Atlantic City’s Debt, The Opioid Crisis and Award-Winning South Jersey Vodka – Thursday’s Eclectic Roundup

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There’s a long look at Atlantic City’s finances on Bloomberg today that basically concludes that the future is likely to be a double whammy of tax hikes and spending cuts, which I guess everyone already knew is the way to dig yourself out of a debt hole, but there’s something about the graphics on the page – they depict the drop in tax take – that is so stark it’s hard not to feel sympathy pains for the taxpayers in the city. The blink-and-you’d-miss-it takeaway from the Bloomberg piece is that the city workers’ union is considering legal action to thwart any move by the city’s overseer to change workers’ contract. If anyone wants to be cheered up, they can take a look at our take on how the city’s crisis is actually a problem for the whole county, although that gets less attention.

In even more depressing local news (it’s one of those days, apparently), there was another shooting in Hamilton Township last night – Lynda Cohen at Breaking AC has the details here.

In wider New Jersey news, there have been some developments around tackling the opioid crisis that are worth paying attention to. A group of hospitals a long way north of Atlantic County, but connected to networks down here, have agreed to provide Union County police with free Narcan, the drug used to counteract opioid overdoses. New Jersey is also expanding welfare benefits for former drug offenders – although not for anyone with a conviction for distribution. Separately, an appeals court is rethinking the medical marijuana question.

New Jersey has so many water-related problems. There are hurricanes and storms. There’s flooding from the bays. And the drinking-water system is really really old. NJ Spotlight takes a long look at the changes the state needs to make to improve the system.

To lift everyone’s spirits (pun intended) – here’s a piece on a South Jersey distillery (Richland’s Lazy Eye Distillery) that just one an award for its vodka.

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The rest of today’s headlines include details on Atlantic City’s efforts to draw in gamers, the Hamilton Township shootings, affordable housing and pensions and a student protester in Vineland:

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