TRENTON - Governor Chris Christie and Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that they have directed their state’s respective Homeland Security Advisors and State Police Superintendents to immediately lead a bi-state review of current safety and security procedures. In light of the heightening of terrorist activity and increased tensions between America and terrorist networks, Governors Cuomo and Christie said they are "acting immediately" with steps to ensure that proper, effective, and coordinated protocols are in place and all appropriate law enforcement entities are proactively prepared for potential threats to the New York-New Jersey region.
The states will coordinate with the United States Departments of Homeland Security and Justice, the FBI, the New York Police Department, and the Port Authority.
The review follows a meeting with New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, local, state and federal security and law enforcement officials convened by the governors last week, and will demand and encourage engagement and cooperation with top officials from local, state and federal law enforcement and public safety offices to continue to keep the region’s public safety paramount.Read More >
TRENTON - Fired-up Republican and Democratic legislators on this cool Monday afternoon railed against New Jersey's estate tax -- or "death tax" -- for driving capital out of the state and burdening families during a press conference on the capitol steps.
Hosted by Americans for Prosperity, a taxpayer advocacy group, state Senator Steve Oroho (R-24) and Assemblymen Jay Webber (R-26) joined members from organizations like the 60 Plus Association, Commerce and Industry Association and the Common Sense Institute during the conference in calling for a repeal of the estate tax, which they say is contributing to an exodus of job creators and wealthier residents from the state.
"Now you might not think that the estate tax is going to impact you, even some of those in the media here today, but let me be very clear: the estate tax in the state of New Jersey is one of the most regressive, painful things that a family can go through," said Daryn Iwicki, state director for Americans for Prosperity. "Forbes ranks us time and time again the worst place in the country to die in. And we have an opportunity to change that here in the state of New Jersey."Read More >
The women in the New Jersey Assembly Republican caucus have a message for NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell: clear out your desk.
Their beef is with Goodell's handling of the domestic violence issue in the aftermath of last week's Ray Rice elevator video, which shows the star former Baltimore Ravens running back punching his fiance in Atlantic City.
“When someone sucker punches an innocent woman or takes a switch to his son, something is terribly wrong," said the Republicans in a statement. "The league either delays disciplinary action or issues a slap on the wrist of the offender. The victims are vulnerable to the power of these men. Commissioner Goodell is unsuccessfully trying to appease the fans and advertisers that the league takes these actions seriously. If he were truly serious, he would apologize and submit his resignation over his failure to take immediate steps to prevent these kinds of assaults. The NFL should send a message to society that it will not tolerate these actions, and implement a no-tolerance policy with severe repercussions.”Read More >
TRENTON - This afternoon, legislation sponsored by Assemblyman John McKeon (D-27), Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto (D-32), Assembly Majority Leader Lou Greenwald (D-6), Charles Mainor (D-31), Mila Jasey (D-27) and Gary Schaer (D-36) to create a statewide gun buyback program to cut back on the number of firearms out in communities throughout the state passed in the Assembly by a vote of 53-22-5.
“Gun violence claims lives every day. In some communities, it is an-all too common reality,” said McKeon. “We realize a gun buyback program alone will not eliminate gun violence, but it can help enhance public safety by reducing the number of firearms in circulation.”Read More >
TRENTON – In a state scuffed up by the Ray Rice elevator scandal, the Assembly this afternoon passed a battery of anti-domestic violence bills, including A2154, which permits a witness under the age of 16 or a victim of any age to testify by closed circuit television in prosecutions for crimes or offenses involving domestic violence.
The bill sailed across the floor by a vote of 80-0-0.
“What occurred last week in the media is made relevant because it happened to be a famous sports star,” said co-prime sponsor Assemblywoman Gabriela Mosquera (D-4). “The reality is it happens every day. I’m very passionate about this issue. This issue is real to me because I lived through it. My family was very lucky. My mother survived. Most victims, they don’t.”
The bill was the first of a series of bills.Read More >
JERSEY CITY - Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop maintained that one of his key policy initiatives could cross over New Jersey's urban and suburban political divide in a statewide race.
"Reentry is a bipartisan issue," Fulop told PolitickerNJ on Monday after a crowd of more than 200 people watched federal and state politicos converge for the opening of Martin’s Place, Jersey City’s new prisoner reentry center, on Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive in Jersey City. "We had four governors, a U.S. Senator [Bob Menendez (D-NJ)], and [U.S. House of Representatives Minority] Leader Nancy Pelosi (D - CA - 12) here. This highlights the fact that this issue touched on all sides of the political spectrum. This is a good day for prisoner reentry models around the country."
Among the four governors present was current Gov. Chris Christie, who mentioned in his remarks that his administration could provide "cover" for other politicians seeking to promote prisoner reentry programs as an anti-recidivism measure in New Jersey.
When asked by the press about Christie's remarks, Fulop did not feel that Christie, a potential 2016 Republican presidential candidate, had inferred in his comments that only the GOP could take the lead on the issue.Read More >
TRENTON - In a show of solidarity, nearly 20 state lawmakers from both parties today made a statement in support of Israel's right to self-defense.
Assemblyman Chris Brown (R-2) - a Gulf War veteran - is prime sponsor of the bill, which is not on today's legislative agenda.
Brown asked the legislature's only orthodox Jew, Assemblyman Gary Schaer (D-36) (pictured) for support and the Democratic lawmaker from Passaic was happy to oblige.Read More >
TRENTON - The legislature's challenge to a move by Gov. Chris Christie to pull New Jersey out of a "cap and trade" emissions program made further headway today when the Senate Environment and Energy Committee affirmed that the withdrawal of the state from the initiative stands as a violation of legislative intent.
The Senate Oversight Resolution (SCR-125), co-sponsored by Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-3) and Environment and Energy Committee chairman and state Sen. Bob Smith (D-17), would prevent Christie from formally pulling New Jersey out of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), a regional program by northeastern states to reduce green house gas emission from power plants and factories. The state entered RGGI in 2005 under then-governor Richard Codey (D-27) but was pulled out in 2011 by Christie, who called the initiative "gimmicky."
"This would make it clear that the legislature wants New Jersey in RGGI and that the pullout was unproper," said Smith in response to questions about the aim of SCR-125, adding that the measure "by itself does not force [the state back into RGGI], but puts us in the situation where it can be litigated and allow the state to do the right thing."Read More >
When asked in New Hamsphire today about whether he was considering a presidential run in 2016, Gov. Chris Christie said he wouldn’t discuss his plans until after November.Read More >
U.S. Senate race: Bell defends gold standard stance MONTCLAIR - On the same day he was politically brickbatted by the chief adviser to the last Republican challenger to incumbent U.S. Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), GOP Senate candidate Jeff Bell stood by a key plank of policy platform: monetary reform...
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By JEFF BRINDLE It is critical that the Legislature soon enact a pending bill that would ensure the state’s Gubernatorial Public Financing Program is available in the event of a special election for governor. Not only is there no current legal... Read More >
“Clearly there’s some resemblance with Theodore Roosevelt. That direct confrontational style of leadership.” - historian Doris Hearns Goodwin, referring to Gov. Chris Christie.- The Times of Trenton
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