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MENTAL HEALTH IS ON THE BALLOT TOMORROW: TWO CITIES

 

Voters in Metuchen and Collingswood will have the opportunity tomorrow to approve or deny funding to improve mental health services in local schools. In Metuchen, a 'yes' vote would cost the average taxpayer about $133 a year 4ef2ddad-68fe-4367-af9d-5f794a541b69($700,000 in property taxes). In Collingswood, it's $48 a year ($225,000 in property taxes). But education wonks argue that a ballot question isn't how mental health services should be funded. A student can't learn if she's suicidal, advocates say, so therapists and psychiatrists are essential. Two options would fund mental health services without asking voters: lifting districts' two percent spending increase cap, and working to permanently factor in these services in the school funding formula, which is a statewide distribution of aid. (NJ.com)

THIS IS NJ'S MOST EXPENSIVE LOCAL REFERENDUM — EVER

More than $5 million has flooded into Jersey City this year over a local ballot referendum that would regulate short-term rentals like Airbnb. It's not a ban, though that disinformation has spread via Keep Our Homes, an Airbnb-backed group. On the other side is the hotel lobby, which has spent $1 million. Here's what the referendum would do: mandate regular safety inspections, restrict rentals in bigger buildings (four units or more), and limit listings to no more than 60 days per year when the property owner doesn't live onsite. (NJTV News)

RUTGERS TO INVESTIGATE SOFTBALL TEAM: ALLEGED ABUSE

In a statement released on Thursday, Rutgers President Robert Barchi announced that he has "called for an outside investigation into the reported allegations" about the university's softball program, which are now the subject of a lawsuit brought by eight former players. The report by Matthew Stanmyreand Keith Sargeant is a difficult but powerful read. (TAPinto Newark / NJ.com)

WHITE WOMAN SUES STARBUCKS OVER ALLEGED BIAS

A former regional director at Starbucks who oversaw 100 stores in four states is suing the company, alleging she was fired because she voiced support for a manager — also a white woman — who called Philadelphia police last year in an incident that garnered national attention. "I was terminated because I am white," she writes. She also claims she was targeted for defending a district manager who was placed on leave as "not racist." (Cherry Hill Courier-Post)

 

🙈 We're also keeping an eye on—

  • Preventive health care for Newark’s Latino community (NJTV News)
  • NJ towns don’t always admit being scammed by hackers. (NJ.com)
  • CLEAR biometric security screening debuts at EWR Airport (NJTV News)
  • Democrat Jeff Van Drew voted against the Trump impeachment inquiry. ‘We’re coming for him,’ New Jersey activists vow. (The Inquirer)
ELECTION 2019:
  • Want to give veterans a tax break? Vote in Tuesday’s election. (NJ.com)
  • NJ teen activists say they should be able to vote at 16 (The Record)
  • Elections: How Jersey breaks red and blue in all 21 counties (NJ.com)
PLUS:
 

😜 Not everything is terrible—

  • Trenton’s Roebling building now holds an indoor skateboard park (WHYY)
  • McGovern's Tavern, beloved Newark icon, reopens (TAPinto Newark)
  • A Hoboken tour offers many artful entries (The Jersey Journal)
  • Paulinskill Viaduct is beloved by many, but its future is uncertain (NJ.com)
  • HBO mentorship program devoted to young filmmakers (NJTV News)

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