May 24, 2018: NJTV News with Mary Alice Williams
For NJTV, news is provided, in part by the members, of the New Jersey Education Association. Making. Public, schools great, for every child and, PSEG. We. Make things work for communities. Tonight. On NJTV news getting, ready for the unofficial start of summer on the Jersey Shore the. Shore forecast, beaches. In good shape water quality, clean rip. Currents, that could be a problem. Different. Organizations are here in Trenton to fight for tax fairness now, how you do that is, a different, story the. 300, million dollar fixer-upper. We've got your first look at the state house renovations. Plus. The federal government, tells New Jersey, not so fast on that salt workaround. And a sign of how the state is trying to raise awareness and tourism, at the same time those, stories are more next on NJTV. News. Live. From the Agnes Varis NJTV. Studio, at - Gateway, Center in Newark, this is NJTV. News with, Mary Alice Williams. Hello. And thanks for joining us at Michael Hill Mary Alice Williams is off to dead this weekend, marks the unofficial start. Of summer with, beaches, opening and folks heading to the Jersey Shore ashore, that's been preparing, for tourism and turbulence. As the, Atlantic hurricane season is just about to begin, senior, correspondent Brenda, Flanagan reports, it's. Really really nice today it's fantastic. Out Dimitri Kara's spent the morning soaking, up raised in Asbury, Park one of 216. New Jersey beaches open for business, heading into the Memorial, Day weekend, how you been in the water Oh knee, deep knee. Deep the water is probably like 58. 59, degrees definitely. Over all the bad weather you know in the long winter that would like never end. So. You're, ready yeah no for sure definitely, I think we all are the shore looks great New Jersey's beaches, all 530, miles of them are in really good shape officials. At the 16th, annual State of the Shore news conference, said multiple, Beach replenishments. Have built up dunes against, coastal, storms, the DEP reports. For Army, Corps projects, remain active, including. The troubled of seekin Island drainage, project, that backed pooled into the so called Lake Christie, in Margate, last summer, they're going excellently, and the Corps was actually very. Accommodating, in, making. Sure that it's schedule wasn't going to interfere with those towns that expressed a concern that's, important. Given, that today's national, hurricane season, forecast calls for a 75, percent chance of a near or above normal, hurricane. Season, that, means 10 to 16 named storms, of which 5 to 9 could be hurricanes and 1, to 4 of those major, category, 3 are above, superstorm. Sandy, was a category, one last, year was supposed to be slightly above average as well obviously, we had Harvey and Maria and Irma so it turned out to be pretty bad our beaches are actually in really good condition now, so should.
A Storm like sandy occur, we're, much better shape to sort of withstanding in fact, the so-called March, for Easter's did, erode Jersey, beaches shifting, tons of sand to offshore sandbars. And that, creates a particular hazard, while, those sandbars are out there rip, currents are associated, with sandbars, so. We definitely want to urge people to be careful particularly. If they go swimming early, in the season before lifeguards, come out last summer sadly, we. Had a lot of drownings, in New Jersey eight, of them were attributed, to rip currents and most. All of them were attributed, to swimming, at unguarded, beaches and, after hours New Jersey's, DEP, runs surveillance. Flights six, days a week looking for pollution it started, testing, water quality, a couple weeks ago at almost a hundred and ninety Ocean, beaches +31. Others along bays and rivers this past week everything passed everything's, good to go for next, weekend the Murphy administration's. Mindful, that the Jersey Shore generates. About half, of the state's forty, four billion dollars, in tourism, revenue so, it's fighting hard against, federal proposals, to drill offshore for, oil and gas you, might call the political, shore. Forecast, a little turbulent. In, Asbury, Park I'm Brenda Flanagan, NJTV. News a, heated. Debate is underway over, collecting. Higher taxes, on millionaires. In New Jersey and the impact, of all of it lay, a Michigan today collected, some opinions, on, on. The campaign trail governor Murphy promised, to raise state income taxes, on millionaires, and, that hasn't changed, since he's been in office what. Has changed is New Jersey Senate President, Steve Sweeney is, opinion, on taxing. The rich as, he, explains in a recent episode of on, the record all taxes. Are the last resort for one reason Michael we, didn't have the, craziness, that happened, where Washington, did that tax. Cut that became a huge, tax increase to us and the, people you're talking about can't, write off their taxes and I'll, dispute, you know and what the administration, says they've made money I can, show you how they've lost money but the director, of federal tax policy, at the nonpartisan, Institute. On taxation and. Economic policy. Is now, calling the Senate President now for, not looking at their data in the, correct way and. Looking. At certain parts of it to, say that actually the just, 1% do not get a tax cut they, never. Take a tax increase and. I. Believe, what he's leaving out is the peace that comes from the corporate tax cut we. Show. That the. The benefits of the corporate tax cut richest 1% of New Jersey households, that, gives them an average tax tax, benefit, of about, $28,000. And it's, important not to leave that out he wrote a brief clarifying. That their data shows that the highest income residents can, afford to pay more especially. As a result of the new federal tax, laws, senator, sweeties office has not yet commented on, IEPs. Briefed. At. A rally today in Trenton, the author of a new report by New Jersey policy. Perspective, said the numbers show the top 1% would. Still get a net tax break of roughly. $2,500. After. Federal tax cuts and governor, Murphy's tax plan New. Jersey is among the highest tax states in the country and, there has been debate over whether raising, taxes on the wealthy would.
Force Them out the, Senate President is among those who say it, has the, percentage, of Dowers collected, from the wealthy is going down the, cost they're leaving Steve wom HOF argues there's no evidence, to support that claim and, he says it's not something to worry about since most rich families, just got a tax cut I would respectfully, disagree with that opinion, research here at njbia, shows. The impact a millionaire's tax would have particularly, on our small businesses, in New, Jersey today we have 5,000. Small businesses, that would be impacted, by millionaire's tax they. Equal, over a billion dollars in adjusted, gross income to New Jersey's budget on top of that we have 20,000. Individuals, whose. Adjusted. Gross income to the state of New Jersey is over fifty four billion dollars, I would suggest that's money we don't want to mess around with back, in March Sweeney did propose a corporate, business tax instead, of a millionaire's, tax but, he hasn't pushed plans on the matter further we, asked his office whether that idea is still on the table and they said it was but. Reiterated all taxes, are a last, resort, corporations. Just like wealthy. Individuals, receive. A windfall. The. New federal tax law it, makes perfect sense personally, trying to, take. Some of that back to. Meet their our revenue means but. I don't. Think that it's an either/or proposition. I. Think. What. Several the people we interviewed, including. Sweeney did agree, on is bottom, line there's, a structural, deficit, issue in the state that needs to be fixed for, example we're not fully funding our school formula, we're not giving municipal, aid we're not doing, lead prevention, where we need and. So we. Need additional revenue how, that happens, is still up for debate but there isn't a lot of time left because if governor, Murphy doesn't. Sign the budget by the end of next month there. Will be a, government shutdown in. Trenton, Lea Michigan NJTV. News. The. IRS has spoken on New Jersey's, salt workaround, standing, by a strategic, development groups to do the NJ CU School of Business is Rhonda's schaeffler mother, the battle begins. Absolutely. Michael for government leaders in New Jersey a new, statement from the IRS on taxes, is like pouring salt into a wound and state, leaders are indeed. Gearing, up to do battle, governor, Murphy's vowing, to fight an, IRS, warning, about state, efforts, to circumvent the, new law that limits state and local property deductions. The IRS says it will issue new, regulations on, so-called work arounds that states have been doing since this new law took effect, earlier.
This Month governor, Murphy signed into, law a bill that, would provide tax, credits for. Charitable, contributions to, local governments, as a way. To circumvent the ten thousand dollar cap, on those, salt deductions, the, governor says he believes, this workaround, should, be allowed saying. Anything, less is a flat-out admittance. That the Trump administration is, guided. By politics. Rather than policy, the, limit on salt deductions, impacts, high tax states like New Jersey New York and California all. Of which are so-called blue states New, Jersey's Attorney General, contends the IRS, as decision, runs counter to the federal tax code adding. That should the IRS, and Treasury Department. Continue down this path New. Jersey will have no choice but, to challenge, the new rule in court, a decade. After the worst economic recession, since, the Great Depression. President. Trump today signed legislation rolling. Back financial, regulations, put, into place to try to prevent the next financial, crisis, the president signed, legislation that, rolls back some provisions, in the dodd-frank act such, as easing costly, regulations. For regional, community, banks, smaller, banks, had long argued, they were unfairly, targeted. Following the financial crisis, that involved, big Wall Street banks. Rising. Interest rates aren't just forcing consumers to, pay more for loans they're also hurting, the state pension, fund for, government workers the state Investment Council says the fund earned just over seven percent so far this fiscal year. That is below the target rate of return of seven point 65, percent, the, council's chairman Tom Burns has higher interest rates have created, some difficulties, including losses. In fixed income markets, on Wall, Street today stocks, ended lower the Dow fell 75. Points, and those, are our top business, stories. It's, one of the oldest, state houses, in the country and it's getting a major makeover in, Trenton to the tune of 300 million. Dollars senior, correspondent David, Cruz got a tour behind-the-scenes, for. A building, dating back to the late 1700s, the, Statehouse is well, looking it's aged but. A tour of the restoration, project which, to this point has consisted, of stripping away a century, of renovations. Suggest. That behind the faux walls and drop ceilings, lies, a spectacular, old, building, with, great bones and wonderful, details, our. Guide is Ray our kario the, executive, director of the state's Building Authority which. Is overseeing, the project executive. Statehouse, is the second oldest continuously. Operating, state operated, state house in the United States it, opened in 1792. Today. We'll see some of the oldest sections. Of the Statehouse some of what remains from 1792. From, the basement to the top floor the State House has undergone, 18, different renovations. From 1792. To. The mid 1900s, this, is, representative. Of the oldest sections these are Timbers that will date to the late 1790s.
Upstairs. The governor's office or what, used to be the governor's office whose, office goes where and what the rooms will be used for will, be determined, by the building, itself says Oak REO some, of the offices that you'll see on the sides here have. Been divided. Over, the years in order to provide the sort of office space that has, been needed and, we will remove non, historic, partition, walls and restore, these rooms to what their original configurations. Would, have been and the early evidence suggests, that some of those rooms were quite grand including. The governor's office this is not exactly, the condition, in which he left it but, this was the previous governor's office some. Of these details, go, back to the early 1900s. Second, floor the original, Supreme Court used, most recently by the communications. Department they. Were floor to ceiling columns, here once and a stately judges bench our, kario says it's the most damaged, by decades, of water infiltration. This. Bright, airy space used to be the dark oppressive, corridors, of, pres row. Third floor a pair of matching and spectacular, libraries. With, 30-foot, ceilings, long. Columns, skylights. And lay lights though skylights, are currently covered with the, most ingenious use of duct tape so over the years as the skylights, have failed in. Our attempts to keep water from coming in we've covered them over with aluminum, tape with duct tape and we've done everything and anything we can to try and keep water from coming in and that's been a failing effort, the skylights, have reached the point of no return looking. At some of these spaces you can be transported, to a time when mostly, men walk these corridors and, met, in these rooms, surrounded. By Victorian. Era elegance, which, they probably just considered, the, office. 230, years and 300 million dollars later says our kario it'll. Look just like that again. We're trying to look out 50 years which is really, impossible when you think about that how can you plan for 50 years but we want to be able to make sure the building is capable of performing for. This administration, and subsequent, administration's, you can argue about the price tag and people, still do but, if this were an episode of love it or list it the consensus, is we, love it outside. The Statehouse I'm David, Cruz and JE TV news, it's. The busiest, and the biggest that tops tonight's Garden, State Express first, stop Belmar curly, piss New Jersey's busiest, medical, marijuana dispensary, out of the five now in operation, the State Department of Health reports, as of last year her, leave had doubled, his patient, load to more than 6300. Dispensed. More than 2300. Pounds of cannabis and made, more than, 76,000. Transactions. Of it's 30 different strains and it anticipates getting, even busier, to meet the growing demand, Governor, Phil Murphy has expanded, the qualifying, ailments, for the program pure, leaf also just moved into a reconstructed. 61. Hundred square foot factory also, in Camden County that, makes it the biggest seller of cannabis, on the East Coast, next. To Trenton a new face for the old barracks, visitors, to the historic, site will see some new signage, it's a marker in ten, unify, the state's Revolutionary. War sites that, is to give them a common, compelling, visual, brand and of course also to boost tourism it's, part of the crossroads, of the American Revolution, national, heritage areas, statewide program, organizers. Say they want to draw attention to the state's crucial, role in the country's, fight for independence New, Jersey has more than 200, Revolutionary, War sites some, state parks already have business, sponsored cross road signs and organizers. Say it's an opportunity for local businesses, to do the same, finally. To Galloway, Township big. Honors for Hemi a chocolate, lab and Stockton. University sergeant. Tracy Stewart, that took first place in a major four-day, competition, of more than a hundred canines, and cops from 11 different states Stewart. And hemming were named the 2018. National. Champions, for explosives. Detection, and they took top honors in searches, for packages, and vehicles, forth plates for room searches, another, team from the Passaic County Sheriff's Department took the top honors for narcotics. Detection so, criminals beware, and that's, our Garden State expressed for this Thursday May 24th. 2018. Something. Up in your neighborhood. New, Jerseyans, are increasing. Their complaints, against judges a review, of the allegations, finds complaints, for telling a rape victim to keep her legs closed another.
For Having a secretary, do her son's homework, another. For hampering, the investigation. Of a boyfriend and another. For being under the influence behind. The wheel and then repeatedly, dropping, the f-bomb with, the officers, five, formal, complaints, filed against judges this year just the first five months for, for all of last year grievances. Over judicial. Behavior, or violations. Of the Code of Judicial Conduct, had been rise in the past three years when critic blames the Christie, administration for. Doing away with the vetting process but, some former Christie administration officials. Say nominees. Were still vetted, by others, a new. Criminal Justice Institute, at, Rutgers University the, attorney who's heading it up was, the director, of the New Jersey Division of criminal justice in the state attorney general's, office le honing gets you to talk about that and more le could deceive hey Michael how you doing congratulations. Thank you tell, me about this Institute so we, are launching through Rutgers a new Institute, focused, on criminal, justice and intelligence, and security we're, calling it the Institute, on secure, communities, there's three components the first one is an academic component component, where we are teaching students, in, a new minor on Intel, studies there's a criminal justice aspect of that there's a cyber aspect, of that there's, a technical aspect of that the, second one is the Miller center for community protection and resiliency, and what we're doing there is trying to take some of the work that we had done at the New Jersey Attorney General's Office in bringing. Police and communities together in cities, like Newark here Trenton. And Camden and to bring that model over to Europe and so we're doing work with, various cities in Belgium in France, in England in Poland. And, and it's a whole new model in Europe and I think already the European cities are seeing the benefit of it the, third portion of it the third Center is the center on policing and there we're looking to provide policy, support to police departments were involved in the monitor ship here with, the Newark Police Department, and we're also looking at new ways to develop, and apply big data analytics, to criminal. Justice and to security, this. Is a major step up, in terms of crime-fighting and dealing with some of the issues society, is dealing with yeah I think we're trying what we're trying to do is apply. Science, and an objective, data to. Take, on some of the complex problems that face police departments, and that face communities, and. I know you you know we've talked about bail reform in the past and that was something, that I think we've already done successfully, in that context.
Through, The judiciary. But I think it's a model that can, be applied, across. The spectrum of criminal justice of Intel, and security now. You were instrumental in the state implementing. Bail reform, in, the Garden State how, is New Jersey doing you're no longer with the attorney general's office you don't have the those, kind of restrictions, how's it doing I won't change my talking point at home even now that I'm completely free to speak out well it's been a huge success, I won't, I will not say it's been easy because it has not been easy I will not say it's been perfect, but we, are now a year and a half in the new system started January 1 2017. And the data I think is is unequivocal. It's clear you know in the first year of operation January. 1 to December 31, 2017. Our. Violent, crime rate in this state went, down by over 5%, at the same time our, County Jail incarceration. Rate pretrial, people who have not yet been tried and convicted or pled guilty went down 20% and have, both of those things happening, at the same time is. Remarkable, and I think it's undeniable as to the overarching, success, of bail or form thus far but at least some unintended. Consequences. Sure. There, are always unintended. Consequences. I mean they're their critics, out there who. Claim people. Are being released too easily you know they use the for the catch phrase catch and release and. And, have tried to sort of catch on to sensationalistic. Individual. Cases but, the question is not is the, system perfect there's no such thing as a perfect, bail system there never has been and never will be one the question is is it better than the old system absolutely. And, and you, know is it doing its job effectively, but when you compare a new system to our old system under the old system judges, were not even permitted by law to. Consider the dangerousness, of a defendant we had to change that law and we'd to amend our Constitution now. Judges. Are permitted, to consider danger, the same time we no longer have indigent, low-risk. People, locked up for months and months and months waiting trial the, bail bonds industry, is almost non-existent. As, a result of bail reform in New Jersey and they're not, happy about this so what are they doing about as far as you can get to it well they certainly fought the New Jersey effort with everything they had they brought lawsuits. Against us they hired extremely, expensive private, attorneys and. So far we we the state have prevailed in all of those lawsuits they've. Tried PR, publicity. They've tried online intimidation, i-i've, gotten. Borderline. Intimidating, messages through my public, social media accounts, and, they've tried scare tactics they've been looking for their Willie Horton they were hoping, I think in their heart of hearts that someone, would be released and commit a horrific act here in New Jersey that would turn the political, tide which also happened, under the old system, absolutely. There for. Every example of the former I'm sure, there are dozens. Of examples of that happening under the old system where people posted. Bail money, bail through a bondsman and then committed murder. Or horrible acts and there are other states now looking, at New Jersey insane this is a model, with it we've had enough time and look at this and say New Jersey is a good mom yes and that's the good news I think. The battle is largely over here in New Jersey I think it's here to stay I don't think bail reform is going to be struck down or repealed many, other states are interested in this New York being one of them in his State of the State address a few months ago Governor, Andrew Cuomo said we are going to go down this road of criminal justice reform we've, had enquiries from California. Has legislation, pending Massachusetts. I got, a call one of my last days and the AG's office a cold call from Hawaii AG's, office and. I think it's important, that the lessons of New Jersey the success, story of New Jersey be told because the bail industry, is trying to build a firewall around this state they understand, the battles lost here in New Jersey for the bail bonds people what, they don't want is other states seeing, the success that we've had and emulating, it now, you mentioned, there have been lawsuits there, was just a recent, Supreme, Court State Supreme Court ruling on this issue what, did it say about judges, and what does it mean yeah look I think that ruling was perfectly, reasonable and not unexpected, essentially what the Supreme Court said is the risk assessed assessment, tool we call it the PSA, which was developed, by NYU, is.
Not, Determinative. In other words judges, still need to use their individual, discretion for each individual, defendant, and I have no problem with that it's one of the things I've said although the risk assessment, tool is just that it's a tool it is not the be-all end-all and everyone, still has to do their jobs prosecutors. Still have to argue if some risk defense. Lawyers still should argue if someone should be let out and judges have to use their independent. Discretion, and make a decision case-by-case and, you've seen them doing that in case by case yeah absolutely I mean the the the risk assessment, is always going to be an important guideposts, but absolutely, judges have not surrendered their independence, nor should they other. States are going down is the dis road what's, your advice to them yeah 15 seconds ah it. Works and it's worth it it. Works and it's worth it absolutely anything they should avoid no. I. Mean they have to stay on top they're, gonna be intimidation, there's going to be a fight, put up by the bail bonds industry but the results will be there and you will have a better and, more just, system, as a result now Leone good to see you thank you man thank you Michael anytime you're working. And now, some noteworthy facts, that help you know Jersey the State House is the second, oldest continuously. Operated, state, capitol in the u.s. Marilyn, has the oldest curly, flu Jersey is the biggest, medical marijuana, dispensary, on the East Coast in, 2015. New Jersey taxpayers, sent, thirty two billion, dollars, more to Washington. DC than they received, in services, ninety. Seven percent of the nearly 3,400. Water, samples, collected at New Jersey beaches in 2017. Met, the state's recreational. Bathing standard, if there's, someone who you'd like to know get to know Jersey share, use hashtag, New Jersey tomorrow, on NJTV news millions. Of drivers are preparing to hit the roads this Memorial, Day weekend are they prepared for higher gasoline taxes. To share any story you've seen go to NJTV. News org, how Mike will help for all of us here thank you for watching. RWJ. Barnabas, health let's. Be healthy together. Njm. Insurance Group serving. The insurance needs, of, New Jersey residents, and businesses, for more than a hundred years and horizon. Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey an independent. Licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. You.