By Minhaj Hassan | December 5th, 2012 - 7:08pm
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TRENTON - Assembly Budget Committee Chairman Vincent  Prieto (D-32) of Secaucus, thanked several people from the Asian American Retailers Association for taking time out today to attend the hearing regarding the Lottery monetization plan.

He said they have a strong interest in making sure Lottery sales aren’t diverted away from them, adding that they helped put a face on a controversial plan that, until today, has flown “under the radar.”

“It affects the small businesses, those mom and pop shops throughout the state of New Jersey,” he said.

While he’s glad the hearing took place, he wished more administration officials would have attended as well.

“There’s a lot questions that need to be answered,” he said. He had particular concerns about the $120 million one-shot payment the successful bidder would have to give the state and its potential of not living up to expectations.

He mentioned that Illinois, which already made a similar move, has had a contractor that has met its revenue targets.

Prieto said the small business owners are rightly concerned about the big-box retailers siphoning away Lottery customers, and the associated sales.

Assemblyman Benji Wimberly said he supports the small business owners adding that they are the ones who have helped make the Lottery program successful.

“If it’s not broke, let’s not try to fix it,” he said.

The Back Room

Christie takes state helicopter to campaign in Connecticut

Gov. Chris Christie took the "upper level" -- helicoptering over the George Washington Bridge -- to beat rush hour traffic from his home state to a recent GOP fundraiser with Connecticut gubernatorial contender Tom Foley, according to a Hearst Media report.

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Wake-Up Call

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Op-Ed

NJ Legislature must get behind statewide standard of responsible contracting

By Michael Capelli As a 30 year union carpenter, I learned first-hand how important it was to have the right tools for the job. Now as the Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the 30,000 men and women of the Northeast Regional Council of Carpenters I... Read More >

Contributors

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Quote of the Day

quote of the day

"Gov. Chris Christie says he won’t campaign for the Republican gubernatorial candidate in New York because the cause is hopeless: Gov. Andrew Cuomo is ahead by more than 30 points. But he will campaign in New Hampshire, over and over, where the Republican is also trailing by more than 30 points. What’s the reason? It may be that New Hampshire holds the nation’s first presidential primary. It may be that he doesn’t want to mess with Cuomo, who knows where the skeletons are buried at the Port Authority. But one thing is certain: Gov. Straight Talk is spinning again. And it seems to be habit-forming." - columnist Tom Moran

- Star-Ledger

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