TRENTON – Senate President Nick Scutari is serving as New Jersey’s acting governor on Saturday.

Gov. Phil Murphy and Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver are each out of state for personal travel this weekend, though Oliver returns Saturday evening and will retake the reins of the executive branch.

Until then, Scutari gets the opportunity to serve as acting governor for the first time since becoming Senate president in January. The position is third in the line of succession in New Jersey.

Scutari, D-Union, is making the most of his day in the spotlight:

Attending a dedication ceremony this morning in his hometown of Linden, where a street is being named for the late Sen. Joe Suliga

Joining Sen. Vin Gopal and business leaders at Robinson Ale House in Asbury Park in mid-afternoon for an event on a bill passed by the Legislature allowing people to drink alcohol in pedicabs

Signing an executive order at Allaire State Park in Wall declaring today National Trails Day in the state

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The state constitution requires a temporary transfer of power when the governor leaves New Jersey. That interpretation has been loosened over the years to exclude short trips in the vicinity, such as to New York or Pennsylvania and as far as Washington, D.C.

Michael Symons is the Statehouse bureau chief for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at michael.symons@townsquaremedia.com

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2022 primary for U.S. House elections in New Jersey

The filing deadline for candidates to run in the June 7, 2022 primary was Monday, April 4.

Sixty-three candidates met the filing deadline, including 41 Republicans and 22 Democrats, but some petitions were ultimately disqualified because they didn't have the required 200 signatures from eligible voters in their political party who reside in the district.

In total, there are 56 candidates: 36 Republicans and 20 Democrats. A few have recently suspended their campaigns but will remain on the ballot.

Changes in NJ county populations since 2020

Census Bureau estimates of the change in county populations since the 2020 Census on April 1, 2020 also provide a glimpse into COVID-era trends, as that's roughly the same time the pandemic began. The list below sorts New Jersey's 21 counties by their total change between the Census and the July 1, 2021 estimate.