By Matthew Arco | January 28th, 2013 - 2:13pm
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TRENTON – The question of whether the state should increase its minimum wage seems poised to head to voters in the upcoming election, according to legislative leaders.

Senate President Steve Sweeney has vowed to leave it up to voters to decide the issue if Gov. Chris Christie rejected the Legislature’s proposal. With the governor’s swipe of his pen Monday, lawmakers now indicate they’re ready to vote on a measure that would send the question to the ballot box.

“The Democratic caucuses in both the Senate and the Assembly are, of course, disappointed that the governor did not sign our legislation as presented to him: $8.50 an hour with a Consumer Price Index,” Speaker Sheila Oliver said in a statement.

“So, we will use a tool available to us legislatively. We will vote on a bill that will put this on the ballot in November 2013,” she said, adding, “We just need a simple majority of votes out of the Assembly and the Senate, which we know we will have.”

Assembly Majority Leader Lou Greenwald said in a statement that “Families struggling to get by on a minimum wage salary have not seen a legitimate increase in more than six years.  Phasing in a dollar increase over the next three years essentially forces them to wait nearly a decade for an increase that will lag well behind the cost of living increases by that time.

"Governor Christie's attempt to use the Earned Income Tax Credit to distract from his veto of a minimum wage increase is beyond cynical. New Jersey's working families won't be fooled, as they remember it was the Governor himself who attacked working families by slashing this bipartisan program in the first place."

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

 The following letter was sent today to Republican state legislators, county chairs, state committee members, and New Hampshire... more »
(7-23-14) Rabner Opinion Keeps “Christie for President” Alive - Gov. Chris Christie’s fight to prevent same-sex marriage in New Jersey ended with Chief Justice Stuart Rabner.... more »
The Perry-Paul Debate is Healthy for the GOP – and for America  The foreign policy debate in the media between prospective GOP Presidential candidates Texas Governor Rick Perry and... more »
(Washington DC)-- Two recent votes on Capitol Hill suggest an overdue and radical departure from our nation's Draconian and costly War on Drugs.  It's a long-overdue discussion (and not just... more »

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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