January 17, 2014 |
John Hanson, the chief financial officer of the Delaware River Port Authority, was named Wednesday as interim chief executive of the DRPA to replace John Matheussen, who has been appointed a state Superior Court judge by Gov. Christie. Hanson also appears to have the inside track to get the job permanently, although DRPA board members said they would conduct a nationwide search. Hanson, 53, a certified public accountant from Cherry Hill, is a former DRPA board member and a former chairman of the Camden County Republican Party.
January 16, 2014 |
When it was time to give the benediction at Gov. Christie's State of the State address Tuesday, the Rev. Wayne Zschech could have been at his Haddonfield church. As soon as Christie concluded his highly anticipated, 46-minute speech to a packed Statehouse, the audience of lawmakers and dignitaries began chatting. Zschech, senior pastor at the Lutheran Church of Our Savior, said his congregation often responds in a similar manner after the closing hymn, packing up and preparing to leave.
January 16, 2014 |
State officials have been debating Philadelphia's second casino since the Carter administration. OK, since 2006. It just feels like forever. This month, the Gaming Control Board will hold three days of hearings for the five remaining bidders. The entertainment level will surely be diminished, since Steve Wynn bolted, again, after setting a record for dropping University of Pennsylvania references, the assumption being that attending college here guarantees a casino license. But here's a thought: What if the board considered the long game, and said no to a second city casino?
January 15, 2014 |
The number of Americans who selected plans through the Obamacare exchanges surged nearly fivefold in December, administration officials said Monday. In the most detailed accounting of what began as a public relations disaster in October, officials told reporters that nearly 2.2 million people had completed the sign-up process through Dec. 28. That doesn't necessarily mean they are covered. Since Jan. 1, thousands of people across the country trying to use their new insurance have been told by caregivers that they are not covered.
January 11, 2014 |
TRENTON - He was "betrayed," "humiliated," "saddened," and "blindsided. " "I come out here today to apologize to the people of New Jersey," Gov. Christie said Thursday, shortly before he announced the firing of one of his senior aides and the dismissal of a close political adviser after they were linked a day earlier to an apparent political vendetta. During a nearly two-hour Statehouse news conference packed with TV crews and reporters, Christie took question after question over a plot allegedly designed to punish the Democratic mayor of Fort Lee - who did not endorse the Republican governor's reelection in November - by causing massive traffic jams in September onto the George Washington Bridge.
January 10, 2014 |
THE GRASS ISN'T greener a mile-high up in Colorado, but now that it's legal there, a longtime local marijuana activist is hitting the road with a heavy heart and heading west. Diane Fornbacher, 36, of Collingswood, N.J., has been trying to change marijuana laws since she got busted for possession as a freshman at Penn State about 18 years ago. Today, Fornbacher's married with two sons and a station wagon in her driveway, active in her community, she said, all while serving on the national board of directors for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, campaigning for medical marijuana in New Jersey and beyond, and writing about all things marijuana on her online magazine, Ladybud . That fight has taken a toll, she said, including a visit from New Jersey's Department of Children and Families last year over what she said was her son's mention of hemp in school.
January 9, 2014 |
In a bright and airy factory in Northeast Philadelphia, technicians are needed to tackle a three-year backlog of helicopter orders at AgustaWestland. And in Marlton, a physicians' management company plans to add hundreds of health workers, doctors, and nurses this year. Meanwhile, researchers and salespeople once employed at Merck & Co.'s Montgomery County plant will spend January polishing their resumés. As of Sunday, 500 of them no longer have jobs. Hundreds of engineers and others at Lockheed Martin's Newtown facility, in the process of closing, also need work.
January 7, 2014 |
PHILLY-BASED "Mob Wives" star Alicia DiMichele will be sentenced in Brooklyn Federal Court today for embezzling funds from Big R Trucking, the company she once co-owned with hubs Edward "Tall Guy" Garofalo Jr ., who was recently sentenced to seven years in prison for conspiracy to commit murder and witness tampering. According to court docs, DiMichele faces a $96,000 fine, $20,000 in restitution payments and up to six months in prison. Although the $20,000 fine was agreed upon beforehand, DiMichele's attorney, John S. Wallenstein , called the restitution "both inappropriate and vastly excessive," writing that prosecutors came up with the figure because of DiMichele's participation on the VH1 reality show.
January 4, 2014 |
Alieta Eck, the Somerset County doctor who ran unsuccessfully for New Jersey's vacant U.S. Senate seat last summer, is running for Congress in 2014. Eck, who had not sought elected office before the Senate race, lost the August Republican primary to Steve Lonegan. Cory Booker, the former mayor of Newark, won the general election in October. "I'm building on the momentum I gained in the Senate race," Eck said this week. "The people of New Jersey are looking for something different.
January 3, 2014 |
I can see the future. But I will never use my powers for evil. Let other columnists recklessly ruminate about what might happen during the next 12 months; my observations benefit from 20/20 hindsight. So I can confidently predict that the biggest New Jersey story in 2014 will be . . . Chris Christie. Not simply for being his ever-semi-lovable self, but for single-handedly saving the "NY/NJ" Super Bowl. On Feb. 2, as the "Superblizzard of the Century" bears down on MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ/NY, President Obama offers the governor a chance to join him for an emergency photo op aboard Marine One. Christie blows off the president and, having thus genuflected to his party's fright wing, decrees that the bowl game be moved to the nearby Meadowlands mega-mall formerly known as Xanadu.