Morning News Digest: September 2, 2009

N.J. Assembly Speaker Joseph Roberts will not seek re-election, two top Dems say

Assembly Speaker Joseph Roberts plans to announce this morning that he will not seek re-election this fall, ending a 22-year career in the Legislature, two top Democrats familiar with his plans said Tuesday. (Margolin and Heininger, The Star-Ledger)

Two Jersey City officials plead not guilty in N.J. corruption sting

Two Jersey City officials pleaded not guilty in federal court in Newark today to conspiracy to commit extortion in connection to July’s sweeping public corruption sting. (Ryan, The Star-Ledger)

New Jersey Network withdraws request to delay N.J. governor’s race debate

The first debate in the New Jersey governor’s race will be held on Oct. 1, its sponsor said today. (Heininger, The Star-Ledger)

Coniglio gets 30-month sentence

Former state Sen. Joseph Coniglio of Paramus will likely spend the next two years behind bars for accepting more than $100,000 in bribes, disguised as consulting fees, to steer more than $1 million in state grants to Hackensack University Medical Center. (Sampson, The Record)

Paterson school chief: Staff, community support is crucial

One of the top priorities of Paterson’s new schools superintendent is to create a more “customer service-oriented” district administration. (Cunningham, The Record)

Court halts work at N.J. house eyed as site of visit by Gadhafi

A judge has ordered a halt to some work being done outside a Bergen County mansion where Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi wanted to stay during his first U.S. visit and pitch a ceremonial Bedouin-style tent to entertain guests. (Epstein, The Inquirer)

Riverfront Prison demolition bids below projection

A dozen bids submitted yesterday to demolish Riverfront State Prison in Camden came in at less than a third of the $6 million set aside for the project by the Delaware River Port Authority. (Spolar, The Inquirer)

Polls show Christie holding on to lead

Relieved Republicans claimed validation Tuesday after two polls showed gubernatorial candidate Chris Christie survived the roughest stretch of his campaign so far with his lead over Gov. Jon Corzine intact. (Heininger, Gloucester County Times)

Freeholders look to borrow $2.3M to pay for improvements at Gloucester County College

The freeholder board is set to borrow $2.3 million to help pay for several capital improvements at Gloucester County College. (McCarthy, Gloucester County Times)

New Jersey anglers’ seasons not over despite fishing above quotas

Anglers will continue to be able to catch black sea bass, summer flounder and scup if the East Coast states have their way. (Degener, Press of Atlantic City)

N.J. officials oppose wind power on Delaware Bay

New Jersey environmental officials say it’s a bad idea to build a wind farm in the Delaware Bay because it could threaten migratory birds and other natural treasures in the area. (AP)

N.J. seeks replacement services when methadone clinic announces shut down

The New Jersey Department of Human Services is reaching out to methadone treatment services in the region to replace Parkside Recovery, which announced last week it will close its clinic on Broadway in Camden as soon as possible. (Stilwell, Asbury Park Press)

Corzine meets with South Brunswick parents at informal forum

Just before kids in South Brunswick head back to school, parents and teachers got to spend some time in the high school library on Monday — chatting with the governor about education issues. (Sparta, Courier News)

Latin King leader sentenced in N.J.

A leader of the Latin Kings in New Jersey is going to prison for silencing a queen in the street gang. (AP)

Charter protests order for payment

Freedom Academy Charter School officials have contested much of a state Education Department’s order to repay $415,938 for not complying with state regulations the past two years, an official said Tuesday. (Gidjunis, Courier-Post)

Report: Roberts leaving the Assembly Assembly Speaker

Joe Roberts (D-Camden), a 22-year veteran of the Legislature, will not pursue reelection this year, according to the Star-Ledger. (Pizarro, PolitickerNJ)

Morning News Digest: September 2, 2009