School days, gas taxes and an oil spill: First News Friday
Today in New Jersey’s First News:
It may be the start of a trend. Toms River regional is the biggest district so far to consider a later start time for students. The school superintendent says studies showing teens need more sleep makes the issue worth looking into. But it's not an easy task. With after school clubs, sports, and other activities, as well as busing schedules, parents shouldn't get their hopes up. Parents in districts across New Jersey have been asking for buses to come later, so their kids can get more sleep.
When a deal is reached on how to replenish the almost bankrupt transportation trust fund, Senate President Steve Sweeney says it must include doubling the amount of aid towns and counties get. Sweeney is mum on what the solution will be, but he concedes you'll be footing the bill.
- Sweeney wants more money for local roads, bridges / NJ1015.com
- Christie faces dilemma potential gas tax hike / Real Clear Politics
A two-mile long oil sheen, believed to be diesel fuel from a still-unknown source, threatens wildlife in Sandy Hook Bay.
- Coast Guard: Oil spill threatens Sandy Hook Bay / NJ1015.com
CIA director John Brennan is acknowledging that agency officers did "abhorrent" things to detainees but defending the post-9/11 interrogation program for stopping attacks and saving lives. Brennan held an unprecedented televised news conference at CIA headquarters Thursday, saying it's "unknown and unknowable" whether the brutal interrogation tactics yielded crucial intelligence. But the CIA chief maintains that detainees offered "useful and valuable" information after the treatment.
- CIA chief challenge Senate torture report / NJ1015.com
- John Brennan defends CIA after torture report / CNN
Last year, Gov. Christie signed a bill allowing undocumented immigrants to pay in-state college tuition rates, but he rejected a move to offer them state financial aid. Several lawmakers are hoping he's changed his mind because they're pushing a new bill to give illegal immigrants access to state aid programs.
A home contractor has been charged after he took 120-thousand dollars but never built the home he promised to a sandy victim in union beach. A sandy fraud task force nabbed the contractor who was doing business under the name Edward Wohanka.
Ridesharing companies like Uber started showing up in new jersey last year. They have done well, especially down the shore in the summer time. But state lawmakers are looking to pass sweeping new regulations that could put them out of business: like requiring permits, a special license endorsement and background checks for all drivers.
- Ridesharing bill adds restrictions for Uber, Lyft / NJ1015.com
- The riding safety issues that could bottle Uber / CBS Moneywatch
The family of 13-year old Oretha Nimley continues to mourn her death but her body has not been laid to rest. The girl was hit and killed on the Blackhorse Pike in Atlantic County a month ago. Her body was taken to a Philly funeral home but the family has yet to claim her, saying they can't afford a funeral. Efforts are underway to help.
- Lack of money keeps family from burying daughter / Press of Atlantic City
As we wrap up 2014 many Jersey business owners are expressing cautious optimism about the coming new year.
- NJ businesses cautiously optimistic about 2015 / NJ1015.com
If your local police department wants to arm officers with military m-14 rifles, all they have to do is ask the defense department for them. The state may change that with reforms to the way military surplus is acquired. Local government approval and sign off by the state attorney general would be required for any future purchases.
- Should local police be armed with military weapons / Asbury Park Press
Some south Jersey residents are suing the owner of a Pennsylvania landfill claiming the stink wafting across the river is so bad they can't go outside in their own yards. The Tullytown landfill is just over the Delaware from Florence and the suit claims the stench makes it impossible to live there or even sell their homes.
The number of black bears killed during this week's annual hunt is way off from past years. Only 189-bruins have been taken by hunters. That's down from 600 in 2010. Wildlife officials continue to insist the hunt is necessary to thin the black bear population as the number of bear/human encounters increase.
- 25 bears killed on 4th day of NJ bear hunt / Philly.com
New Jersey strengthens its fight against prescription drug abuse. This year alone, an additional 25-thousand healthcare professionals signed on to New Jersey's unique prescription monitoring program.
- More physicians sign up for prescription program / NJ1015.com
Do you carry a lot of debt? Do you think you'll ever get out of it? If you said yes, you're not alone according to a new credit cards-dot-com report.
- Carrying debt? One in five don't see a way out / NJ1015.com
The gambling market continues to shrink in Atlantic City, yet lawmakers are still trying to open new casinos. This time around, they are pushing smaller boutique casinos. The legislature is trying to make it more attractive for developers and at least one may be interested. The owner of the Chelsea Hotel says he plans to open a small gaming section.
- Hotel owner: I'll open a small Atlantic City casino / NJ1015.com
After 18-months in a federal prison, former Hamilton Mayor John Bencivengo is out and living in a halfway house in Philly. Bencivengo was caught taking bribes while in office.
A new report finds Jersey is not doing a great job of protecting our children from the dangers associated with tobacco products. In fact, we're the worst state in the nation when it comes to supporting efforts to stop kids from smoking.
In Trenton, the police director is looking to build better relation between his department and the community. Aside from more community patrols, Trenton officers are being required to stop in and talk to business owners. They’re also being asked to go to church on Sunday to help worshippers cross the street and get safely to their cars.
Following the message of protests across the country, New Jersey residents overwhelmingly say that a Staten Island grand jury was wrong not to indict a New York City cop for the chokehold death of Eric Garner.
- Eric Garner poll: The jury got it wrong / NJ1015.com
WEATHER from chief meteorologist Dan Zarrow:
TODAY... Breaks of sun. Flurries. Highs 37-41
TONIGHT... Partly cloudy. Lows 26-30
TOMORROW... Sun and clouds. A bit warmer. Highs 41-44
SUNDAY... Mostly sunny and pleasant. Highs 44-48
To view Dan’s extended 5-day forecast, click HERE.
Pick 3: 9-9-2
Straight pays $313. Box pays $104. Pair pays $31.
Pick 4: 1-1-4-5
Straight pays $2,024. Box pays $168.50.
Cash 5: 04-09-12-20-40
5 of 5 pays $92,641. 4 of 5 pays $397. 3 of 5 pays $12.
Pick 6: 03-05-17-26-41-46
There were no top prize winners in Thursday night's Pick 6 Lotto drawing, New Jersey Lottery officials said.
Five out of six paid $2,311 to 13 winners; four out of six paid $55 to 599 winners; three out of six paid $3 to 10,833 winners. Monday's top prize estimate is $8 million annuity.
Here are the winning numbers selected Thursday in the midday New Jersey State Lottery drawing:
Pick 3: 3-5-9
Straight pays $274. Box pays $45.50, Pair pays $27.
Pick 4: 4-6-2-4
Straight pays $3,145. Box pays $262.