Acting AG: Here’s one way to hold the gun industry responsible for the harm they cause | Opinion

Published: May. 29, 2022

By Matthew J. Platkin

Gun violence in America is a public health crisis. Just this month alone we have seen mass shootings at a supermarket, a church and an elementary school. In each tragic case, the victims were simply performing ordinary activities — shopping for groceries, attending church services, and enjoying what would have otherwise been an ordinary school day. The perpetrators of these atrocities appeared to have one thing in common: ready access to firearms.

According to a U.S. Centers for Disease Control report issued earlier this month, deadly shootings accounted for 79% of homicides nationwide in 2020 — a 35% increase from the prior year and the highest firearm homicide rate in more than two decades. New Jersey, unfortunately, is not insulated from the national uptick in gun violence: in 2020 there were 330 homicides in our state, 25% more than the year before, and two-thirds of those deaths involved a firearm.

The Attorney General’s Office has a long history of working closely with law enforcement partners at all levels of government to keep our residents safe, including through smart and evidence-based police work that leads to the arrest and prosecution of individuals, gangs, and gun traffickers who violate New Jersey’s commonsense gun laws, and who bring danger and chaos to our communities.

Read more
1 reaction Share

N.J. legal weed racks up $24 million in sales in first month

Published: May. 26, 2022

Thursday, April 21, 2022 - Customers enter the Zen Leaf cannabis dispensary in Elizabeth where New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy would visit on the day that New Jersey joins 13 other states in legalizing marijuana for recreational use. 
---

New Jersey legal weed sales topped $24 million in the first month of the roll out at a dozen locations, according to the state Cannabis Regulatory Commission.

Actual receipts reported to the CRC showed $24,201,875.38 million in recreational weed sales from April 21 to May 21.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Angry Murphy issues challenge for N.J. gun laws after Texas elementary school shooting. ‘Choose whose side you’re on.’

Published: May. 25, 2022

A day after a mass shooting left 19 students and two adults dead at a Texas elementary school, Democratic New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy on Wednesday once again challenged the state’s Democratic-controlled Legislature to vote on a set of stalled gun-control proposals introduced more than a year ago, saying “this moment demands” lawmakers “finally take action.”

But he didn’t stop there.

In a news conference at his office in Trenton, Murphy also dared the Legislature to hold votes on all gun-related bills that have been introduced — even those proposed by Republicans to loosen the state’s firearm laws. And he called out four Republican state lawmakers by name.

Read more
1 reaction Share

A New Jersey Republican’s Political Strategy: Say Less

Senate Minority Leader Tom Kean Jr., center, speaks to colleagues during a break at the New Jersey State House in 2018. Credit...
---

Tom Kean Jr., a New Jersey Republican locked in the state’s most competitive congressional race, has refused to debate his primary opponents.

He has avoided talking to most reporters.

And he has dodged questions about whether he agrees with the Republican National Committee’s characterization of the deadly Jan. 6 insurrection at the Capitol as “legitimate political discourse.”

Mr. Kean, the scion of a storied political family, has adopted what appears to be a core strategy as he tries to avoid alienating moderate swing voters while facing challengers from the right: to keep his mouth, basically, shut.

“I’m calling it the vow of silence,” said Micah Rasmussen, director of the Rebovich Institute for New Jersey Politics at Rider University.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Will going green help utility customers save some green of their own?

TOM JOHNSON, ENERGY/ENVIRONMENT WRITER | MAY 24, 2022

NJ Spotlight News

Electric heating promises to save money for utility customers.

---

Customers will largely see some savings when utilities transition to green energy, according to a preliminary analysis of a much-anticipated study presented Monday by state regulators and a consultant they hired.

The state expects the study to be finished this summer, but already critics question why so many future expenses are not included in the analysis.

In its preliminary assessment, the Brattle Group suggests residential consumers by 2030 will largely reap savings, primarily by electrifying building-heating systems and switching to electric vehicles, two major components of the state’s Energy Master Plan.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Justice denied: Because Murphy and lawmakers can’t staff our courts | Editorial

Published: May. 22, 2022

New Jersey’s courts are confronting an unprecedented crisis: They’ve been left short-handed by a historic number of judicial vacancies.

This understaffing only compounds the backlog worsened by the pandemic, when courtrooms closed and trials were postponed, leaving people without access to justice – a core tenet of our democracy, and a basic human right.

Chief Justice Stuart Rabner laid out some horrifying hard evidence of the problem and the human cost in his “State of the Judiciary” speech before the Bar Association in Atlantic City on Friday.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Newark area has some of the country’s most segregated schools, study finds

PATRICK WALL, CHALKBEAT NEWARK | MAY 23, 2022

NJ Spotlight News

Schools in the Newark metropolitan area rank first nationally in terms of economic segregation and second in Black-white segregation, a new analysis found.

---

The schools in Newark and nearby communities are among the most severely segregated in the nation, according to a new nationwide analysis.

The Newark area ranks first in economic segregation and second in Black-white segregation, according to the analysis of public and private schools in all 403 metropolitan areas in the United States. The rate of segregation between Black and white students in Newark’s region is nearly three times the national average.

The Newark metropolitan area includes 118 school districts spread across six counties in northern New Jersey and one county in Pennsylvania. The vast majority of racial and economic segregation in that area occurs between school districts, not within them, according to the analysis, which also found that school segregation is more extreme in the Northeast than in other regions of the country.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Is New Jersey about to face a reckoning over abortion access?

By Joey FoxMay 20 2022

New Jersey Globe

Gov. Phil Murphy signs the Freedom of Reproductive Choice Act on January 13, 2022, with Senate President Nicholas Scutari, former Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg, and former Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle.

---

When Gov. Phil Murphy debuted his proposals for expanding abortion access in New Jersey last week, it was something of a triumphant moment for the governor and his allies. With the U.S. Supreme Court potentially prepared to overturn Roe v. Wade nationwide, Murphy could show that he and New Jersey Democrats were fighting back.

But the proposals Murphy announced, which include an insurance mandate for abortions, the creation of a state reproductive health fund, and an expansion of the pool of potential abortion providers, don’t face an easy path to becoming law.

In order to make it to the governor’s desk, any bill expanding abortion access will have to get past nervous Democrats, skeptical Republicans, and a legislative leadership team chiefly concerned with keeping their wide-ranging caucuses happy. Each of these groups could sink Murphy’s proposals before they even get off the ground – and all have so far shown reluctance to say anything at all about where they stand.

Read more
1 reaction Share

Pascrell Takes Aim at Upside Down Tax Scrutiny

By Bob Hennelly | May 18, 2022

Insider NJ

As it turns out, in recent years, even as wealthy Americans were claiming an ever greater share of the nation’s wealth, the IRS was less and less likely to audit them, according to a report from the U.S. General Accounting Office that was commissioned by Rep. William Pascrell (D-NJ-09), chair of the House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight.

It’s his instinct to ask for this kind of vexing research that makes me believe that this 85-year-old Congressman is a not just a New Jersey treasure, but a national one. 

For decades, as Wall Street and the lobbyists whose mission it is to protect great wealth,  custom designed the tax code and then pressured Congress to defund the IRS, it was Pascrell that’s kept on their case.  He’s never forgotten that he works for the working class voters in places like Paterson that send him back to Congress election after election.  

In fact, he’s clear it’s a privilege. 

Read more
1 reaction Share

Trenton must do more to help N.J.’s hungry | Editorial

Published: May. 16, 2022

New Jersey has just received the definitive assessment of its handling of hunger during the pandemic, and here’s what we know about our performance: More than a quarter-million households were food insecure, the state has the resources and talent to prevent systemic meltdowns in the future, and our policy leaders – notably, Gov. Murphy himself – still must prove that they are committed to fixing a very complex system.

These are all spelled out in an extraordinary report from the Food Research and Action Center (FRAC), the national powerhouse that studies poverty-related hunger, which partnered with Robert Wood Johnson to form an all-star advisory workgroup and prepare dozens of recommendations for food policy initiatives that New Jersey would be wise to consider.

And the report reminds us that we’re running out of time, because food insecurity – a.k.a. the second pandemic – only cuts deeper when there is inflation, supply chain breakdowns, and government indifference.

Read more
1 reaction Share

← Previous  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10    370  371  Next →