Morning News Digest: September 24, 2010

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More nominations from the front office

Gov. Chris Christie submitted the following appointments for senate approval:  (Isherwood, PolitickerNJ)



Disclose Act fails again in Senate

The Disclose Act, which would force interest groups to be more transparent about political spending, was shot down once again in the U.S. Senate today.  (Isherwood, PolitickerNJ)



With Christie in Mexico, Guadagno cuts red tape

Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno signed an executive order today in her first achievement as acting governor.  (Carroll, PolitickerNJ)



Acting-Gov. Kim Guadagno signs order to establish bi-partisan Red Tape Review Commission

Acting Gov. Kim Guadagno signed an executive order Thursday that makes permanent a consulting groupå designed to weed out red tape and government waste.  (Fletcher, Statehouse Bureau)



E-mail, conversations allude to Gov. Christie’s concerns about Hudson tunnel funding

TRENTON — As early as March, Gov. Chris Christie’s administration may have been considering withholding the state’s $2.7 billion portion of money to pay for a new tunnel from New Jersey to Manhattan, according to an e-mail and conversations from a high-level state Transportation Department official.  (The Associated Press)



Democrat questions whether transportation chief violated N.J. ethics policies in Hudson tunnel project

TRENTON — A Democratic assemblyman today called into question whether the state Transportation Commissioner is in violation of ethics policies because he dealt with the Hudson rail-tunnel project while working with the federal government.  (Fleisher, Statehouse Bureau)



New Jersey joins federal foreclosure program

TRENTON — New Jersey is moving into a federal foreclosure-prevention program previously reserved for states with the most-battered economies.  (Jordan, Statehouse Bureau)



Schools run by Newark may yet reflect Christie’s vision

Handed new power to reinvigorate the Newark school system, Mayor Cory A. Booker is likely to push for politically charged ideas like more charter schools, aid for private-school tuition and linking teacher pay to student performance, according to people who have worked with the mayor and followed his career and comments on education.  (Pérez-Peña, The New York Times)



School funds bid is mired in politics

Politicians in Trenton have turned New Jersey’s failed bid for a $400 million federal grant to fund education reform into a partisan shouting match with little focus on the program’s goal of improving student performance.  (Reitmeyer, Statehouse Buearu)



N.J. towns’ payments to pension system to rise an average of 22 percent

TRENTON — Local governments will have to pay an average of 22 percent more toward the state’s pension system next year, a bill that will put further pressure on municipal budgets and property taxpayers.  (Method, Statehouse Bureau)



Pascrell wants tax compromise

Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr. said Thursday it’s time for House Democrats to compromise with Republicans on taxes, and they need to pass a bill before Election Day without waiting for the Senate.  (Jackson, the Record)



From the Back Room



Stedman beware

First came the massive donation to five Newark charities, including one founded by Mayor Cory Booker.  (Editor, PolitickerNJ)






County financing agency makes mockery of pay-to-play reform

Nearly $10,000 went to sticking Bergen County-owned horses with acupuncture needles while the Bergen County Improvement Authority stuck taxpayers with the bill.  (Stile, The Record)



Gov. Christie, Newark Mayor Cory Booker attempt to lessen Race to the Top error with Oprah show

Oh, good. Now we’re solving intractable urban school problems by relying on a 26-year-old billionaire geek from California and Oprah Winfrey. Going on national television in an orchestrated media blitz with two of the most ambitious politicians in New Jersey, Gov. Chris Christie and Newark Mayor Corey Booker.  (Braun, The Star-Ledger)



Christie, Booker form an ‘Ironbound’ alliance

IT’S THE Ironbound Alliance: The Bergen County native who became mayor of Newark and the Newark native who moved to an upper-middle class suburb and became governor of New Jersey. Cory Booker and Chris Christie are simultaneously “the odd couple” and perfect together.  (Doblin, The Record)



Hopeful signs of good government in New Jersey

It is time to tell the best kept secret in New Jersey politics: The preponderance of public servants are high-minded and hard-working individuals, endeavoring to do the right thing in difficult circumstances.  (Paula A. Franzese, guest columnist, The Star-Ledger)

Morning News Digest: September 24, 2010