Morning News Digest: July 30, 2009

Solomon Dwek, key corruption witness, gave $190K to N.J. politicians

Solomon Dwek, the cooperating witness at the center of the New Jersey corruption inquiry, made $190,000 in campaign contributions from 1998 through 2006 to a broad array of New Jersey political leaders, according to a report in The Record. (The Star-Ledger)

N.J. Assemblyman John Wisniewski says he turned down corruption approach

ssemblyman John Wisniewski (D-Middlesex) said he turned down an approach from the cooperating witness at the center of the New Jersey corruption sweep, according to a report on (The Star-Ledger)

N.J. race for governor: Why I can't join 'we' in buying the Republicans' spin

It is impossible for me to write honestly about this year's gubernatorial election without receiving multiple protests from loyal Republicans. (Mulshine, The Star-Ledger)

Jack Shaw's willingness to build political ties led to illegal dealings, authorities say

Even without the red suit, Jack Shaw — with his big belly and white beard — was the spitting image of Santa Claus at a Christmas party last year. (Megerian, The Star-Ledger)

Feds search for more as N.J. corruption investigation widens

Seeking more evidence and, perhaps, additional targets, federal investigators have issued a flurry of subpoenas in connection with a wide-ranging corruption investigation that has rapidly altered New Jersey's political landscape. (Margolin and Mueller, The Star-Ledger)

Former exec accused of defrauding company of $1.7M

A former executive at Rosenthal USA, the Carlstadt-based subsidiary of the high-end German porcelain and glass company, allegedly defrauded his employer of $1.7 million over a period of nearly three years, authorities said Wednesday. (The Record)

Friday deadline set for proposals on Fort Lee tract

Friday is the deadline for developers to submit proposals to the borough for a chance at constructing a mixed-use project on the last large piece of vacant land in town. (Firschein, The Record)

Insurer to pay $2M in back taxes owed by EnCap redeveloper

An insurer that backed EnCap will pay Rutherford and North Arlington $2 million to cover delinquent taxes owed by the redeveloper and begin landfill remediation work under a deal announced Wednesday. (The Record)

Cash Allowance Rebate System allowing Gloucester County car-buyers to trade in clunkers for newer models with the aid of credit voucher

ore customers have been purchasing cars from local businesses, many as a result of the federal government's new "cash for clunkers" program now in effect, according to dealers. (Counihan, Gloucester County Times)

Washington Township project to fix sidewalks at schools set to begin

Construction work to install new sidewalks around three township schools is set to begin within two to three weeks but it may not be complete in time for the start of school. (Beym, Gloucester County Times)

Developer sues in failed Trump Marina sale

A New York gaming company that tried to buy Trump Marina Hotel Casino is suing Trump Entertainment Resorts Inc. to recover its $17 million down payment in the failed $270 million deal. (Wittkowski, Press of Atlantic City)

National beach report gives N.J. bad grade

The 19th annual beach report, "Testing the Waters: A Guide to Beach Water Quality at Vacation Beaches," which was prepared by the Natural Resources Defense Council, shows serious public health risks and problems with the health of beach water in New Jersey and across the nation. (Press of Atlantic City)

NJ to more than double solar power generation

Regulators approved more than $515 million in projects Wednesday that will more than double the amount of solar power generated in New Jersey and will solidify the state's No. 2 spot behind California in power produced from the sun. (AP)

Bayshore Hospital, Meridian seek merger

Meridian Health and the owner of Bayshore Community Hospital in Holmdel have decided to merge in a bid to enhance the level of care and decrease costs. (Willis, Asbury Park Press)

Number of Central Jersey police departments mull options after being turned down for federal funding

Local police departments were weighing their options Wednesday, a day after they learned they were turned down for federal funding to help them maintain the size of their forces. (Burd, Courier News)

Jersey City Council refuses to oust member arrested in corruption probe

The Jersey City Council has rejected a resolution that called for council member Mariano Vega to resign following his arrest in last week's political corruption scandal. (AP)

Camden County rethinks future

An effort to transform Camden County's government ran into a powerful force Wednesday night — bad weather. (Walsh, Courier-Post)

Buono offended by NYT's characterizations

Silver medalist state Sen. Barbara Buono (D-Metuchen), who lost to state Sen. Loretta Weinberg (D-Teaneck) in the lieutenant governor's contest last week, objected to the way the New York Times characterized her in its Saturday morning coverage of Gov. Jon Corzine's LG drama. (Pizarro, PolitickerNJ)

Huttle and Gusciora bring up Merkt again

While the common wisdom is that last week’s arrest of dozens of public officials and political insiders benefits former U.S. Attorney Chris Christie’s gubernatorial candidacy immeasurably, Assembly members Reed Gusciora (D-Princeton) and Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Englewood) are using the turn of events to recount a controversial episode that they hope will take some luster off Christie. (Friedman, PolitickerNJ) Morning News Digest: July 30, 2009