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Archive for October 3rd, 2008

By Assemblyman Joseph Vas

Over the past month, economic woes have become the central issue of concern, both locally globally, and of course nationally. With the interconnectivity of today’s global marketplace, this concern is more than justified.  What we do or fail to do, in the case of the rejected federal economic bailout package by Congress, has significant implications on the world economic stage.

Here in New Jersey, we fully understand that we cannot successfully operate as a financial entity unto ourselves.  We also understand that the national economic situation is likely to get worse before it gets better, a prospect that could have a dire impact on the lives of hundreds of thousands of Garden State working families.

While New Jersey legislators know that we cannot hope to solve the nation’s economic problems alone, we have been more than just passive observers of the burgeoning economic recession.  Over the past nine months, the legislation has taken action, advancing numerous measures that will help protect our state’s economic engine and shore up New Jersey businesses as the national economic climate continues to sour.

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By Assemblyman John Wisniewski

We were all truly saddened to learn that yet another person had chosen to jump off the Victory Bridge and end their life.  It is nearly impossible to imagine the pain and sorrow felt by a family when a loved one decides to take their own life, and my heart goes out to the families of all these individuals.  Equally, it is difficult to grasp the turmoil someone must be going through to make such a tragic and irreversible decision. 

This most recent suicide follows close behind two others and an additional attempt all made earlier this summer.  And while suicide rates in the state of New Jersey are among some of the lowest in the nation- so many instances, so close together and so very close to home might be telling us a different story. 

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Senate voted 74-24 to approve legislation boosting funding to improve and expand intercity passenger rail in New Jersey and across the nation last week.

The bills, authored by Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), will increase funding for Amtrak over the next five years, require new safety controls on trains that help reduce crashes and allow states to regulate solid waste processing facilities along rail lines.

“As Amtrak ridership continues to hit record levels, our bill gives passenger rail the resources it needs to meet increased demands,” said Sen. Lautenberg, chairman of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Subcommittee on Surface Transportation. “Our bill also modernizes safety laws and decreases risk with smarter regulation and new technology.  Now that both the House and Senate have passed this package, it is time for the president to sign it into law and give Americans the rail service they deserve.”

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CLARK—The Clark Fire Department will be hosting an open house on Saturday, Oct. 4, from noon to 5 p.m. at its fire headquarters located at 250 Broadway.

Fire Chief Robert Venturella enthusiastically said, “This event builds upon our 2005 Open House experience. A number of new opportunities have been built into the schedule including a hands-on fire extinguisher demonstration.  One typically doesn’t operate a fire extinguisher, so it is a good occasion to become acquainted with an extinguisher’s operation before an actual emergency.”

“The Open House will be truly unique and enjoyable for family members of all ages and it is designed to be educational and entertaining,” Venturella continued. “Each of the members of the volunteer fire department are contributing a significant amount of effort to ensure success of the open house.  There will be so many activities at the event that a family can be actively engaged for an entire afternoon.” 

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by Michael S. Goldberger, film critic

Though challengingly long at two hours and forty minutes, a bit more convoluted than is digestible and a mite derivative at junctures, Spike Lee’s “Miracle at St. Anna” is rarely boring. It is, in the very least, a tension-filled WWII movie, Italian campaign, circa 1944. At most, it is a treatise on prejudice.

Unfortunately, while near epic in size, the film never completely moves of its own momentum, as was so sublimely evidenced in the director’s underrated magnum opus, “Malcolm X” (1992). Oddly and ironic considering what some of Mr. Lee’s detractors have opined over the years, this possesses more blunt force than sharp edge.

Matters start with a bang, literally, when, in 1983, a fellow steps up to postal worker Hector Negron’s window and asks for a twenty-cent stamp. Unblinkingly, Mr. Negron pulls out a Luger and shoots the customer point blank in the forehead. Next stop for Negron and The Daily News reporter who smells a story, Bellevue.  

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