There will be no spotlight on Atlantic City from New Year’s Rockin’ Eve this year, The Press of Atlantic City reports. Everyone’s favorite government authority, the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority, had hoped to sponsor a broadcast from Boardwalk Hall using money left over from two cancelled beach concerts this summer. But apparently “scheduling conflicts and other considerations” got in the way. For anyone wondering whether or not this is a big deal, apparently New Year’s Rockin’ Eve had 22 million viewers, or 58 pct of the 18-49-year-old segment, last year. Which is a whole lot more than tuned in to the Miss America Pageant (another Dick Clark Production).
In more not-so-great-news for Atlantic City, The Pressreports that some state lawmakers are hoping to bring video lottery terminals to the Meadowlands, after the bid to open a casino there failed.
Meanwhile, you need to read this great investigation by the Asbury Park Press that looks at how cash-strapped municipalities (you probably live in one) are trying to make up for lost revenue by fining for everything and anything and then sending anyone who can’t or doesn’t pay to court. Take a look at what this means for some of the towns and also some of the judges – one in Ocean County was so busy last year he took home a paycheck worth $281,000.
At Route 40, we took a dive into the Pine Barrens over the holiday weekend and wrote about the closure of one-time piney fixture, Buzby’s General Store. We also published this interview with Emma, part of our series of mini-profiles of the people in our communities.
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The rest of our pick of today’s headlines – including news on Comcast jobs, a missing teen, and the horrific Hamilton Mall shooting – are below:
How Comcast Consolidation Means More Jobs For South Jersey–After cutting the ribbon earlier this month on its new Center of Excellence facility along White Horse Road, both Comcast and the New Jersey Chamber of Commerce say it's a win for the region. The 42,000-square-foot facility formerly home to the Cigna insurance company was completely renovated by the media giant -- after a consolidation of operations in Pennsylvania -- to now house more than 650 employees. NJ.com
South Jersey Teen Has Been Missing For Nearly A Week–Authorities are asking the public to help them find a 15-year-old Collingswood girl who went missing Tuesday. NJ.com
Community, Transparency Core Values As Police Body Cam Programs Expand–As Cherry Hill becomes the latest Camden County police department to add officer-worn body cameras, fewer questions are asked about the need for them than about the policies around their implementation. NJ PEN
Agritourism Grows In Cape May County–With birding, whale watching, and other back-to-nature activities so abundant around the southern peninsula of the Jersey Shore, ecotourism has long been a staple of the vacation-based economy, generating as much as $600 million a year in Cape May County. But lately, as more open-to-the-public farms, wineries, breweries, and even a distillery have arrived on the scene and the concept of farm-to-table has become as de rigueur on a menu as wild-caught-seafood and heirloom tomatoes, a new category of travel - agritourism - has sprouted in the region. Philly.com
County Library Systems Face Taxing Dilemmas–Stone Harbor’s new $4.2 million library is the latest recognition by Cape May county officials that beachfront towns can’t be neglected just because fewer residents are there in the winter. Meanwhile, in Atlantic County, beach town Longport earlier this month vote to leave the Atlantic County library system. Press of Atlantic City
Hundreds Mourn Hamilton Mall Shooting Victim–Hundreds packed the All Wars Memorial Building on Sunday afternoon to pay their respects to 21-year-old Demond Cottman, who was gunned down outside the Hamilton Mall early Friday. Meanwhile, there was no update as of Sunday afternoon on any suspects in the shooting. Press of Atlantic City