Nikita Biryukov

Nikita Biryukov

Nikita Biryukov most recently covered state government and politics for the New Jersey Globe. His tenure there included revelatory stories on marijuana legalization, voting reform and Rep. Jeff Van Drew's decamp to the Republican Party. Earlier, he worked as a freelancer for The Home News Tribune and The Press of Atlantic City.

Bill allowing policyholder suits over slow insurance claims advances

By: - December 15, 2021

New Jerseyans could soon sue their own insurance carriers for slow-rolling select claims involving uninsured drivers. The Assembly Financial Institutions and Insurance Committee on Monday advanced a bill that would allow policyholders to sue their carriers for unreasonably slow responses or unreasonable denials of claims involving an uninsured or underinsured driver. Such plaintiffs do not […]

Bill expanding SNAP to more college students advances

By: - December 14, 2021

Assembly lawmakers took another step toward loosening work requirements for college students in need of nutritional assistance Monday. In a near unanimous vote Monday, the Assembly Appropriations Committee advanced a bill that would allow students at higher education institutions, including community colleges, to qualify for the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) without meeting a 20-hour […]

Bill would bar reductions to civil damages based on race, gender in some cases

By: - December 13, 2021

Lawmakers appear poised to dramatically shift how damages are awarded in certain civil cases by ending a practice critics say leads to legal settlements driven by bias. Assembly and Senate panels this month advanced a bill that would bar reductions in damages paid for lost earnings based on race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and gender […]

Republican suit over Statehouse vaccine rules won’t be heard until April

By: - December 10, 2021

A Republican lawsuit against the Statehouse’s new vaccine rules won’t be heard until next year, according to a scheduling order filed Friday. Incoming minority leaders Assemblyman John DiMaio (R-Warren) and Sen. Steve Oroho (R-Sussex) last week filed a suit against rules requiring legislators, staff, and visitors be vaccinated against COVID-19 or submit proof of a […]

Lawmakers may weaken ratepayer advocate’s focus on affordability

By: - December 10, 2021

New Jersey is taking the first steps in a potential overhaul of the state’s lone utility consumer advocate that would see the Division of the Rate Counsel give greater weight to environmental and equity issues, a move detractors warn could lead to larger rate hikes. The Senate Environment and Energy Committee heard testimony Thursday on a […]

Singleton to introduce second bill that would OK early vote counting

By: - December 8, 2021

A proposal from a Democratic lawmaker would allow election officials to tally mail-in ballots and early in-person votes before polls close on Election Day. The measure, sponsored by state Sen. Troy Singleton (D-Burlington), would allow county election boards to begin canvassing vote-by-mail ballots starting 10 days before Election Day and count early in-person votes starting […]

Lawmaker, advocates urge creation of drug affordability board

By: - December 7, 2021

Jared Schechtel was forced to make a difficult choice: his health or his finances. As a teenager, the 23-year-old developed Crohn’s disease, an autoimmune disorder that inflames the gastrointestinal tract, and he later developed opsoclonus myoclonus syndrome, a rare neurological disorder. “I get bi-monthly Remicade infusions that cost about $35,000 for each one. This means […]

Lawmakers make bipartisan push on tenant tax relief

By: - December 7, 2021

Lawmakers are making a bipartisan push to amp up a tax deduction for renters. The Senate Community and Urban Affairs Committee on Monday unanimously approved a bill increasing the amount of rent residents can deduct from their taxes. “Everyone focuses on property tax relief for homeowners,” said Assemblyman Chris DePhillips (R-Bergen), the bill’s chief Assembly […]

Bill would allow mail-in ballots to be counted before Election Day

By: - December 6, 2021

After widespread dismay about lagging and often opaque vote counts, a Republican legislator plans to introduce a bill Monday that would allow county election officials to begin tallying vote-by-mail ballots before Election Day. The measure, sponsored by Assemblyman Christopher DePhillips (R-Bergen), would permit county election boards to open and canvass mail-in ballots as they are […]

Incoming Senate president wants election law reform done before Jan. 11

By: - December 3, 2021

The incoming president of the New Jersey Senate wants to reform the state’s campaign finance system, and he’d like to see those changes made before new lawmakers are sworn in on Jan. 11. “If we can make it happen and really spend the time that we need to drill down on these important issues, I […]

Legislature approves bill expanding child tax credit

By: - December 3, 2021

A fracas over Statehouse vaccine rules waylaid much of the Assembly’s legislative agenda for Thursday, but the chamber did clear a handful of bills. Lawmakers in both chambers unanimously approved a bill expanding New Jersey’s child tax credit. Residents with annual taxable income of $150,000 or less will be eligible for the tax credit. The […]

Chaotic day in Trenton as Republicans cry ‘tyranny’ over vax rules

By: , and - December 2, 2021

Republican lawmakers had a heated standoff with state troopers in the Statehouse Thursday after flouting a new policy requiring them to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test to enter the legislative chambers. The ruckus began when lawmakers were getting ready to take their seats ahead of their 1 p.m. session. Eight troopers […]