Lots of people slammed Castro for suggesting Biden was forgetful. Not Cory Booker.

Posted Sep 13, 2019

Julian Castro’s attempted takedown of Joe Biden during Thursday’s Democratic presidential debate didn’t sit well with other candidates and plenty of political pundits.

Cory Booker isn’t one of them.

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New Jersey also plans to wield its buying power to force gunmakers to adopt policies like background checks.

By 

THE NEW YORK TIMES

Sept. 10, 2019

Gov. Philip D. Murphy, a Democrat, wants manufacturers and sellers to take steps to keep guns from falling into the wrong hands.

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MORRISTOWN, N.J. — New Jersey will stop doing business with gun manufacturers and retailers that fail to adopt policies that go beyond federal laws, like conducting expanded background checks, to stop guns from falling into the wrong hands, becoming the first state to take such stringent action against the firearms industry.

The state will also apply pressure on major financial institutions, seeking information from banks that do business with New Jersey about their relationships and policies involving gunmakers and sellers.

The state, which says it pays more than $1 billion in bank fees every year, could use the disclosure requirements to decide whether to continue doing business with financial firms.

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Misinformation Runs Rife Amid Newark's Lead Water Crisis

A sign hangs outside Newark City Hall citing water infrastructure problems across the U.S.
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NEWARK, NJ - Councilman Augusto Amador had choice words for the Baraka administration this week after he said city officials told residents that some 2,000 households in the Ironbound may be impacted by elevated levels of lead.

Amador was referring to an article published by the Portuguese newspaper LusoAmericano. He said the article cited public officials but it did not say who the officials were, where and when they spoke, or who they talked to. 

His account could not be independently verified, but an online translated version of the headline reads: “2,000 Ironbound Homes May be Affected by Water Lead Problem.”

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More Americans losing health coverage under Trump: ‘Great’ again? | Editorial

Posted Sep 12, 2019

Here’s the latest report card for the man who made big, extravagant promises of “insurance for everybody,” that would be “phenomenal.”

The Census Bureau’s new data, out this week, found that as many as 1.9 million more Americans had no health insurance in 2018 – including an additional 425,000 uninsured children.

More Americans have lost health care under President Trump, down for the first time since the Affordable Care Act was passed.

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PROPOSED $120M BOND WILL SPEED NEWARK’S PUSH TO GET LEAD OUT OF DRINKING WATER

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Nobody really made sure $11B in Hurricane Sandy grants were properly spent

Updated Sep 11, 2019

WASHINGTON — The Port Authority and other transportation agencies that shared $10.9 billion in Hurricane Sandy relief funds were supposed to hire independent monitors to make sure the money was properly spent.

But the Federal Transit Administration never followed through to make sure the watchdogs were actually watching the money, according to a report issued Wednesday by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s inspector general.

Five agencies — Port Authority, New Jersey Transit, Connecticut Department of Transportation, New York City Department of Transportation and New York’s Metropolitan Transit Authority — received more than $100 million in federal funds and therefore were required to hire monitors.

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Trump administration pledges to ‘do what is necessary’ to help Newark address its water crisis

Posted Sep 11, 2019

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration stands ready to “do what is necessary” as the city of Newark tries to get the lead out of its water.

“I will commit to doing anything that we possibly can do to alleviate the problem there, and if that involves a specific person or a dozen specific people, we will do what is necessary,” Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson said Tuesday at a Senate Banking Committee hearing.

Carson responded to a question from U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez, the top Democrat on the housing subcommittee.

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The U.S. Senate just moved to help Newark deal with its water crisis

WASHINGTON — New Jersey state officials would be able to transfer $100 million from their federal clean water fund to help replace the lead pipes that have contaminated Newark’s drinking water under legislation that passed the U.S. Senate Monday.

The bill, passed by voice vote, would help the state cover some of the $132 million it will cost to replace the lead water lines in Newark, as well as provide financial help to other municipalities. The money would be transferred from the Clean Water State Revolving Fund to the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund.

“Some states, including my home state of New Jersey, have federal funds available but are restricted from using them to address lead in drinking water,” said the bill’s chief sponsor, U.S. Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J. "This legislation would give New Jersey the flexibility to supplement Newark’s bonding package and provide immediate assistance to Newark residents.”

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ON TAP: A SUMMIT TO BOOST FIRMS OWNED BY WOMEN AND MINORITIES IN NJ

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N.J. Dems want to target white supremacists and other extremists in fight against domestic terrorism

Posted Sep 9, 2019

WASHINGTON — Two days before the anniversary of 9/11, two New Jersey lawmakers announced a new effort to target domestic terrorism, whether inspired by al-Qaida or white supremacism.

Reps. Josh Gottheimer and Bill Pascrell Jr. proposed legislation that would allow law enforcement authorities to freeze the assets of domestic terrorists or those who provide material support, and to set up a national clearinghouse to collect and share information about terrorist incidents in the U.S.

The lawmakers made their announcement in Ridgewood after hearing from Jared Maples, director of the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness. They said Maples identified homegrown violent extremists as the state’s top threat.

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