Jaffe Morning Briefing

March 22, 2019

HAMILTON - There are nearly 11,000 people employed at NJ Transit, yet not one of them has the responsibility of opening the Hamilton train station each morning. Rather, NJ.com reports, that task is delegated to the people who work at Dunkin' Donuts. No sugarcoating here, NJ Transit freely admits ...

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STATEWIDE - President Trump was busy attacking the news media yet again yesterday, as he continues to claim any negative reporting about his administration is "fake." Yes, this continues to be dangerous stuff, as the president is the zen master in breezily dismissing cold, hard fact as fanciful ...

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Welcome to the International Day of Happiness! This year's theme? "Happier Together!" Spring arrives, thankfully, at 5:58 p.m. MONROE - This town's mayor has devised a clever new strategy to block overdevelopment: fighting for the nesting grounds of a local bald eagle, TAPInto New ...

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HOBOKEN - Aww, c'mon. That's really the only thing one guy can say, after Google Maps somehow caught him in mid-fall. Up through 8 p.m. yesterday, if you typed "725 Willow Ave. Hoboken, New Jersey" in Google Maps and clicked "street view," this is what appeared. Really, what are the ...

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TRENTON - The state is going to the dogs, which apparently have a terrific lobbyist in Trenton. Somehow, Fido, Rover and other four-legged friends have convinced lawmakers in the Assembly Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee to support a bill that would limit the number of dogs euthanized ...

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STATEWIDE - Well, this changes everything. Apparently, we now have the go-ahead to give the middle finger to cops who routinely pull us over. A federal appeals court has ruled a Michigan woman's constitutional rights were violated when she gave the Jersey salute to a cop in 2017. At first, the ...

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CAMDEN - It was in 1997 when City Clerk Luis Pastoriza took a second jobas the registrar of vital statistics. And now he thinks it's about damn time he gets paid. Pastoriza is demanding to plead his case to a jury, claiming in a lawsuit that he has been flatly denied compensation for those 22 years ...

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TRENTON - Fixing what ain't broke remains a favorite pastime of our stateLegislature, with some senators trying to ram through legislation tomorrow that would allow public schools to operate public child care centers for babies as young as six weeks old. Huh? Such a bill would require taxpayers to ...

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STATEWIDE - Gun owners are furious that Gov. Phil Murphy is proposing$9 million more in gun fees and taxes, noting it now costs less to get a handgun permit than a dog license in New Jersey.  The more the opposition complains about the bill, the more it seems like an absolutely terrific idea. Case ...

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STATEWIDE - Hey, did you hear this one: "A minister, a rabbi and an imam pull into a parking lot... and they are all taxed."  It's no joke, contends NJ.com, which reports the new Trump tax rules regard free parking at houses of worship to be a taxable benefit for employees. The law slaps a 21 ...

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PRINCETON - So, the sale of a choir college will bring down the United States? Apparently so, says two Republican lawmakers from Sussex County. They are trying to block the sale of Westminster Choir College to Chinese Communists. Assemblymen Hal Wirths and Parker Space say the buyer, Kaiwen ...

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TRENTON - Is is possible to be excited about a proposed state budget? Likely not, but perhaps the words "mildly enthused" can be attributed to the $38.6 billion spending plan that Gov. Phil Murphy presented yesterday for fiscal 2020. Yeah, it is a mish-mash of plenty of perceived, pie-in-the-sky ...

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OFF THE RAILS - It is early in the state's budget season. Very, very early. But Gov. Phil Murphy knows it is political suicide to attempt to dare raise fares on NJ Transit, as commuters have been clinging to their last nerve for years. His fiscal 2020 budget throws $100 million at the beleaguered ...

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PERTH AMBOY - You'd expect any freshman legislator to quietly sit in the back of the room, listen intently and perhaps co-sponsor a bill or two. But Assemblywoman Yvonne Lopez - who joined the Assembly last year to serve the 19thLegislative District, appears to be anywhere and everywhere. She ...

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TRENTON - It's that time of the year to talk green, as the three Irish guys who run New Jersey will be hashing out the fiscal 2020 budget. It all begins tomorrow when Gov. Phil Murphy delivers his annual budget address, kicking off all the negotiations and deliberations with Senate President Steve ...

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EN ROUTE TO NJ - With another Walk to Washington in the books, the many, many attendees who didn't bother to attend the annual dinner at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel have taken their aspirin, drank a bottle of water and are are now wondering: what did the governor say during the keynote address? ...

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NEWARK - Here, have a sandwich. That simple act of kindness is what fuels Bridges Outreach, a non-profit that brings volunteers into the heart of Newark, Irvington and NYC to directly help the homeless where they live. This street outreach hands out 65,000 brown bag meals, 10,000 pairs of socks and ...

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GALLOWAY - Not long ago, it was frowned upon for college students to sit in dorm room all day, eating Cheetos and playing video games.  But now, with the evolution of "Esports," universities are creating these gamer havens. At Stockton University, for example, students who have absolutely no ...

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STATEWIDE - So, after decades of traffic, taxes and more traffic, it looks like New Jerseyans have had it. A new poll from Monmouth University says only 50 percent of us think New Jersey is a good place to live. That's a huge drop from the 1980s - when we were all so giddy with the Brendan Byrne ...

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LACEY - Honey! Like my new shoes? We are saving soooo much in property taxes!  Huh?  Yes, Lacey officials are launching The Estate Card, a debit card for residents. When residents use the card to buy products at Macy's, Walmart and about 3,000 other quality retailers nationally, they receive ...

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AT THE POLLS - Jump in your time machine to Nov. 3, 2020. You are at the polls, ready to vote for President. You pass through that red curtain and scan the screen. Wait! Donald Trump is not listed as a candidate for President? Could that be??  Possibly, yes, if some New Jersey Democrats have their ...

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ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS - The mayor is taking heat for panicking too much, apparently unable to take the heat at council meetings. Shouting matches and bickering have prompted Mayor Mario Kranjac to hit a secret "panic button" under the council dais eight or nine times over the past year, The ...

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TRENTON - It was 105 years ago that Uncle Sam adopted its first drug laws, courtesy of President Woodrow Wilson. The law was fueled by frenzied, blatant racism: a crackdown to save White women from drug-peddling Mexicans and deranged Chinamen. (No, we are not making this up.) Fast forward to 2019: ...

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STATEWIDE - To mark President's Day, New Jersey sued the President of the United States. While New Jerseyans were out buying discounted televisions and dishwashers to mark yesterday's big holiday, the state joined 15 other states to sue the President over his Trumped-up national "emergency" to fund ...

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TRENTON - In December, that blender seemed the perfect holiday gift. But it's mid-February, and it still hasn't arrived on your doorstep. Hmmm. You may be a victim of "porch piracy," and Assemblyman Rob Karabinchak wants to be your hero. The Edison-based lawmaker is proposing stiffer penalties for ...

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NEWARK - In another "only in Newark" story, questions are swirling over yet another land deal. NJ.com is reporting how Newark sold a parcel to its parking authority for just a $1 less than two years ago. Now city officials want to lease it back - for more than $27 million over 30 years. Huh? Here ...

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STATEWIDE - One must assume there are plenty of perks to servingin Congress. It's why so many candidates willingly bankrupt themselves, ignore their families and beg for money for a chance to run for office. But, with House members up for re-election every two years, and practically every person in ...

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STATEWIDE - Free money! Tax cuts! Now that we have your attention, let's talk about accounting. No, no, stick with us here. It is tax time once again, so we're talking about Trump's promises last year of widespread tax "cuts." Most people recently polled by Politico have no clue if all this hot air ...

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Monday, Feb. 11 Chris Kattan Live at The Stress Factory 7:30 p.m.  Where: Stress Factory Chris Kattan is best known as one of the longest serving cast members on NBC's "Saturday Night Live." In the eight years Chris starred in the landmark late-night program, he became best known for his ...

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STATEWIDE - Baby boomers: Your days are numbered. At some point this year - at a moment no one will notice - the amount of millennials will quietly surpass the number of baby boomers, the Pew Research Center reports. It will be a quiet handing of the torch, leaving a fresh new generation to deal ...

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