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Re: ‘Massive’ $120M budget shortfall is subject of special Jersey City BOE meeting
#31
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More than 600 Jersey City school district employees would be laid off under initial BOE budget

JERSEY CITY — More than 600 school district employees would be laid off and residents’ school tax would increase by 10 percent under a proposed budget that was sent to the county for approval Wednesday night.

The Board of Education, facing a $120 million budget shortfall and “draconian” reductions to state aid, presented a preliminary budget that — if adopted in May — would see 450 instructional staff positions, including teachers and teacher’s aides, and 260 central administration and non-instructional staff positions eliminated throughout the district.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/03/more ... eliminary-boe-budget.html


Posted on: 3/21 14:32
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Re: Jersey City’s Hot Waterfront Lands a 13-Vendor Food Hall
#32
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New York City’s Food Hall Trend Migrates to the Suburbs and Beyond

Food halls are opening in locales well outside Manhattan and Brooklyn

In recent years, Manhattan and Brooklyn real-estate developers and culinary professionals have embraced the food hall, the dining concept that offers a gourmet take on the food courts of suburban malls.

Now, in a twist on the trend, food halls are opening in locales well outside those two boroughs, including in the suburbs.

Bell Market bowed last year in a historic Holmdel, N.J., building, with offerings that include wood-fired pizza and sushi hand rolls. Queens Crossing, a mixed-use project in Flushing, introduced an Asian-themed food hall in 2016, building upon what was previously a modest array of dining options at the development.

Food halls are planned everywhere from the South Bronx to another location in Flushing. And in Jersey City, N.J., an ambitious 12,750-square-foot hall, District Kitchen, is set to open March 25 at Harborside, the waterfront office development.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/new-york- ... bs-and-beyond-11553009829


Posted on: 3/20 16:36
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‘Massive’ $120M budget shortfall is subject of special Jersey City BOE meeting
#33
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‘Massive’ $120M budget shortfall is subject of special Jersey City BOE meeting

The Jersey City Board of Education will hold a special meeting Wednesday afternoon to determine how to plug a $120 million hole in the 2019/2020 budget.

The nine-member school board that presides over the 30,000-student district will vote on an interim budget for next school year and send it to the county superintendent for approval.

The district is set to lose $27 million in state aid next year, more than what was originally anticipated when the city enacted a payroll tax to help offset the state funding cuts. But the Jersey City Public Schools are also expected to lose about $6.5 million in state funding because an increase in enrollment in local charter schools, Board of Education President Sudhan Thomas said.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/03/mass ... sey-city-boe-meeting.html


Posted on: 3/20 16:33
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Jersey City school board votes to allow members with conflicts of interest to vote on teachers union
#34
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Jersey City school board votes to allow members with conflicts of interest to vote on teachers union pact

JERSEY CITY — The school board voted Thursday to allow its members who were supported by the local teachers union to vote on the new union contract, which could be finalized later this year.

The approved measure is known as the doctrine of necessity, which is invoked when a quorum of the board has conflicts of interest that prevent it from voting on a specific matter. Absent Thursday’s action, only four board members would be able to vote on the teachers union contract because the other five have conflicts. The contract expires in June.

Thursday’s measure was approved with little discussion by a 7-1 vote, with Matt Schapiro voting no. He is one of the non-conflicted members.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/03/jers ... -teachers-union-pact.html


Posted on: 3/10 15:22
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Re: For six years, Jersey City schools chief was at center of conflict
#35
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Only in Hudson County? 2 school superintendents getting paid $200K+ to sit at home

Hudson County has 10 school superintendents right now and two of them are getting paid six-figure salaries for not working.

Jersey City’s superintendent, Marcia V. Lyles, who was dismissed by Jersey City’s school board in January but is still getting paid her $231,000 salary, plus benefits. The board can’t fire her without getting the state involved, so it is keeping her on the payroll until her contract expires … in June 2020.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/03/only ... -200k-to-sit-at-home.html


Posted on: 3/9 2:55
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Re: For third time since July, a Jersey City school board member resigns
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Jersey City school board appoints another new member

The Jersey City Board of Education appointed its newest member Thursday, one week after Luis F. Fernandez Jr. announced his resignation from the nine-member panel.

During a special meeting at School 26, former Board of Education employee Gevonder Dupree was tapped to fill the seat vacated by Fernandez. The board voted 7-1 in favor of her appointment, with Matthew Schapiro as the lone dissenting vote.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/03/jers ... s-another-new-member.html


Posted on: 3/9 2:49
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Jersey City council wants passage of Liberty State Park Protection Act
#37
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Jersey City council wants passage of Liberty State Park Protection Act

JERSEY CITY — The City Council is urging state lawmakers to pass the Liberty State Park Protection Act, a bill aimed at halting private development at the 1,200-acre state park located in Jersey City.

The nine-member body unanimously approved a resolution at its Wednesday meeting asking the state Legislature to pass the bill (A-4903), an act applauded by longtime park advocate Sam Pesin. Pesin has spent decades fighting plans to add commercial ventures to the park.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/02/jers ... -park-protection-act.html


Posted on: 3/2 15:20
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For third time since July, a Jersey City school board member resigns
#38
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For third time since July, a Jersey City school board member resigns

JERSEY CITY — Another Jersey City school board member has quit the board early, becoming the third resignation from the nine-member body since July.

Luis F. Fernandez Jr., who was elected to the board in 2016 and had 10 months left on his term, resigned effective immediately in a letter he emailed to board members Thursday morning.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/02/for- ... board-member-resigns.html


Posted on: 3/2 15:14
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Re: Jersey City school board member subject of ethics complaint
#39
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Testimony ends in ethics hearing for Jersey City school board VP

JERSEY CITY — Jersey City’s school board vice president, Lorenzo Richardson, testified at an administrative law hearing Friday morning that he believed he was acting properly when he filed a legal complaint against district officials in 2016.

Richardson testified he thought he had the authorization of the then-board president, Vidya Gangadin, and then-board counsel, Ramon Rivera, when he filed the complaint against them. State ethics laws bar board members from taking actions against their boards.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/03/test ... city-school-board-vp.html


Posted on: 3/2 15:09
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The new $480M Wittpenn Bridge construction is a year behind. Why? It’s complicated.
#40
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The new $480M Wittpenn Bridge construction is a year behind. Why? It’s complicated.

Lift bridges -- those hulking steel spans that have a center section that rises and lowers to let boat traffic pass -- are complicated structures. A new one being built in Hudson County is so complex, it is off its original construction schedule by at least a year.

The new Route 7 Wittpenn Bridge was originally scheduled to open to traffic this year. Instead, the lift section of the bridge that was supposed to be hoisted in place last year is still sitting on a barge, waiting. And officials project it won’t be open to traffic until 2020.

https://www.nj.com/traffic/2019/03/the ... -why-its-complicated.html


Posted on: 3/2 15:02
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Re: Jersey City Approves New Contract for Police Benevolent Association Through 2025 Impacting Nearly 70
#41
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Jersey City council approves new cop contract

JERSEY CITY — A new contract with the city’s roughly 700 police officers received nearly unanimous approval by the City Council last week, ending one dispute between the Fulop administration and the city’s police force.

The contract comes nearly two years early — the previous pact between the city and the Jersey City Police Officer Benevolent Association was set to expire in December 2020. But the Jersey City POBA was challenging the older agreement in court, an appeal the union has agreed to end with approval of the new contract.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/02/jers ... ves-new-cop-contract.html


Posted on: 2/25 15:25
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Pay hike for Jersey City public safety director puts him in $200K club
#42
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Pay hike for Jersey City public safety director puts him in $200K club

JERSEY CITY — Jersey City Public Safety Director James Shea joined a very exclusive club this year when he became one of three city workers to make more than $200,000.

Shea’s pay received a 2.5 percent boost to $200,200 for 2019, making him the third highest paid person on the city’s payroll. Only Police Chief Mike Kelly and Fire Chief Steve McGill make more, at $213,454 each.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/02/pay- ... uts-him-in-200k-club.html


Posted on: 2/25 15:19
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4 Dickinson High students accused of hacking computer system, changing grades
#43
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4 Dickinson High students accused of hacking computer system, changing grades

Four Jersey City high school students have been charged after authorities say they accessed the public school district’s computer system and changed grades for some students, The Jersey Journal has learned.

According to a source in the school district, board of education members were notified by email Friday afternoon that four Dickinson High School students had been arrested earlier in the day. Jersey City school officials and a spokeswoman for the police department did not return requests for more information.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/02/4-di ... stem-changing-grades.html


Posted on: 2/25 15:13
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Re: Four JC Cops Indicted on Numerous Charges
#44
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Cops cleared in criminal case are battling Jersey City over back pay

JERSEY CITY — Two Jersey City cops cleared of criminal charges in October are embroiled in a new legal fight over whether the city should have to pay them two years of back pay and reimburse their legal fees.

The cops — Lt. Kelly Chesler and Officer Michael O’Neill — have sued the city to get paid, but the city has called the lawsuits “premature” and wants a judge to dismiss them.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/02/cops ... y-city-over-back-pay.html


Posted on: 2/13 16:25
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Re: Murder at Portside
#45
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Man in prison for 2007 murder in Downtown Jersey City will get new trial

A man serving a 30-year prison sentence for killing a man inside a Downtown Jersey City luxury high rise will get a new trial after the state’s appellate division ruled that jurors were not told they could consider the possibility the killing was in self-defense.

The appellate decision, which was issued Thursday, means Zia Berisha will again stand trial for the murder of Michael Marro Jr., 39, who was found dead in his Warren Street home on Nov. 6, 2007.

Berisha’s trial attorney’s “failure to request a jury instruction on this defense prejudiced defendant’s right to a fair trial,” the appellate court ruled.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/02/man- ... y-will-get-new-trial.html


Posted on: 2/13 16:23
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Re: New York Times: Possible Second Life for Stalled Xanadu Project?
#46
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After 16 Years of Construction, American Dream Mall Will Finally Open. Will it Work?

Shopping malls might be living a nightmare, but New Jersey’s American Dream Mall is trying to do something bigger, better and more entertaining. Will it succeed?

The American Dream Mall—once given a deadline to open in 2014 when the Super Bowl was played in New Jersey—has become the butt of many Northern New Jersey residents’ jokes. It’s been empty for years, little more than a garish, multi-colored eyesore to the drivers on the New Jersey Turnpike.

But finally, after 16 years of starts and stops, missed deadlines, three developers, five governors and a major retail contraction, current developer Triple Five claims the $5 billion American Dream Mall in East Rutherford, N.J., will open its 3.1-million-square-foot center in April. That includes 1.5 million square feet of retail, the largest indoor amusement park in the Western Hemisphere, an indoor ski lift, a DreamWorks-branded indoor waterpark, a Cirque du Soleil venue and a National Hockey League-sized ice rink. Subsequent phases call for two hotels and a convention center.

“There’s a lot that you can see with your eye to let you know this thing is coming soon,” said David Townes, a senior director of retail at Cushman & Wakefield whose office is next to the American Dream site in the Meadowlands Complex.

But even as it nears the finish line, not everybody’s convinced the American Dream Mall will really come to fruition. (At least not on the April timetable.)

“We’ve been told this story a gazillion times,” Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, who recently criticized the project on Twitter, told Commercial Observer. “I gloss over these dates on when they’re projected to open.”

https://commercialobserver.com/2019/02 ... inally-open-will-it-work/


Posted on: 2/13 16:19
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Re: For six years, Jersey City schools chief was at center of conflict
#47
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For fourth time, Jersey City school board votes to get rid of superintendent

JERSEY CITY — Maybe the fourth time will be the charm?

The Jersey City school board on Monday passed its fourth resolution since Jan. 31 that tosses Marcia V. Lyles as the district’s superintendent.

The vote was unanimous, with the board’s lone supporter of Lyles, Matt Schapiro, absent. There was no discussion.

The board’s repeated votes to get rid of Lyles come as her allies accuse board members of deposing her illegally.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/02/for- ... id-of-superintendent.html


Posted on: 2/13 16:11
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Re: Fulop and the ‘Fight for Fifteen’
#48
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Murphy signs bill to boost New Jersey’s minimum wage to $15

By Updated 02/04/2019 02:24 PM EST

Gov. Phil Murphy signed legislation Monday that will gradually raise New Jersey’s minimum wage to $15 an hour for most workers by 2024, making it the fourth state to approve a policy that not long ago was considered a pipe dream in Democratic circles.

“It is a great day to make history for New Jersey’s working families,” Murphy said in an auditorium in Elizabeth that was bursting with supporters and had the feel of a pep rally. “We’ve talked long enough about putting New Jersey on a responsible path to raising the minimum wage. Today we start on this path.”

This bill signing culminates more than a year of negotiations and is a major victory for Murphy and the state’s Democrat-controlled Legislature. It also puts New Jersey on a growing list of blue states — California, Massachusetts and New York, as well as the District of Columbia — that have authorized such a jump in the minimum wage.

https://www.politico.com/states/new-je ... minimum-wage-to-15-836467


Posted on: 2/6 12:17
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Re: Legal Weed Is Coming to New Jersey
#49
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Expungement must be a part of new pot law | Jersey Journal editorial

When it comes to proposed marijuana legalization legislation, we stand with the mayors of the state’s two biggest cities in their demand that automatic and immediate expungement for certain past convictions be included.

Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop and Newark Mayor Ras Baraka held a joint appearance last week vowing that they won’t allow marijuana dispensaries in their cities if stronger social justice provisions aren’t included in the legal pot legislation that eventually becomes law in New Jersey.

https://www.nj.com/opinion/2019/02/exp ... ey-journal-editorial.html


Posted on: 2/6 12:11
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Re: Sweeney proposes slapping payroll tax on Jersey City businesses to fund schools
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Payroll tax is the best option to fund Jersey City schools | Opinion

According to the new school funding formula, Jersey City is dramatically overfunded, but when you look around at our public schools that doesn’t seem to be the case. Our students are being provided with a high quality education, because we want to ensure the best possible outcomes for every child. The district spending is not extravagant or careless. Still, over the course of the next seven years the school system will be weaned off of $175 million in state aid. This will give the city three options going forward.

We could’ve left the school district to fend for itself. Force them make due with a third of their current budget, and leave them to cut programs and stagnate their technology adoption. We could’ve raised property taxes to replace the lost state aid with local funding, which would have added another anchor to an already overburdened tax. Instead, we chose the third option – to take advantage of statewide legislation which allowed the city to establish a payroll tax. It was the only option that would not hurt our schools or burden the citizens of Jersey City.

The payroll tax is designed to benefit the people of Jersey City. Its revenue will go strictly to our schools, investing in our future and allowing us to continue offering a quality education to the children of our city. It is a minimal one percent tax so the impact on individual businesses is miniscule but in total, it will bring in enough money to offset the lost state aid. Lastly, and possibly most importantly, the tax would not apply to the payrolls of Jersey City residents. This is huge for our city, as it will essentially incentivize hiring from within the city.

Jersey City has become an extension of New York City. We are home to countless large corporations with people traveling to the city from all over North Jersey and Southern New York to work here. Over 90,000 people commute into Hudson County every day. Unfortunately, none of those people are contributing to our tax base. While they spend their days in Jersey City, their property taxes are going to their hometowns. The payroll tax allows corporations to contribute to our community and invest in our children, our future.

The tax does not apply to residents of Jersey City, it is not simply a one percent tax on a company’s entire payroll, but rather a one percent tax on the salaries of people not living in the city. The benefit to residents is two-fold, the money will fund the school district without raising taxes, and it encourages companies to hire from our community. These companies offer high wage jobs and encouraging them to hire more people from Jersey City will continue to bolster our local economy. When more people live and work in Jersey City, more money gets reinvested into local shops and businesses, keeping the money here is good for all of us.

When I first saw the numbers for the new school funding formula my mind was reeling. I was determined, however, to find a way to continue offering our district a sufficient budget without penalizing the people of Jersey City. Raising taxes was never an option, it would only make the area less affordable and hurt the children and families I was looking to help. Cutting the budget was not a viable option either, as that, again, would hurt the public and make the city a less desirable place to live.

The payroll tax was then and still is, our best option. It is estimated to generate roughly $80 million a year which will soften the blow of the state funding cut and allow us to continue offering high quality education to all of our children. This is a long term, sustainable solution, with multifaceted benefits for our community. A one percent tax on a portion of companies’ payrolls is not going to drive business out of our city. For corporations, the additional tax is a drop in the bucket, but for the school district, the revenue will be the water that keeps it afloat.

Sandra Cunningham is a New Jersey State Senator serving the 31st Legislative District. She resides is Jersey City.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/01/payr ... city-schools-opinion.html


Posted on: 2/3 16:23
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Re: For six years, Jersey City schools chief was at center of conflict
#51
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Jersey City school board sinks to new low | Jersey Journal editorial

The Jersey City school board hit a new low Thursday night when members bowed to ugly pressure from the teachers union and fired Superintendent of Schools Marcia Lyles.

The ax fell just hours after it was learned that Lyles is suing the board and the union, charging her civil rights have been violated and alleging harassment and a hostile workplace, among other things.

Hostile is an understatement.

https://www.nj.com/opinion/2019/02/jer ... ey-journal-editorial.html


Posted on: 2/3 15:47
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Re: Journal Squared Project to Begin
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Murray Kushner’s KRE snags $258M loan for phase II of massive Jersey City project

The second phase at Journal Squared is slated to open in 2021
By Meenal Vamburkar | January 25, 2019 09:00AM

The KRE Group has landed funding for the second phase of its massive Jersey City rental development.

The firm secured $258 million in construction financing, KRE said in a state ment Friday. Wells Fargo and Capital One provided the loan.

The funding will be used for Tower Two at Journal Squared, a mixed-use project comprised of three buildings with 1,840 rental units in total. Tower Two will stand 71 stories tall, with 704 residences, and is slated to open in 2021.

“The closing of this loan signifies another important milestone for the Journal Squared development,” Jonathan Kushner, president of KRE Group, said in the statement. “Construction of the second tower is already well underway and we look forward to bringing it to completion.”

https://therealdeal.com/2019/01/25/mur ... sive-jersey-city-project/


Posted on: 1/27 15:30
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Re: PATH (pathetic attempt at transporting humans)
#53
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Upgrading the PATH System

The general manager of the commuter line says the New York-New Jersey region depends on investments in infrastructure.

To the Editor:

Re “Even With Packed Trains, PATH Will Lose $400 Million This Year” (news article, Jan. 3):

Commuter railroads keep the region moving in a safe and reliable manner. And it’s no secret that, like all major passenger railroads in the United States, they operate at a deficit and require significant subsidies. PATH is no different, and the amount of expenses it recovers through fares is on par with other American transit systems.

But the benefit it provides goes well beyond an affordable ride in or out of New York and to Newark, Harrison, Jersey City and Hoboken, 24/7.

In 2017, PATH’s yearly ridership numbers approached 83 million, compared with 73.7 million in 2014, an 11 percent increase in just three years. That’s because major new building developments were built precisely because of their proximity to a PATH station. The residents who have since flocked to them and become riders are a true testament to the system’s value.

As these communities grow, we must continue to invest in infrastructure built more than 100 years ago — from station upgrades, to critical repairs, to modern signaling systems and safety technology. The region depends upon it.

Michael Marino
Jersey City
The writer is director and general manager of the Port Authority Trans-Hudson Corporation.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/24/opi ... -new-jersey-new-york.html


Posted on: 1/25 1:35
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Re: JC Woman Accuses Murphy Staffer of Rape
#54
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‘I went from numb to angry to crying.’ Katie Brennan rips latest decision by prosecutor not to pursue rape case.

Katie Brennan was driving to a meeting Wednesday afternoon when her attorney called to say it was all over: the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office had decided the man she accused of rape —a former senior official who worked for Gov. Phil Murphywould not face criminal charges.

“I went from numb to angry to crying – wildly crying — on my way to a meeting,” Brennan told NJ Advance Media on Thursday. She immediately called her husband. “He cried,” she said.

https://www.nj.com/news/2019/01/i-went ... -to-pursue-rape-case.html


Posted on: 1/25 1:26
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Re: ‘My name is Amy, not Tom DeGise’
#55
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HCDO Chair Amy DeGise announces plans to resign from Jersey City BOE seat

0
Hudson County Democratic Organization Chair Amy DeGise has announced that she will be resigning from her seat on the Jersey City Board of Education on February 1st to focus more time on building the local party.
https://hudsoncountyview.com/hcdo-chai ... rom-jersey-city-boe-seat/

Posted on: 1/24 5:23
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Re: Jersey City fighting $2.7M court award over Journal Square property
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N.J. Supreme Court won’t hear $2 million tax case out of Jersey City

JERSEY CITY — The New Jersey Supreme Court last week declined to weigh in on a lower court’s ruling that requires Jersey City to repay $2 million to the developer behind a failed tower project in Journal Square.

An appellate panel in August ruled that it was grossly unfair for the city to take the $2 million — a prepayment of the payments-in-lieu-of-taxes the developer planned to owe the city — and it need to be given back. New Jersey Supreme Court Chief Justice Stuart Rabner said on Jan. 14 the decision would not be reviewed by the state’s highest court.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/01/nj-s ... e-out-of-jersey-city.html


Posted on: 1/24 5:17
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New Jersey-New York area lost 5,700 millionaires in 2018
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New Jersey-New York area lost 5,700 millionaires in 2018

, North Jersey Record Published 3:08 p.m. ET Jan.

The New Jersey area lost thousands of millionaires in 2018, even as their ranks grew worldwide. 

A tumultuous year for global stock markets and federal and state tax changes are responsible, experts say.

The New Jersey-New York population center that encompasses New York City, Jersey City and Newark last year lost more than 5,700 of its high-net-worth individuals with liquid assets of $1 million to $30 million, according to a new report from research firm Wealth-X.

Debra Taylor of Taylor Financial Group in Franklin Lakes said she has been advising many of her wealthy New Jersey clients to set up residency in other states. The loss of unlimited state and local tax deductions for the 2018 federal tax year is drastically elevating the metro area's already high cost of living for some, she said.

https://www.northjersey.com/story/news ... ionaires-2018/2605414002/


Posted on: 1/22 13:50
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N.J. councilman pleads not guilty to harassing campaign worker
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N.J. councilman pleads not guilty to harassing campaign worker

HOBOKEN — Jersey City’s council president, Rolando Lavarro, pleaded not guilty in municipal court Thursday morning after being accused of harassment by someone who worked for a rival campaign last year.

Rampaul Guyadeen, 58, a Jersey City man who has worked behind-the-scenes for local politicians, alleges Lavarro confronted him outside School 23 on Election Day and told him “I’m going to f*** you up” when their dispute escalated.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/01/nj-c ... sing-campaign-worker.html


Posted on: 1/18 15:06
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Re: I-Team: FBI Investigates Alleged Corruption in Jersey City Police Department
#59
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Jersey City cop unions plead with Fulop not to ax off-duty jobs

JERSEY CITY — The city’s police unions are threatening legal action if Mayor Steve Fulop dismantles the program that allows cops to work off-duty jobs.

Fulop vowed last February to phase out the program after a string of cops admitted using it as part of a criminal conspiracy.

In a letter sent to police precincts on Wednesday, Jersey City Police Officers Benevolent Association President Carmine Disbrow and Bobby Kearns, head of the Jersey City Police Superiors Association, say the matter will land in court.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/01/jers ... -to-ax-off-duty-jobs.html


Posted on: 1/18 14:59
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Chaos at Jersey City mall as shot fired
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Chaos at Jersey City mall as shot fired

Shots were fired at the Newport Centre mall in Jersey City on Friday, causing shoppers to flee and leading authorities to impose a lockdown, police sources said.

Gunfire erupted at the mall shortly after 6 p.m. Police recovered shell casings in the food court near the Hawaiian Grill, sources said.

There were reports of two victims. One person was shot in the arm, and was found in the mall. Another possible victim walked into a local hospital with a gunshot to the stomach, according to media reports.

https://www.nydailynews.com/news/crime ... chaos-20190111-story.html


Posted on: 1/12 0:33
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