OUR TAKE ON THE NEWS IN NEW JERSEY
ON THE TOWN - Nothing says you're a hopeless (or hapless) romantic like taking that special someone to White Castle for Valentine's Day. The state's 33 White Castles will be decked out for tomorrow's 26th annual dining extravaganza. We're talking romantic décor, hostess seating, table service, candlelight, and a specialty menu with items like shrimp nibblers, chicken rings, and strawberry-n-cream waffles in addition to the usual heart-stopping menu. Reservations, of course, are a must. And remember to generously tip the maître d' for window seating.
SEASIDE HEIGHTS - While other shore towns are focused on keeping ice off streets, this town is figuring how to make summer rentals more expensive. The Borough Council just slapped a new 3 percent occupancy tax on motel and hotel rooms. It may soon do the same to weekly and monthly rentals in private residences. This local tax is on top of the state's 7 percent hotel tax and is very similar to one Point Pleasant Beach imposed to raise $340,000 last year. Borough Administrator Christopher Vas tells ShoreBeat that Seaside Heights needs more revenue since Superstore Sandy wreaked havoc with its ratables. Or, it's just a big money grab.
GLEN ROCK - We all support the thin "blue line," but where to draw it? For instance, a retired cop just filed suit, saying this borough owes him $37,000 for unused sick and vacation days. The 27-year police veteran says town leaders are also holding up his state pension. Here's the rub: The cop is in the slammer, doing three years after pleading guilty to sending lewd texts and naked photos to two teenage girls and to pawning guns that were supposed to be destroyed. The cop's lawyer tells The Record he's "entitled to (the money) under contract. It was promised to him and should be given to him." True. But he also promised to uphold the law.
MORRISTOWN - The treats are piling up in the office of Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen, as an activist group is desperate to chat about his efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, NJ.com reports. On Friday, the group brought a cake. Two weeks ago, it was cookies, in this congenial way to make a point. Other GOP lawmakers in New Jersey are also getting some lip service regarding their stance to the health care law. And it is all perfect timing for the annual "Capitol Conference," beginning this morning in Washington, where the New Jersey Association of Health Underwriters will be meeting with congressional members (or their designated underlings) to try to figure out where this law is headed.
TRENTON - It's been well-documented that Gov. Chris Christie has little need or desire to chat up the New Jersey media. So, for them to get some morsel of news, expect these weary scribes to be listening intently to tonight's "Ask the Governor" show on NJ 101.5 at 7 p.m. The governor often uses the call-in show to demonstrate his accessibility to the media - as long as there is a friendly moderator, a volume control and a well-timed commercial break.
IN OTHER IMPORTANT NEWS
WASHINGTON - Unclear how many people are flocking to the Library of Congress to purchase a poster of Donald J. Trump with one of his inspirational quotes that includes, of course, the word "great." But the Library of Congress is a little embarrassed this morning. In the rush to get the poster to market, assuming so many would be clamoring at the gates, it includes a minor misspelling. It says (get ready to salute here): "No dream is too big, no challenge is to great. Nothing we want for the future is beyond our reach." The phrase should be "too great." The item has been removed from the shelves, offering a nifty collector's edition for those lucky enough to own an original.
THIS DAY IN HISTORY
It was on this day in 2011 that North Korea and South Korea formed one table tennis team, making us take the giant leap that the merged team was called "Korea."
WORD OF THE DAY
Weltanschauung [VELT-ahn-show-ung ("ow" as in "cow")] - noun
Definition: a comprehensive conception
Example: In my personal weltanschauung, Korean table tennis would usurp the NFL for the Monday night lineup on ESPN.
WEATHER IN A WORD