January 10, 2018

State of the State We’re In – Wednesday’s Roundup!

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Photo by Tim McGlynn

Slow News Day
The governor gave his State of the State speech yesterday afternoon at 3:00pm, and at 4:00pm, County Prosecutor Damon Tyner announced charges against James Kauffman over the 2012 murder of his wife, the radio host, April Kauffman.

Lynda Cohen reports the murder stemmed, allegedly, from “a long-term alliance between the former doctor and the Pagan motorcycle gang” members of which gang were contracted to carry out the killing. Tyner said the Pagans were running a “drug enterprise” in partnership with the doctor, selling everyone’s favorite pharmaceutical: synthetic opiates. The guy who actually pulled the trigger, allegedly, has since OD’d.

In Trenton, the governor did not devote all of his State of the State to opioids, but he did point out that he’d “devoted all of last year’s State of the State address to the disease that is killing more of us every year.” You can now maybe add April Kauffman to the list of wide-ranging victims around those substances.

Kauffman’s lawyers say he’s not guilty.

In related news, the Sackler family still has its name on a wing at the Met and however many medical schools around the world.

They Did It!
Chris Christie said the other day New Jerseyans will miss him when he’s gone and yesterday, as if by magic, Eagleton released its final polling which found fully 5% of New Jersey residents agreed with the governor. The pollsters called Christie, “the most unpopular NJ governor on record.”

“We did it, George,” Christie said to George Norcross at yesterday’s speech. He was talking about revitalizing Camden, Matt Friedman reports, “but it could have been so many other things.”

Anyway. They sure did do it.

Firefighter Pay
At press time, Judge Mendez was hearing arguments over whether it was cool for the state to cut firefighter pay by 11% in Atlantic City, with members of the ACFD “packed” into the courtroom. “They spent last week evacuating 16 floors of elderly and disabled during a three alarm fire the night of the blizzard,” Amy Rosenberg observes.

Not coincidentally the governor spent portions of yesterday’s speech discussing his achievements in controlling iniquitous firefighter pay (“they are objectively NOT overpaid”) and arguing cuts to police personnel laid the groundwork for the “rebirth” of Atlantic City that his buddy Bruce Springsteen has been singing about since 1982.

Cutting police and fire can have some negative consequences, i.e. “Attorney for @AtlanticCityFD says the department ‘did not have adequate staffing to respond to the fire’ at Jeffries tower the night [of] the blizzard. 27 called in, plus mutual aid,” Rosenberg reports.

It’s terribly unfair for them to schedule a natural disaster for the week of the hearing. Unfair and, unfortunately, very typical of Mother Nature.


For more news from around South Jersey, see below:

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