 40th District Assembly incumbents Scott Rumana and David C. Russo, allowing them to continue suggesting that one of their Republican primary opponents, Anthony Rottino, profited off of low-income housing. (Cowen, The Record)

GOP tax plans duel before primary

The flat income tax Republican gubernatorial candidate Steve Lonegan wants to establish in New Jersey would provide huge tax cuts for the rich, but for lower-income earners bills would grow – and in some cases double. (Reitmeyer, The Record)

Online brokers selling Springsteen tix

Fans can already buy tickets for Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band concerts at Giants Stadium even though they technically don't go on sale until Monday. (AP)

County approves deal to preserve 93 acres in Harrison

The county approved an agreement Wednesday with the township preserving 93 acres of open space to most likely be used for recreation purposes. The agreement saves more than 100 homes from being built on the tract, which would have added too much strain on the already traffic-heavy area, county officials said. (Paciolla, The Gloucester County Times)

Washington Twp. work week down to four

The lights will be off in the municipal building on Fridays as the township moves to a four-day work week for the summer months. (Beym, The Gloucester County Times)

N.J. sues ticket resellers over Springsteen seats

New Jersey's attorney general is suing three ticket resellers for offering marked-up tickets to Bruce Springsteen concerts that have not yet gone on sale to the public. (Tamari, Inquirer)

Glouco GOP divided over leadership

A rift over leadership in the Gloucester County Republican Party has created a bitterly contested primary for two seats on the freeholder board. (Hefler, Inquirer)

Advice to school hit by flu: Sanitize

Monmouth County Health Officer Michael Meddis said Wednesday night that schools that stay open after students have come down with swine flu should be wiped down often with with chlorine bleach to kill virus droplets that can live on hard surfaces for up to 48 hours. (Shields, Asbury Park Press)

Counties: Rail line should go to Red Bank

Significant progress was made on the proposed Monmouth-Ocean-Middlesex, or MOM, rail line after representatives of the three counties agreed on construction of a route from Ocean County to Red Bank, instead of to Monmouth Junction, ending years of stalemate. (Higgs, Asbury Park Press)

GM troubles threaten income of local retirees

Frank and Patricia Bordonaro are no hotshot, wheeling and dealing Wall Street investors. The retired couple shares a house in the Mystic Islands section of Little Egg Harbor Township with a brother-in-law. They both had open heart surgery several years ago and live on $2,500 per month. (Ortiz, Press of Atlantic City)

Langford campaign challenging messenger ballots in Atlantic City

The first day to file signed applications for the city’s coveted and controversial messenger ballots attracted hundreds of potential ballots Wednesday. It also revealed new strategies within Mayor Lorenzo Langford’s campaign — both legally and on the street. (Clark, Press of Atlantic City)

Veteran Edison cop pleads guilty to obstructing justice, must quit police force

A veteran Edison police officer pleaded guilty in Superior Court, New Brunswick, on Wednesday to obstruction of the administration of justice in connection with the investigation of a company where he moonlighted as a security guard. (Serrano, Courier News)

Taj Mahal employee shot dead; patron arrested

An employee was shot Wednesday afternoon inside the Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort and died soon afterward, and a regular patron who knew him was in custody, state police and the casino's CEO said. (Perry, AP)

Gloucester Co. buys 93 acres in Harrison for $7.2 million

Gloucester County officials announced Wednesday the purchase of 93 acres of open space that will be given to Harrison Township for recreational use. (Smith, Courier-Post)

Karrow targets Lonegan's flat tax in radio debate with Doherty

Assemblyman Mike Doherty (R-Washington Twp.) said he’ll live or die politically with gubernatorial candidate Steve Lonegan, whose rival, state Sen. Marcia Karrow (R-Raritan Twp.), acted like Lonegan’s flat tax provided her with a generous opening in their WRNJ radio debate here this morning. (Pizarro, PolitickerNJ)

COAH continues to reverberate in GOP debate

Republican gubernatorial candidates Rick Merkt and Steve Lonegan both went after Christie on the Council on Affordable Housing (COAH) during tonight’s debate. (Friedman, PolitickerNJ)

Morning News Digest: May 28, 2009