The Jaffe Briefing - January 15, 2018



TRENTON - As state lawmakers are set to announce a bill at 11 a.m. to decriminalize pot - an issue that has consumed the Statehouse -  the Record is reporting on an often-ignored issue: the state's ridiculously antiquated liquor laws. For example, supermarkets in the state can only have up to two liquor licenses, stemming from a law created during the Kennedy Administration to appease the liquor store lobby and organized crime. So, in most towns in the state, people must buy their groceries in one place, and then run someplace else to get wine or beer. This flies in the face of logic, as well as the common practices in most states in the country, where people freely buy liquor in supermarkets. There is a bill in the state Legislature that would allow supermarket chains to finally have more liquor licenses - which would certainly put us all in better spirits.

TRENTON - As America comes to grip with the latest mass shooting, it is somewhat reassuring to know New Jersey has some of the strictest gun laws in the country. But with 2017 being the deadliest year for mass shootings in U.S. history, and 2018 off to an awful start, the Murphy administration is talking about additional safety measures. Ammunition limits, the adoption of smart gun technology and stricter concealed carry rules are all on the table, the Record reports, following a round-table discussion this week in Cherry Hill led by Assembly Majority Leader Lou Greenwald. In light of yesterday's tragedy in Parkland, Fla., and 273 school shootings nationwide since the unthinkable happened at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012, our hope is the gun lobby finally falls on deaf ears.

Sign Up for E-News

TRENTON - The state's health department has a $2.8 billion budget.So, a $7.5 million bill the Assembly is set to pass today shouldn't be newsworthy. Except it is, Politico notes, because the legislation will fund family planning services that Gov. Chris Christie had repeatedly cut from the state budget. It was widely considered a political move up by an aspirational Republican, eager to show hard-liners that, he too, can gut Planned Parenthood. The Democrat-controlled Legislature restored the budget line each year, but Christie continued to veto. Thankfully, to the relief of many women in this state, that veto pen has finally dried up.

JERSEY CITY - As the city wraps up the first complete citywide revaluation in 30 years, residents in the gleaming towers on the Hudson may be in for some sticker shock. There is talk the city's upscale downtown could take the biggest hit as property valuations potentially increase ten-fold to better align with the million-dollar views, concierge services and 24-hour freshly-ground espresso. In the spirit of fairness, property taxes could plunge by more than 60 percent in the city's low- and middle-income neighborhoods, evidence of who has been subsidizing all this glorious gentrification in recent decades, according to As our urban core continues to be reignited by martini-swilling professionals, expect this scenario to play out again and again.

MORRISTOWN - The former chief of Morristown Medical Center is learning about life in the Trump fish bowl, as Veterans Affairs Secretary. And now the world knows David Shulkin took a taxpayer-funded, $122,234 trip to Europe last July to participate in a summit in London. The Star-Ledger, on its front page, is telling everyone about Shulkin's tickets to Wimbledon and sightseeing around England and Copenhagen, accompanied by his wife and a traveling party, including security detail. The trip - of which about 65 percent appeared to be recreational - was all laid out in an inspector general's report. The publicity will hopefully be a red flag for other government leaders who consider a business trip to be a vacation on the taxpayer's dime.


CHESTERFIELD, ENGLAND - A British man thought he would dazzle his girlfriend this Valentine's Day weekend by whisking her off to Belfast to see the Red Hot Chili Peppers.  He plunked down his hard-earned money to buy a pair of tickets in Row Q. The couple then headed up to Belfast for the Feb. 10 show, soon realizing they had tickets to see "the Red Hot Chilli Pipers," a bagpipe cover band. Silver lining: the band considers itself, according to the website, as the "most famous bagpipe band on the planet."


It was this day in 1964 that a college basketball player named Bill Bradley put up 51 points for Princeton University.


Tetchy - [TETCH-y] - noun

Definition: Easily annoyed or irritated; peevish, testy or irascible 

Example: An awful lot of Wall Street wizards who reside in Jersey City may soon get tetchy when they see their next property tax bill.



Editor's Note:  Jaffe Communications is the franchisee/publisher of TAPinto New Brunswick.

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of or anyone who works for is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

New Brunswick

The Jaffe Briefing - April 24, 2018


STATEWIDE - Yeah, yeah, New Jersey has really high taxes. And, yeah, it is super expensive to live here. So, yet another study is out, with the American Legislative Exchange Council ranking New Jersey second-to-last among states in economic performance and 46th in economic outlook, ROI-NJ reports. The study, called "Rich States, Poor ...

The Jaffe Briefing - April 23, 2018


STATEWIDE - First, there was a turkey in every pot. Then there was the "Square Deal," the "New Deal" and now Sen. Cory Booker says it is time for government to offer a, uh, great deal: A job to anyone who wants one. He is proposing federal grants that would select 15 "local areas" in which adults could get a job at $15 an ...

The Jaffe Briefing - April 20, 2018


ON THE ROAD - It looks like a State Police trooper is going to have to head to the bars to pick up chicks, indicted yesterday for intentionally pulling over women in a desperate attempt to land dates. Internal affairs learned the Trooper was pulling over two lovely ladies at the end of 2016, threatening to arrest them if they didn't hand over their ...

The Jaffe Briefing - April 19, 2018


PLAINFIELD - Those who dabble in Union County politics are learning this morning that the former Democratic chairman, Jerry Green, has died at age 79 after a long illness. Green, a longtime assemblyman from Plainfield, rose through the ranks from serving on the freeholder board in the late 1980s.  He will be remembered as a Roselle native, a ...

The Jaffe Briefing - April 18, 2018


PATERSON - At campaign rallies, why not just cut to the chase? That's what's happening in the Silk City, where a local social media celebrity was handing out $20 bills to would-be voters at a rally on Sunday for mayoral contender Pedro Rodriguez. Our favorite entertainer of all time, Fatboy SSE, had a thick wad of cash, which he was passing out ...

The Jaffe Briefing - April 17, 2018


AT THE POLLING BOOTH - Guess what? New Jerseyans don't like the Trump tax plan. It's also not surprising that a potential voter revolt could flip all five of the state's Republican House seats, according to a new Monmouth University poll. reports that the new federal tax bill disproportionately hurts taxpayers in New Jersey ...

Rutgers professor named Pulitzer Prize finalist

April 19, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - For Evie Shockley, poetry – and her professorship at Rutgers University–New Brunswick – are central to her engagement with a world that needs change and central to the ways she prepares students to do their own engagement.

This week, Shockley was selected as a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in the poetry category. The Pulitzer ...

Rutgers Professor Elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

NEW BRUNSWICK - Helen M. Berman, Board of Governors distinguished professor emerita of chemistry and chemical Biology at Rutgers University–New Brunswick, has been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Berman is among 213 people elected to the academy this year, including author Ta-Nehisi Coates, actor Tom Hanks, President Barack Obama, Supreme ...

Questions now swirl around reported Rutgers theft

NEW BRUNSWICK - A crime alert issued by Rutgers police about an armed robbery on Tuesday April 10 has turned out to be false. 

Upon further investigation, police said the alleged incident in front of the Campbell Hall dorm on George Street did not happen as was initially reported. Police had said initially that the suspect showed a handgun, ordered the ...

NB Public Schools task force takes on chronic absenteeism

April 19, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK – Being absent for just two days each month means a student will miss 10 percent of the entire school year – enough to negatively impact that student’s academic performance.

It’s sobering information, and a clear demonstration that chronically absent students are at a tremendous educational disadvantage, one from which many of them will never recover.


Safe Sleep for Babies Requires Effort from All

April 10, 2018

For more than a decade, my organization, Keeping Babies Safe (KBS), has sounded the steady drumbeat of safe sleep awareness, which in turn has created bans on dangerous products and has helped enact laws that work to ensure babies are sleeping safely.

In 2018, KBS kicked off its latest awareness campaign designed to promote safe sleep practices and products ...

'Elementary, My Dear Watson!' Solving Mysteries with Genetic Geneaology

April 20, 2018

The next meeting of the New Brunswick Historical Society will be on Thursday, April 26 at 7:00 p.m. Andrew May will speak about Genetic Genealogy. Humans are 99.9% identical in their genetic makeup, yet, differences in 0.1% of our DNA has helped us answer questions about our recent and deep ancestral origins. Direct-to-consumer DNA testing provides the toolbox for solving difficult ...

Why People Should Visit Black Churches and Black People Should Welcome Them

March 29, 2018

Dear TAPInto New Brunswick,

In New Jersey, segregation is a cultural issue that demands the immediate attention of Christians. Nearly 87 percent of Christian churches in the U.S. are either made up of only white, or only African-American parishioners. When we worship in the comfortable bubble of segregation, we miss the opportunity for racial reconciliation, as mandated by Jesus:

"A ...