Morning News Digest: December 2, 2010

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Post Scalera, Currie and Passaic confront another decision

That was a little of what Passaic County Democratic Chairman John Currie must have been thinking when Assemblyman Fred Scalera (D-Nutley) evaporated out of his 36th District seat this week, albeit not right in front of an election and not into the safety net of the Port Authority.  (Pizarro, PolitickerNJ)



Recount almost wrapped up for Gloucester GOP

They took two seats under the protection of one of the most powerful Democrats in New Jersey last month, now Republican Freeholders-elect Larry Wallace and Vince Nestore are set to do it again.  (Carroll, PolitickerNJ)



New Jersey Democrats push jobs bills

New Jersey’s Democrats say they are sweeping into a void that has been left open by Gov. Chris Christie by pushing a series of more than 30 bills to create jobs and “spark economic growth.”  (Fleisher, The Wall Street Journal)



State will continue extended jobless aid

People collecting unemployment insurance in New Jersey will continue to receive benefits for up to 20 weeks, even though Congress failed to extend federal benefits on Wednesday.  (Smith, Courier-Post)



Christie: N.J. becoming more business-friendly

New Jersey is in the process of changing its reputation as an unfriendly place for businesses to do business, Gov. Chris Christie said Wednesday.  (Willis, Asbury Park Press)



New Meadowlands overseer named

A former state legislator who issued a transition report to Governor Christie this year calling for a major overhaul of the state Department of Environmental Protection was named the new head of the Meadowlands Commission on Wednesday.  (Fallon, The Record)



Parsippany, NJ, school board upholds superintendent’s new deal

The Parsippany school board voted for the second time to uphold the contract it approved last month for Superintendent Lee Seitz.  (Bruno, Daily Record)



Gov. Christie extends time period for violent crime victims to receive New Jersey compensation

Gov. Chris Christie on Wednesday signed into law a bill extending the time in which some violent crime victims can be compensated by the state for costs related to the crimes.  (Staff, Press of Atlantic City)



Group files complaint against Christie

Gov. Chris Christie violated election laws by failing to report a pro-hunting rally he attended as an in-kind donation, an animal rights group alleged in a complaint Wednesday.  (DeFalco, Courier-Post)



Report ties bridges, fund renewal

The link between transportation funding and bad bridges was made clear in a report released by the Tri-State Transportation Campaign Wednesday, identifying 202 deficient, major bridges across the state, 14 of them in the Shore area.  (Higgs, Asbury Park Press)



New Jersey Turnpike outlook revised to negative on toll transfer concerns

The New Jersey Turnpike Authority’s credit outlook was lowered to negative from stable by Moody’s Investors Service, which noted the “siphoning” of toll money for projects outside the system.  (McNichol, Bloomberg)



Ex-Morristown, NJ, mayor Donald Cresitello fined $11K for campaign finance violations

Former Mayor Donald Cresitello has agreed to pay a fine of $11,375 for alleged 2005 campaign finance violations, which he says were the result of clerical errors.  (Koloff, Daily Record)



Residents uneasy over Camden’s layoff plan

Between a shuttered restaurant and a vacant building with a hole above the door sits a little office with tall, green-trimmed windows. On the glass hangs a sign that reads “Re(think Camden).”  (Katz, Simon, and Conaboy, The Philadelphia Inquirer)



Union concessions could save jobs in Camden

On the eve of city council considering a massive layoff plan that would cut the existing police force in half, officials Wednesday offered that concessions from police unions could save upward of 60 positions.  (Murray, Courier-Post)



N.J. advocates: Boost offshore-wind-energy development

Offshore wind projects that would curb pollution and create jobs are making headway all along the East Coast, but more should be done to advance the fledgling industry, according to a report released Wednesday by clean-energy advocates.  (Rao, The Philadelphia Inquirer)



Acting Education Commissioner Rochelle Hendricks: The unanswered question

Rochelle Hendricks was again at the head table at the state Board of Education yesterday, her nameplate as New Jersey’s “acting” education commissioner in front of her for the third month running.  (Mooney, NJ Spotlight)



From the Back Room



Report: Ethics board rules Simpson should stay out of ARC funding

The Record is reporting that the State Ethics Commission has ruled that Transportation Commissioner James Simpson should recuse himself from any dealings with funding for the ARC tunnel nixed by Gov. Chris Christie in October.  (Isherwood, PolitickerNJ)



Judges nominated to district court

Democratic U.S. Sens. Frank Lautenberg and Bob Menendez announced today that President  Obama has nominated Magistrate Judges Claire Cecchi and Esther Salas to the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey.  (Isherwood, PolitickerNJ)






Forget ethics, it’s all about the power

A week ago, Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo Jr. experienced a good-government epiphany. Double-dipping by legislators must come to an end, he said.  (Stile, The Record)



Our senators like earmarks

Sens. Frank  Lautenberg and Bob Menendez joined 54 other senators who voted against a proposal to budget  bearmarks.  (Ingle, Asbury Park Press)



Redistricting may impact how loud Hudson is heard

Congressional redistricting roulette soon will spin its web of uncertainty and New Jersey could become the odd man out.  (Albright, The Jersey Journal)



Morning News Digest: December 2, 2010