Union ratifies new contract with Star-Ledger

Teamsters Local 1100, which represents 400 Star-Ledger mailers, voted 183-18 to ratify a new labor contract that agrees to a three-year freeze on wages and a buyout of almost 100 members.  George Arwady, the publisher of the state's alrgest newspaper, has said that the Star-Ledger would be sold or close if two unions didn't ratify new agreements, and if 200 additional employees didn't agree to a buyout. 

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Lautenberg and Frelinghuysen are among the nation's richest legislators

United States Sen. Frank Lautenberg and U.S. Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen are two of the richest legislators in the country, according to a report from the Capitol Hill newspaper Roll Call. 

The newspaper based its ranking of the 50 richest legislators on their financial disclosure forms, however, which the article’s authors caution are “extraordinarily unreliable sources of information.”   

Lautenberg, who co-founded Automated Data Processing (ADP) in 1949 and ran it until he went to the Senate in 1982, is the richest legislator from New Jersey and the seventh richest one in the country, with assets totaling $55.33 million. 

Frelinghuysen, the scion of a family that has been involved with American politics since the 18th century, is the 12th richest legislator, with assets totaling $22.41 million.  He comes in just ahead of Republican presidential candidate John McCain, who’s worth $19.64 million. 

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Adler and Myers play the blame game

Neither state Sen. John Adler nor Medford Mayor Chris Myers have ever held federal office before, but to hear their campaigns tell it, both are in some way responsible for the nation’s economic turmoil.

With President Bush in Colts Neck to raise money for Myers, Adler took the opportunity to paint the two Republicans with the same brush as the president who only 22% of New Jerseyans approve of, according to the latest poll. If Bush is to blame for the crisis, according to Adler, then Myers can’t be trusted to deal with it, having been one of the president’s “foot soldiers.”

"If Mayor Myers had any sense of the fear and feeling of utter helplessness gripping Americans being punished by this economic meltdown, he would not be standing arm in arm this afternoon with the very symbol of that failure, " he said in a statement. "Not since Herbert Hoover have we had a president whose blind spot on the economy had such a devastating impact on all Americans. For Chris Myers to be celebrating his friend and ally in the White House, especially at this time, demonstrates in the starkest possible way that he could never be trusted to be an advocate for the taxpayers of this district."

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Zeitz buoyed by DCCC designation

Josh Zeitz, left, speaks to a Saturday crowd that includes Mercer County Executive Brian J. Hughes, right.: Politicker photoJosh Zeitz, left, speaks to a Saturday crowd that includes Mercer County Executive Brian J. Hughes, right.: Politicker photo 

TRENTON - Since the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee last week listed the 4th Congressional race as one to watch, Democratic challenger Josh Zeitz has received, on average, cash commitments of $10,000 per day for his campaign, according to spokesman Steven D’Amico.

"It’s more than what we were getting before," said D’Amico, who wouldn’t specify exactly how much more.

Bolstered by the cash infusion, Zeitz took the floor at Saturday’s Obama HQ opening and declared that Nov. 4th will usher in a Democratic sweep.

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Codey wants Bloomberg as nation's "economic czar"

Senate President Dick Codey has joined a growing chorus that’s clamoring to install New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg as the nation’s new “economic czar” – a post that doesn’t yet exist.

Having worked with Mayor Bloomberg when I was Governor, I witnessed his economic prowess first hand,” said Codey.  “No one understands the business sector better than he does.  Just as importantly, he relates to working class families and understands their struggles… I honestly believe that there’s no one more qualified in this country to take on such a critical role that requires an understanding of the fundamentals of both Wall Street and government.  Whoever is trusted with making this appointment would be foolish not to go directly to Mike Bloomberg.”

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Democrats rip the GOP over Bush fundraiser

Assemblywoman Linda Stender (D-Fanwood) and Josh Zeitz in Trenton this afternoon.: Politicker photoAssemblywoman Linda Stender (D-Fanwood) and Josh Zeitz in Trenton this afternoon.: Politicker photo 

TRENTON - Wall Street is melting down while President George W. Bush fundraises in Colts Neck for candidates who will continue his failed policies, argued Democrats at a Statehouse press conference this afternoon.

State Democratic Chairman Joseph Cryan stood with congressional candidates, Assemblywoman Linda Stender (D-Fanwood) and professor Joshua Zeitz of Bordentown. They all whiplashed Republicans for allowing Bush to come and raise money in a state where the latest Strategic Vision poll shows the president with a 20 percent job approval rating.

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Politically connected engineer admits bribing disgraced Ocean Township officials

Howard Schoor, who founded one of New Jersey’s most politically powerful engineering firms, pleaded guilty today in federal court to bribing two former Ocean Township officials in exchange for contracts. 

Schoor admitted paying $15,000 to former Mayor Terrence Weldon and former Township of Ocean Sewerage Authority (TOSA)chairman Stephen Kessler, who in exchange delivered contracts to Schoor’s company, Schoor DePalma.

Kessler pleaded guilty to accepting bribes from a then-unnamed representative of an engineering firm back in 2005, for which he and Weldon – who at the time of the payments both sat on the TOSA’s board – rewarded the firm with contracts relating to a sewer-line project and the renovation of the authority’s sewerage treatment plant.

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The Back Room

Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: April 18, 2014

Fulop endorses Smith in Bayonne mayoral raceBAYONNE - Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop parachuted into the Bayonne mayoral race on Thursday night by endorsing incumbent Mayor Mark Smith."It is a pleasure to be with you here, Mark," said Fulop to a crowd of more than 125 supporters at a...

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Op-Ed

The future of NJ Politics should not be politicians investigating politicians

By JON BRAMNICK Voices around the country agree with our concern that "bipartisan committee led by John Wisniewski is partisan." Below are observers who agree Wisneiwski's committee is not bipartisan: Chuck Todd, NBC News: "Democrats made a mistake... Read More >

Contributors

(4-16-14) New Jersey Vote By Mail Law - The voter turnout for New Jersey’s November gubernatorial election was the lowest since the days of prohibition, coming... more »
When it comes to profiling Christie, facts are for wussies (4/10/14) - As the national media stories on our Guv pile up, expect more blunders about the Garden State.... more »
This week I begin a series called Dispatches from Somewhere Else. Based on my on-going experiences as an everyman in New Jersey politics, these Dispatches review the hollowness of... more »
Watching Governor Chris Christie's shocking BridgeGate implosion, it's easy to forget the time when he truly seemed unstoppable.  Blessed with incredible political gifts and a Jersey bluster to match,... more »

Quote of the Day

Quote of the day

"This is my first Mark Smith event. There have been a lot of changes in Hudson County over the last year and a half, and the most important change that has happened is that there really is unity. For the first time, we really are working together. Despite political differences. Mark and I have worked very hard to repair that. I'm really happy to be here in support of him, because I recognize that when you work together, politics becomes secondary and you really have time to focus on government, which is the most important thing." - Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop

- PolitickerNJ.com

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