Federal forecasters say this spring is likely to be wetter and warmer in New Jersey. But it could be worse.

Jon Gottschalck, chief of the Operational Prediction Branch of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Climate Prediction Center, says a modest El Nino that emerged in early February is still impacting weather, here and elsewhere.

"Even though the El Nino is weak at the current time, it does support the potential that our forecast for above average precipitation," he said Thursday.

But he hastens to add that Jersey will not see the unprecedented flooding torturing the Midwest.

"You are currently under a minor threat or a minor risk with the official spring flood outlook. Much more of a serious concern across the northern central and southern part of the central part of the country . But that does not mean that you won't have any flooding occurring in your region as normally heavy rain events ... could produce flooding in local areas."

Gottschalck says April, May and June will be warmer this year.

Joe Cutter is the afternoon news anchor on New Jersey 101.5