TRENTON – Our benevolent state Legislature may finally allow kids to operate lemonade stands without permits or licenses. The law was proposed after numerous stories of cops shutting down these roadside businesses, perhaps pouring the illegal lemonade into the gutter, while confiscating all the nickels and dimes as “Exhibits A through K” for purposes of future prosecution. Or, perhaps we are over-surmising here. In any case, Assemblyman Nicholas Chiaravalloti is proposing the bill, following some effective lobbying from his young son, Joshua. Under the proposed bill, which will hopefully be enacted in time for lemonade-drinking season, municipalities would be banned from requiring a license or permit of anyone under age 18 who is attempting to operate a temporary business. There’s lots of wiggle room here, as kids would also be allowed to sell bottled water and pretzels. Of course, the state will also demand to know how the eight-year-old entrepreneurs will remit sales tax and undergo proper audits.
SOUTH JERSEY – News reports showed thousands of huddled masses sleeping on the boardwalk in the middle of January, yearning to see Donald Trump live and in full orange. The next question: How many people will be willing to do the same for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi? We may get the answer to that age-old question on Feb. 29, as Pelosi is scheduled to be at Camden County College in Blackwood to give her ringing endorsement for Rep. Donald Norcross, seeking re-election. Because a Wildwood bar created the “Subpoena Colada” in honor of Trump, perhaps an “ImPEACHment” cocktail can be served in Blackwood. “Moscow Mull” that one over.
TRENTON – New Jersey is getting top marks in some of the categories covered by this year’s “State of Tobacco Control 2020” from the American Lung Association. The state scored an A for prohibiting public smoking and another A for blocking sale of tobacco products to minors. But it flamed out when it comes to investing in prevention and cessation programs and for not taxing all tobacco products equally. NJSpotlight notes the report was put together before Gov. Phil Murphy banned flavored tobacco for e-cigarettes, which should help earn some more high marks down the road. Two As aren’t bad; let’s keep the pressure on. Smoking added more than $4 billion to our health care costs last year.
BRIEFING BREATHER: The most common street name in the U.S. is Second Street.
WARREN TOWNSHIP – Overturning a traffic ticket isn’t as easy as turning over a license plate. After a motorcyclist fought a $139 ticket since 2018, a state appeals court ordered the guy to just pay the damn fine already. NJ.com says the 29-year-old township man placed the license plate upside down on his motorcycle because “he thought it was cool.” Acting as his own lawyer, he twice appealed, arguing traffic laws are “unconstitutionally vague” because they do not explicitly prohibit upside-down license plates on motorcycles. Appellate court judges didn't agree, but kindly said nothing about this Easy Rider having a fool for a client.
IN OTHER IMPORTANT NEWS
WILSON COUNTY, Tenn. – Spencer Boston's chances of being released went up in smoke after he took a few hits off a joint – in the middle of his hearing on a marijuana possession charge, CNN reports. He was serving 10 days in jail for contempt after smoking some weed in front of Judge Haywood Barry. In court, he began espousing his views on why weed should be legalized, reaching into his jacket and producing a doobie and lighter. The bailiff rushed over, but not before Boston took a few drags and sent a cloud of smoke wafting across the courtroom. As the 20-year-old pothead was led out of the courtroom, he turned to the gallery and shouted, “The people deserve better!” A GoFundMe campaign is now well on its way to surpassing its goal of raising $5,000 – presumably to pay for his bail with some extra pocket cash for tacos.
STOWMARKET, U.K. – British animal rescuers are dealing with a new crisis: Fat owls. The latest one was found stranded in a ditch. At first, they thought the owl was injured, but then rescuers figured she was just really, really fat and could no longer fly. Since then, sanctuary owners have named the owl “Plump,” and figure she has to lose about one-third of her weight to once again go airborne. Initially, they figured Plump was getting food from humans, causing her obesity. But then they learned she has a real taste for the dark mice she finds in the wild. Lots of empty calories there, prompting the plumpness. Plump is now on a two-week diet and has so far lost an impressive 1.5 ounces.
FAIR HAVEN, VT – There’s a real horse race for mayor, pitting a lovable goat against a real dog. No joke. Incumbent Mayor “Lincoln” (the goat) was all set to run unopposed for his second, one-year term. This week, K9-cop “Sammy” tossed his collar into this race. FYI: This town’s 2,600 residents haven’t lost their minds. This race is all in good fun. The Burlington Free Press says the town manager created an honorary four-legged mayor in 2019 to get school kids (and some parents) involved in local government. It’s also helping raise $80,000 to refurbish a local playground. “Mayor Lincoln” has raised $10,000 with public appearances and promoting a GoFundMe page. More cash will be raised at March 3 election as voters pony-up $1 to cast a ballot for Lincoln or Sammy.
THIS DAY IN HISTORY
It was this day in 1973 that a concert crowd got its first look at spitting blood, wagging tongues and shooting pyrotechnics from guitars, as KISS took the stage for the very first time, at the Coventry Club in Queens.
WORD OF THE DAY
Gist – [JIST] – noun
Definition: The main point or essence
Example: What is the gist of today’s newsletter?
WIT OF THE DAY
“A nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought. The only value in our two nations possessing nuclear weapons is to make sure they will never be used. But then would it not be better to do away with them entirely?”
― Ronald Reagan
“Why can’t we use nuclear weapons?”
- Donald J. Trump
WEATHER IN A WORD
THE NEW 60
A Jaffe Briefing Exclusive
by Andy Landorf & John Colquhoun