Morning News Digest: December 7, 2010

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No compromise today on toolkit bills

Democratic leaders walked out of Gov. Chris Christie’s office with smiles that indicated nothing.  (Carroll, PolitickerNJ)



Weinberg goes rogue on pay to play bill

Wheeling, the practice of donating to one organization or candidate who in turn sends it directly to another, has for too long been an unacceptable circumvention of pay-to-play laws, according to Sen. Loretta Weinberg (D-Teaneck).  (Carroll, PolitickerNJ)



Two women sworn into N.J. Senate

The New Jersey Senate has 10 women after Dawn Addiego (R., Burlington) and Linda Greenstein (D., Middlesex) were sworn in Monday.  (Rao, The Philadelphia Inquirer)



Talks on N.J. reform continue

State Senate President Stephen M. Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Sheila Y. Oliver emerged from a 90-minute meeting with Gov. Chris Christie on Monday and announced they had not yet reached a deal on contract arbitration reforms and other legislation aimed at holding down property taxes.  (Method, Courier-Post)



Mayors urge change to civil service

Civil service rules are one of the biggest impediments for New Jersey towns looking to share services to save money, Community Affairs Commissioner Lori Grifa told lawmakers Monday.  (DeFalco, The Philadelphia Inquirer)



Christie administration blames Corzine on charters

The Christie administration said Monday that New Jersey’s failure to win a federal grant for charter school start-ups was the fault of a weak and understaffed state charter operation it inherited from Gov. Jon S. Corzine.  (Giordano, The Philadelphia Inquirer)



N.J. teachers union offering its own reform plan

New Jersey’s largest teachers union on Tuesday will unveil its own proposals to reform the state’s public education system.  (The Associated Press)



A daily double in works to revive racing

State harness racing leaders have been meeting with aides to Governor Christie while Trenton lawmakers are scrambling to pass an online poker bill by next week — all in hopes of clarifying how much standardbred racing will take place at The Meadowlands Racetrack in 2011.  (Brennan, The Record)



Hamilton man named to Port Authority position

Township resident Cedrick Fulton has been named the new director of tunnels, bridges and terminals for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.  (Duffy, The Times)



Two new bills enlist powerful state agencies to help clean up Barnegat Bay

Lawmakers yesterday took action to require two powerful state departments to be more aggressive in resolving problems plaguing Barnegat Bay, an estuary many believe is slowly dying.  (Johnson, NJ Spotlight)



Homeowners caught in crossfire of NJ’s broken property tax system

Selma and Dr. Francis DiMaio planned to live their golden years peacefully in a yellow bungalow on an avenue lined with majestic oaks, one that could easily be mistaken for any suburban street in New Jersey.  (D’Ambrosio and Mullen, Daily Record)



St. Nicholas Church begins legal action against port authority

The leaders of St. Nicholas Church, the small whitewashed Greek Orthodox Church destroyed by falling debris on Sept. 11, 2001, have begun legal action against the Port Authority demanding that the church be rebuilt under the terms of a deal worked out several years ago.  (Barbanel, The Wall Street Journal)



N.J. Assembly Dem expected to testify in bribe trial

Jurors in the corruption trial of former NJ state Assemblyman L. Harvey Smith are expected to hear from a leading Democrat Tuesday.  (The Associated Press)



From the Back Room



The doors are still closed

Sources say Democratic Party leaders remain behind closed doors at the Statehouse with Gov. Chris Christie an hour into their meeting on arbitration reform.  (Staff, PolitickerNJ)






Forget merit pay; Let’s have equal pay for equal work

Our Republican governor has been getting into some highly publicized spats lately over education reform. He’s hardly alone. A lot of Democrats have been just as vocal in calling for reform of the public schools, most notably, President Obama’s education secretary, Arne Duncan.  (Mulshine, The Star-Ledger)



Better way to coordinate regional rail

We live in an area where crossing state b0rders in routine and we share interests and have mutual concerns with other governments. When Gov. Christie cancelled the rail line from Xanadu to Macy’s basement that became readily apparent.  (Ingle, Asbury Park Press)




In 2000, (now entered the political stage, changing how New Jersey’s power elite received its daily political fix. Starting in January 2011, we’re shaking up Trenton once again. Stay tuned for State Street Wire.


Morning News Digest: December 7, 2010