Morning News Digest: August 17, 2009

For N.J. Candidate, First Ethics Push Was Brief

He billed himself as a corruption fighter, questioned the ethics of those in power and promised to put an end to no-bid contracts for the politically connected. But when Christopher J. Christie was elected and his reform proposal was voted down, he gave up the fight and went on to approve hundreds of such contracts, including more than 50 for contributors to his campaigns. (Halbfinger, New York Times)

Twelve witnesses to testify today about N.J. public corruption

In hopes of exposing the cause of public corruption in New Jersey, the Assembly Republican Policy committee will meet at 10:30 a.m. today to hear testimony from 12 witnesses. (The Star-Ledger)

Lawmakers, experts say N.J.'s child welfare chief is getting the job done

In the year since Kimberly Ricketts has taken over the $1 billion court-ordered overhaul of New Jersey's notoriously troubled child welfare system, there is wide-spread agreement that she's getting the job done. (Livio, The Star-Ledger)

N.J. lawmakers introduce commercial fishing bill

Two southern New Jersey lawmakers are angling to help the state's commercial fishing industry. (AP)

In Loretta Weinberg, Corzine taps an outspoken, progressive and sometimes stubborn running mate

As a Wall Street tycoon wading into the swamp of New Jersey politics in the summer of 1999, Jon Corzine paid a visit to Loretta Weinberg at her office in Teaneck — "one of those obligatory, 'I have to go see the elected officials' calls," as she remembers it. (Heininger, The Star-Ledger)

Heading for a heat wave

There will be plenty of sunshine with temperatures for North Jersey expected to reach in the mid to high nineties. Tonight will be clear with a low around 70. (The Record)

Cyclists see 'other side of Bergen'

Nearly 1,000 people mounted bicycles Sunday morning and set out to tour northern New Jersey under a cloudless, blue sky. (Tangel, The Record)

Christie-Rove talks have Democrats riled

Democrats have long grumbled privately that Christopher J. Christie's tenure as U.S. attorney – marked by high-profile corruption prosecutions that made him one of New Jersey's most prominent Republicans – was tinged with political ambition. (Tamari, Inquirer)

A boon for local roads, a bane for motorists

For area drivers, this is becoming the summer of their discontent. (Nussbaum, Inquirer)

East Greenwich Township Fire Rescue works with municipal officials in push for single, central facilities

The township's two fire companies officially merged last September to form one company, after both operated independently for over 100 years, and now the East Greenwich Township Fire Rescue is hoping to soon unite the new company under one roof. (Counihan, Gloucester County Times)

Center takes on dizzying set of problems

Underwood-Memorial Hospital is keeping on par with other South Jersey health systems with its new Balance Center, aimed at preventing and treating disorders that cause falls. (Romalino, Gloucester County Times)

New Jersey’s Iraq War veterans in Atlantic City to plan their future

Yiesena Nunez worked as an assistant in a medical office before her Army National Guard unit was deployed to Camp Bucca in Iraq last year. (Spahr, Press of Atlantic City)

Renovations would expose many lives of Longport museum

The building next to Borough Hall has had many lives over the years. (DeAngelis, Press of Atlantic City)

N.J. moves to preserve veterans' experiences

New Jersey has taken a step to help ensure that the personal experiences and stories of its military veterans will not be forgotten. (AP)

Branchburg board to discuss settlement on denied Route 22 project

A revamped version of a convenience store and gasoline station project rejected by the Board of Adjustment will be at the center of a hearing Wednesday before the panel. (Bricketto, Courier News)

South Plainfield firm that won big solar contract ramps up hunt for workers

Some came in suits and ties, armed with a wealth of experience. Others arrived looking comfortable in dress shirts, khakis and loafers, bolstered by an inside connection. Some came nearly out of college. And at least one was simply in the wrong place. (Grant, Courier News)

Building plays role in city's future

The performing arts could launch Woodbury's much-needed downtown revitalization, city officials, business owners and a local developer said. (Rosen, Courier-Post)

Funds will create buffer near base

The military has given Burlington County government an additional half million dollars toward farmland preservation in order to create a wider buffer zone around a joint military base. (Comegno, Courier-Post) Morning News Digest: August 17, 2009