One-time aide to ex-state senator admits arranging political operative’s murder

BY: - January 25, 2022

Sean Caddle — a political consultant and one-time aide to former state Sen. Raymond Lesniak —admitted hiring two men to kill a Hudson County man in May 2014, federal authorities announced Tuesday. Caddle, 44, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit murder for hire, admitting he paid thousands to two men for killing […]

Affordability and taxes top agenda for new legislator from South Jersey

BY: - January 21, 2022

Beth Sawyer doesn’t need any data-packed reports or alarm-sounding researchers to know New Jersey’s high taxes have chased people out of the state. She’s helped them move. As a real estate broker in South Jersey for 27 years, Sawyer has been at the table as a parade of longtime New Jersey homeowners sign the sales […]

Activists incensed after N.J. fund for immigrant workers cut by 85%

BY: - January 20, 2022

Immigrant advocates expressed anger Wednesday over the state reallocating the majority of a $40 million fund for residents excluded from COVID-era relief, which advocates secured after 18 months of protests and a 24-day hunger strike. “We didn’t think it was real. We didn’t think it could be possible. Now, instead of fighting for more money […]

Gov. Murphy signs flurry of bills just before second term begins

BY: and - January 19, 2022

Gov. Phil Murphy signed a controversial law Tuesday that will allow New Jersey police officers to review their own body-camera footage before writing incident reports. Reformers fought the measure, fearing it would enable officers to omit details the camera didn’t capture and thereby evade accountability. Police unions pushed for it, saying it would improve the […]

New Monmouth assemblywoman sets sights on pandemic recovery

BY: - January 18, 2022

In the uproar over the pandemic’s impact on schools, there may be no more dreaded place to be than on a school board. Parents have packed meetings to demand or reject masking, vaccine mandates, and virtual learning. They’ve protested and threatened school board members. Sometimes, the police even get called. But Vicky Flynn was happy […]

Diversity in N.J. Legislature improves in 2022, but still doesn’t reflect the state

BY: - January 11, 2022

When Shama Haider — soon to be a freshman assemblywoman representing Bergen County — arrived at the Statehouse Annex on West State Street in Trenton for orientation, she was giddy with excitement. But Haider is not excited just because she’ll get to push for policies that matter to her, like environmental protection and transportation, or […]

Trailblazing scholar heads to the N.J. Assembly with eye on public access

BY: - January 3, 2022

Sadaf Jaffer is used to being first. She was the first South Asian woman to serve as a mayor in New Jersey, and the first Muslim woman to serve as a mayor in the United States. When she gets sworn in next week as one of the newest members of the New Jersey Assembly, she […]

Bill to abolish some juvenile offenders’ fines awaiting governor’s OK

BY: - December 29, 2021

A bill that would eliminate many fines and costs imposed on juvenile offenders now heads to Gov. Phil Murphy after passing in the Legislature. The measure would excuse youthful offenders from having to pay: certain testing and laboratory fees; a penalty for false public alarms; a monthly penalty imposed on juvenile sex offenders; and the cost of […]

Bill would increase penalties, require reporting on school bullying

BY: - December 27, 2021

A bipartisan bill to toughen New Jersey’s anti-bullying law has won final legislative approval and awaits Gov. Phil Murphy’s signature. The bill would require school superintendents to report bullying incidents to school boards and direct school districts to spell out in anti-bullying policies the consequences a student faces for harassing, intimidating, or bullying a classmate. It would also […]

New congressional district map largely a victory for Democrats

BY: - December 22, 2021

Democrats won a victory Wednesday when the New Jersey Redistricting Commission approved the party’s preferred new congressional map after the tiebreaker, former Supreme Court Justice John Wallace, backed the party’s map in what was otherwise a party-line vote. The new map will shore up competitive North Jersey districts held by Reps. Mikie Sherrill (D-11) and Josh […]

Dem leader slams ‘desperate’ Republicans for vaccine protest that delayed voting

BY: and - December 21, 2021

New Jersey Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin criticized his Republican colleagues for their “desperate efforts to delay important legislation” after a Monday voting session that lasted for about 11 hours. Several GOP lawmakers stretched the last voting day of 2021 into a marathon over their objections to a policy that requires them to show proof of […]

Bill expanding contraceptive access advances in N.J. Senate

BY: - December 6, 2021

A bill that would require health insurers to cover contraceptives for 12 months at a time — instead of the six months now mandated by state law — advanced in the New Jersey Senate Monday. Testifying before the Senate Commerce Committee, bill sponsor Sen. Shirley Turner (D-Mercer) said the change will help reduce abortions by […]