New Jersey's First News, hosted by Eric Scott, written and produced by Matthew White and Patrick Lavery. Full podcast available below. Digital support, with additional links, by Dan Alexander.

Partly sunny. Chance of showers.  High: 80-85
Cloudy. Chance of showers. Low: 66-74
TOMORROW: Rain, heavy at times. High: 75-80


Cease Fire Broken - Just hours after a three day cease-fire was supposed to go into effect, Israeli tank fire has killed several Palestinians. An Israeli spokesman says they are looking into it

Watermelon Mess - What a mess on Route 1 last night. In North Brunswick, a truck flipped over, dumping hundreds of watermelons. No one was hurt, and they aren't sure how it happened. You might still see some rinds on the side of the road today, but traffic is moving.

Quiet July - Temperatures were cooler last month than in recent summers and we had several severe, drenching thunderstorms.  But, statistically speaking, July was a ho-hum weather month.

Stormy Weather - Tropical Storm Bertha is spinning in the Atlantic Ocean, the second named storm of the season. But, Bertha is not very big nor very strong.  Trackers don't expect much change in the next few days. The storm is expected to pass Barbados this afternoon.

Projected track of Tropical Storm Bertha (NHC)

Gasday - What is the best day of the week to buy gas, price-wise? The answer may surprise you.

Mom in trouble - A Central Jersey mom is charged with selling heroin out of her home with her one year old son by her side.  Danielle Zitowsky, 23, faces drug charges, as well as endangerment. The boy is with relatives, while the mom is in jail.

Trying to Explain  - Ray Rice says he has never been involved in any domestic violence incidents before he knocked his then-fiance unconscious at the Revel in Atlantic City. Domestic violence support groups are furious he only got a two-game suspension from the NFL. The former Rutgers star and Baltimore Ravens running back says there is more to the story, but did not go into detail when he spoke to the media Thursday.

Governor Chris Christie talks with Iquan Small while Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno looks on after a special joint legislative session to urge action on bail reform in the Assembly Chambers at the Statehouse (Governor's Office/Tim Larsen)

Making the Case for Bail Reform - Political posturing and statement-making at the state house Thursday over an issue that on the surface seems like a no-brainer: reforming New Jersey's bail system.  But, there is a much deeper meaning here, and it's an issue that has far-reaching political ramifications to both Democrats and a governor considering a presidential run. Gov. Chris Christie ordered the legislature into session; they came and heard the governor's speech, then abruptly left the building.

Back in the Granite State - Against attacks from Democrats, Gov. Chris Christie is defending his economic record as he visits New Hampshire for the second time in a month. Christie told a crowd he inherited a horrible state economy and is trying to fix problems worse than New Hampshire's. New Hampshire holds the first presidential primary, and Christie continues to consider a run.

Conversion Ban Upheld - A federal judge has dismissed another lawsuit challenging New Jersey's ban on gay conversion therapy. A New Jersey couple said their constitutional rights were being violated because the law prevents them from seeking treatment for their 15-year old son's “gayness.” Gov. Chris Christie signed the ban into law, saying potential health risks outweighed parental choice.

Crowd on Atlantic City beach for Blake Shelton concert (DO AC via Instagram)

Do AC  - More than 60,000 packed the beaches in Atlantic City for last night's free Blake Shelton concert. That eclipses the 50,000 who turned out for Jimmy Buffet last year. On Sunday, Lady Antebellum will play another free concert.


Honoring a Hero - Route 17 in Waldwick would be known as the Christopher Goodell Memorial Highway. Three state legislators have introduced a bill to rename the highway after the former United States Marine and Waldwick police officer, who was killed when his police cruiser was hit from behind by a truck.



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