Morning Digest: June 21, 2013

14th Dist. candidates: Delay Civil Service changes

TRENTON – The 14th District Republican candidates called Thursday for the Christie administration to delay the Civil Service ‘banding’ proposal until its possible effect on veterans can be presented to the public. PolitickerNJ



Booker gets backing of Carpenters

The Northeast Regional Council of Carpenters is backing Newark Mayor Cory Booker for U.S. Senate. PolitickerNJ




Latest from State Street Wire

Assembly passes $7.4M for women’s health care

TRENTON – The Assembly passed a contentious bill for women’s health care services by a vote of 44-29-1.  State Street Wire

Sign up for a free trial of State Street Wire at 



The Christie-Chiesa conundrum

Chris Christie says he didn’t send his longtime confidant and friend, Jeff Chiesa, to the Senate to be his proxy. The interim GOP senator, who was tapped this month to temporarily fill the seat of late Democratic Sen. Frank Lautenberg, is “his own man,” aides to Christie and Chiesa insist. Politico



Seventy votes possible on immigration deal

The Senate Gang of Eight edged closer to supermajority support on its immigration bill with Thursday’s breakthrough agreement on border security and other measures meant to attract wavering Republican senators. Politico



Report: NSA can keep data indefinitely

WASHINGTON — A government watchdog testified Thursday there may have been problems with a security clearance background check conducted on the 29-year-old federal contractor who disclosed previously secret National Security Agency programs for collecting phone records and Internet data – just as news media disclosed more information about those programs. Huffington Post



Medical marijuana for minors law could pit parents against pediatricians

According to current state law, any doctor who wants to prescribe medical marijuana to a child must have a pediatrician and a psychiatrist vet his decision. That’s a particularly daunting challenge in New Jersey, where only two pediatricians have registered with the state’s nascent medical marijuana program. NJ Spotlight



DEP streamlines rules for Sandy rebuilding

Regulators have adopted rules to help streamline permitting for a range of commercial and residential rebuilding projects tied to Hurricane Sandy, state officials said today. NJBiz



Markets plunge as global sell-off fuels fears

NEW YORK  —  There was no let-up in the flight from stocks and bonds Thursday as the Dow Jones industrial average plunged 353 points and wiped out almost two months of gains. Associated Press



Eddie Murphy’s Englewood mansion sells for $10M

Has Grammy-winning R&B singer Alicia Keys bought the palatial Englewood home formerly owned by comedian Eddie Murphy? Record



In Bordentown City, a tax hike, but most will pay less

The city commission has unanimously adopted a fiscal year 2013 budget that hikes the tax rate but is expected to result in reductions in most households’ tax bills thanks to recent property reevaluations. Trenton Times



Hundreds of fish dead in South Jersey lake

The picturesque landscape of Hirsch Lake in Runnemede turned into a dirty, smelly mess this week when hundreds of dead fish floated belly up. Inquirer



Marijuana crops in Calif. Threaten forests, wildlife

ARCATA, Calif. — It took the death of a small, rare member of the weasel family to focus the attention of Northern California’s marijuana growers on the impact that their huge and expanding activities were having on the environment. NY Times



In Jersey City, city council members make nice

With the results in and the majority of the City Council on their way out, the past- and future-administrations made nice on the last Council meeting before the newly elected officials take their seats on July 1. Jersey City Independent



For Chiesa a daily crash course in ways of Washington

When he became New Jersey’s newest U.S. Senator, Jeffrey Chiesa went from one of the swankiest offices in Trenton to a bare-bones suite on Capitol Hill.

He traded in a staff of 9,000 as New Jersey’s attorney general for a crew of two or three dozen. Star-Ledger




Women under Democratic bus in N.J.

MAYBE it’s a woman thing. First Barbara Buono. Then Sheila Oliver. The Democratic Party, the supposed party of inclusion, doesn’t treat its female candidates very well. At least not in New Jersey. Doblin, Record



Gandolfini: New Jersey’s homegrown star

It’s hard to think of another actor and role that embodied a place so well. James Gandolfini’s New Jersey roots shaped the actor he became — and enriched the role he played — to great effect. Star-Ledger Morning Digest: June 21, 2013