South Jersey’s Opioid Problem
The number of prescriptions for opioid painkillers written in some South Jersey counties increased between 2015 and 2010, bucking the national trend of a decline in opioid prescription rates, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found.
Cumberland and Cape May counties saw an increase in opioid prescription rates over that period, while the prescription rate in Atlantic, Camden, Salem, Gloucester and Burlington counties remained stable, but much higher than the prescription rate in North Jersey, the CDC found. (Separate but related: NJ Spotlight has this piece looking at whether emergency rooms are the weak link in the state’s prescription monitoring program.)
The CDC report, part of a nation-wide review of opioid prescription rates published last week, showed that South Jersey has some of the highest opioid prescription rates in the nation. Read more via Route 40.
Atlantic County Tax Issues
Disagreement over how to create a county-wide tax assessment system that would lower the overall number of appeals in Atlantic County means the issue will likely stretch into next year, reports John DeRosier for the Press of Atlantic City. “County and state officials both agree a countywide system is needed to reduce the overall number of appeals. But no one can agree on how it should be done,” DeRosier writes.
In the rest of the day’s news, cancer diagnoses are declining in South Jersey, many South Jersey kids have a lower quality of life than their peers in the north of the state, a former Atlantic City Teacher of the Year and Christie’s pick for Board of Education was quietly dropped after it emerged she was banned from working in schools, Guadagno wants to sell Christie’s Island Beach State Park beach house, Cumberland County College has a new beverage tourism program, and it’s going to get hotter and more humid this week.
All that and more below:
South Jersey Log Cabin For Sale: Nearly 400 years old, Asking $2.9M, Includes Present Owners–When Harry and Doris Rink were married in 1973 in front of the ballast stone fireplace inside the tiny historic cabin known as the Nothnagle Log House, they also swore a lifelong dedication to preserving the now-379-year-old structure in Gibbstown, Gloucester County. Over the years, the pair have become so much a part of the home’s history — giving impromptu tours to whoever knocks on the door or spending summers digging clay from a nearby stream to use as chinking between the ancient logs just as the cabin’s 17th-century Finnish builders had done — that it seems perfectly fitting when the Rinks say they never want to leave the place. Philly.com
As Six Parishes Become Three, Catholics in Camden Prepare for Changes–A morning Mass at St. Joseph’s Church in Camden last week offered only a single and fleeting allusion to the profound changes facing the city’s Catholic community. “Whatever will happen to our parish and our church,” the Rev. Krzysztof Wtorek told the five stalwarts — all but one of them senior citizens — in the pews, “our mission is to go to those who are away from God.” Philly.com
Is Hospital ER Weak Link in State’s Prescription Monitoring Program?–Gov. Chris Christie has made real strides in recent years to strengthen and expand New Jersey’s Prescription Monitoring Program, a database designed to help doctors identify patients seeking inappropriate levels of addictive drugs and reduce the spread of the opioid epidemic. Now there is interest in a bipartisan proposal to plug what supporters say is a “dangerous loophole” in the program by requiring emergency room providers to also check the system before dispensing certain drugs. www.njspotlight.com
Getting a Read on $125 Million Library Bond Ballot Question–A proposed ballot question seeking voter authorization for the state to borrow $125 million to help fund capital projects at local libraries won overwhelming bipartisan support as it advanced through the Legislature. But the fate of the library-bond issue now lies squarely in the hands of just one person — Gov. Chris Christie. www.njspotlight.com
NJ Seeks to Ban Pesticide Given Clean Bill of Health by EPA–The Legislature is pressing ahead with a measure to ban a pesticide linked to potential harmful health effects in humans, but which the federal government backed off prohibiting its use earlier this year. The decision by new Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt to reject a ban on the use of chlorpyrifos this spring, reversed a recommendation of the agency’s scientists had made during the Obama administration. www.njspotlight.com
Man Caught Testing the Waters — From the Shower — at Taj Liquidation Sale–At least one buyer made sure he was all cleaned up before making a purchase at the Taj Mahal liquidation sale this week. A man identified by NJTV News as Dave Cipollini of Brigantine was found showering in one of the rooms, and the news station caught it on video. BreakingAC
Two Arrested After Drugs Seized in Pleasantville Car Stop–Two men were arrested Saturday after a K-9 dog sniffed out drugs during a motor-vehicle stop. Officers Girard Tell and Ryan VanSyckle stopped the car around 610 Noah’s Road, and asked for K-9 Sgt. David Aristizabal to come with his partner, Dozer, Capt. Matt Hartman said. BreakingAC
Pennsylvania Man Arrested in Ventnor Stabbing–A Pennsyvania wanted in a stabbing in Ventnor that left a woman critically injured was arrested by Philadelphia police during a car stop Saturday. David Legette, 53, is accused of attacking his 49-year-old girlfriend inside a car in the area of Newport and Atlantic avenues in Ventnor.https://rtforty.com/wp-admin/users.php BreakingAC
Heat and Humidity On the Rise Again this Week–Another Jersey summertime heat wave is in the forecast - Monday will be the nicest day of the week, while Thursday will be the most oppressive. New Jersey 101.5 – Proud to be New Jersey – New Jersey News Radio
Ventnor Police Get First Save Just Hours After Starting to Carry Naloxone–Just hours after Ventnor police began carrying an overdose antidote, they had their first save Friday. “The ink was still drying on my order and we had our first drug overdose and she’s alive,” Chief Doug Biagi said. “It’s awesome.” BreakingAC
Cumberland County College to Offer New Beverage Tourism Program–With the rapid growth of small-scale craft beverage companies in New Jersey and throughout the Mid-Atlantic region, comes the industry’s increasing need for a trained workforce. To meet this need, Cumberland County College will offer a new Beverage Tourism/Tasting Room Management career certificate program beginning in the fall 2017 semester. www.snjtoday.com
Margate Woman Arrested for Allegedly Stabbing Man in the Chest–A Margate woman was arrested Friday, July 7 for allegedly stabbing a man in the chest at a residence at Casablanca Condominiums on the 9500-block of Ventnor Avenue. Shore News Today
Bye-Bye Beach House? Guadagno Wants to Sell Christie’s Island Beach Retreat–A Democratic state lawmaker is proposing legislation to lease the house to the public while Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, a gubernatorial candidate, wants it to be sold. NJ.com
Christie State Board of Ed Pick was Banned From Working in Public Schools–One of Gov. Chris Christie's recent picks for the state Board of Education was quietly rescinded after officials learned she was previously convicted of child abuse and banned from working in public schools, NJ Advance Media has learned. Christie earlier this year nominated Nina Washington, a former Atlantic City Teacher of the Year, to serve on the state's 13-member Board of Education, a body Christie has swiftly and controversially overhauled during his final year in office. NJ.com
Report: South Jersey Kids Face Widespread Economic, Health Challenges–South Jersey is a rough place to grow up. That’s the message, once again, from the annual Kids Count analysis of children’s well-being conducted by Advocates for Children of New Jersey. Courier-Post
Man Fatally Stabbed in South Jersey Home Invasion–Authorities in Moorestown are investigating after a man was fatally stabbed during a Sunday morning home invasion. Police were called to a residence in the 700 block of Hartford Road around 12:23 am after receiving a report of a home invasion. PhillyVoice
Troopers Investigating After 3 Injured in AC Expressway Crash–roopers are investigating the cause of a single-car crash that injured three people on the Atlantic City Expressway, New Jersey State Police said Sunday. Trooper Alejandro Goez said the crash, which was reported at 4:45 pm, occurred when an eastbound Nissan Murano carrying seven people overturned near mile marker 21.1. NJ.com
Cancer Diagnoses are Steadily Declining Among NJ Residents, Report Shows–A new report shows invasive cancer diagnoses in New Jersey are on the decline, which may be significant for a state with some of the highest cancer rates in the nation. The Cancer Incidence and Mortality in New Jersey report, released by the state Department of Health last month, showed cases of invasive cancers among residents in 2014 were slightly down from 2013. Press of Atlantic City