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Archive for October 15th, 2008

TRENTON – Republican lawmakers proposed a 50 percent reduction in the state sales tax this holiday season, saying it would help consumers and retailers in a worsening economy.

The plan is backed by business advocates, including the National Federation of Independent Business/New Jersey. Federation state director Laurie Ehlbeck said, “The upcoming holiday shopping season will be a make or break one for thousands of small retail shops that traditionally depend on holiday sales to stay in business. Given how shaky the economy has been over the past few months, it makes this holiday season even more critical.”

The Republican plan would cut New Jersey’s seven percent sales tax to 3.5 percent from Thanksgiving through Jan. 4. It would also cut the sales tax in Urban Enterprise Zones, which already charge a discounted 3.5 percent, to 1.75 percent.

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UTICA, N.Y.—The mood of Americans has fallen sharply this month as the economy becomes an even greater concern among likely voters deciding for whom to vote in the November presidential election – even as President George W. Bush’s job approval ratings hit a new record low of 21%, a new Reuters/Zogby telephone poll shows.

The Reuters/Zogby Index, which measures overall American confidence, has dropped to 89.7 from 96.3 in September, but remains above the all-time low of 87.7 that the Index hit in March. The Reuters/Zogby Index includes 10 poll questions that gauge perception of the state of the country and the economy. The telephone survey of 1,207 likely voters nationwide was conducted Oct. 9-12, as the U.S. stock market plunged late last week, but was completed before Monday’s stock rally. It carries a margin of error of +/- 2.9 percentage points.

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EDISON—On Friday, Oct. 3, The Wardlaw-Hartridge School hosted a forum on the upcoming presidential election. Edison Mayor Jun H. Choi, a Democrat, and Assemblyman Jon Bramnick (R-Union County) addressed the Upper School students and parents.

 

Assemblyman Jon M. Bramnick with Andrew Webster, Head of School at The Wardlaw-Hartridge School, and Edison Mayor Jun H. Choi. Photo by Michelle H. LePoidevin.

Assemblyman Jon M. Bramnick with Andrew Webster, Head of School at The Wardlaw-Hartridge School, and Edison Mayor Jun H. Choi. Photo by Michelle H. LePoidevin.

Choi focused on the campaign of Senator Barack Obama and the Democratic party, while Bramnick focused on the campaign of Senator John McCain and the Republican party. Both politicians also addressed the role of local politics in national issues. The forum was moderated by Andrew Webster, head of school.

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ELIZABETH—Michael LaMorte of Elizabeth will be running the ING New York City Marathon on Nov. 2 for his one-year-old daughter, Olivia Grace.

 “My daughter is the bravest baby I know,” LaMorte said.  “At the ripe age of three months, she developed a deep tissue hemangioma (tumor) above her right eye.  In about six weeks, this aggressive non-malignant tumor became the size of a tangerine.  It was forcing her eye closed with limited visibility.  We had it removed at St. Lukes Hospital in NYC.”

Olivia is now doing fine with no reported visual problems.  The scar under her eyebrow is barely visible, LaMorte said.

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RAHWAY—On Friday, Oct. 24, the YMCA of Eastern Union County, Rahway Branch will be having “Halloween at the Y.”  From 7-9 p.m., wear your costume and participate in games, activities, dancing, pumpkin decorating, arts and crafts and healthy snacks.

Attendees should also bring a family photograph to make a Halloween family pictures to take home! The Halloween event is open to members of the YMCA; just show your ID card. Non-members must accompany a member of the YMCA and pay a nominal guest fee. Everyone must RSVP in advance.

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