TRENTON - Minutes before the Legislative Select Committee on Investigation began its questioning of Chris Christie’s incoming Chief of Staff Regina Egea here today, two Republican lawmakers on the committee called for an end to the man hunt.
Assemblywoman Amy Handlin (R-13) and state Sen. Jon Bramnick (R-21) asked why the committee, led by chairman John Wisniewski (D-19), has yet to turn up concrete results on what caused last year's lane closings on the George Washington Bridge despite already hearing from a number of top Chris Christie aides.Read More >
Paterson Mayor Jose "Joey" Torres took steps to further neutralize his vanquished May rival in the mayor's contest last night and make nice with the Democratic Party when he appointed Al Abdel-aziz and Nelly Hidalgo Celi to the Paterson Planning Board.
Celi was Councilman Andre Sayegh's campaign manager in 2010, and went over to the Torres camp in this year's election. Her appointment is less of an immediate political statement than that of Abdel-aziz.
The latter was a key Sayegh ally in the 2014 contest, leading the get-out-the-vote effort in the 6th Ward.Read More >
TRENTON - The so-called “Big Six” fundraising committees reported the weakest combined campaign finance activity in at least eight years, a sign that independent spending by special interest groups may be taking a toll on traditional fundraising committees, according to an analysis by the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission (ELEC).
“It may be no coincidence that in the year after special interest groups spent a record $41 million independently of parties and candidates, traditional fundraising committees are struggling,” said Jeff Brindle, ELEC’s Executive Director.
Reports filed by the two state parties and four legislative leadership committees revealed a combined reserve of just $800,994. At this point last year, the cash-on-hand for both parties totaled $3.2 million - nearly four times as much. Even compared to 2012, which was an off-election year, the total is low.
The following ELEC table representing Jan. 1 through June 30th of this year, shows the big six committees, the money they raised, spent, cash on hand, followed by their net worth.Read More >
RAMSEY - One of the most distinctive features of this approximately 15,000-person northern Bergen County borough is the long, rolling lawn in front of the local high school. This November, Ramsey voters will roll into their voting booths with more choices on the ballot than usual.
First and foremost, Ramsey residents will decide who will fill the seat left vacant by Republican incumbent Mayor Christopher Botta, who did not choose to seek reelection. Seeking a four-year term are Independent Richard Muti and Democrat Julie O'Brien and Republican Deirdre Dillon. At the same time, Ramsey voters will choose between Republican incumbent Kathleen Donovan and her Democratic challenger, Bergen County Freeholder Jim Tedesco, in the Bergen County Executive's race; six-term incumbent U.S. Rep. Scott Garrett (R-5) and Democratic challenger Roy Cho in the Fifth Congressional District contest; and Bergen County native U.S. Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) in his reelection bid against GOP challenger Jeff Bell.Read More >
U.S. Rep. Scott Garrett (R-5) has nearly $3.2 million cash on hand, according to the Federal Election Commission (FEC).
Garrett raised nearly $1.6 million so far this year as he prepares for a general election showdown with Democratic challenger Roy Cho.
The movement conservative Republican reported zero debt.Read More >
The always federally game Assemblyman Upendra Chivukula (D-17) might be serving his last term in the legislature, sources say.
With the blessing of powerful allies in his party, the veteran lawmaker is awaiting a flight path out of the Statehouse to the Board of Public Utilities (BPU).
A Somerset Dem and engineer by trade, Chivukula ran afoul of the Middlesex County Democratic Party last year when he ran for Congress in the 12th District, making life more difficult for state Sen. Linda Greenstein (D-14).Read More >
TRENTON - In 2011, standing side-by-side beneath the bare bones girders and iron scaffolding of a half-built Revel Casino, Gov. Chris Christie and Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-3) doubled-down on a bet placed 30 years earlier: that Atlantic City, once imagined a Las Vegas-style getaway for the Northeast region but since fallen on hard times, could survive as New Jersey’s sole gambling mecca.
It was a double-down bet because the state had gambled on the prospect once before, in the 1970s, when it first legalized gambling and passed its original casino laws. But not since then had New Jersey updated its stance on the subject, and both Gov. Christie and Sweeney thought it time to reinforce the state’s commitment to the troubled city. This time around, the vision was to reinvigorate the debilitated resort town -- to “return Atlantic City to the ranks of the best destinations in the world,” the governor said -- by drafting an ambitious legislative package geared toward supporting its gaming industry.
Part of the package, signed that day amidst union leaders and Atlantic County lawmakers, called for the creation of a state-controlled gaming district in the heart of the city’s downtown (S-12). Another part overhauled the state’s regulatory structure for casinos, something that hadn’t been done since the laws were first written (S-11). Still another part included the very shell of the building the latter two bills were signed in that day -- resumed construction on the Revel, Atlantic City’s 53-story, 6.3 million square foot behemoth seaside attraction, made possible by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority's approval of $260 million in tax-increment financing to support infrastructure improvements.Read More >
On July 22, 1928, humorist Will Rogers landed in a plane on the drill field at the Sea Girt National Guard Camp, according to the New Jersey State Society.Read More >
Winners and Losers: Week of July 14th The state takes a lot of well-deserved hits, let’s face it. But if you can shovel your way through the winters and the political sound-bites, you can get to the summers in New Jersey, which is where we are now –...
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By JEFF BRINDLE Much has been written about the magnitude of campaign spending by independent special interest groups. But until now, there has been little discussion about the impact. During the 2012 Presidential and Congressional contests,... Read More >
“Clearly President Putin has created the set of circumstances and has supplied the resources … to the rebels so that this tragedy could take place. For me, I think the West, including the [United States], has to have a far more significant response than we’ve seen to date.” - U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ)- Fox News Sunday
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