NEWS, SPORTS, COMMENTARY, POLITICS for Gloucester City and the Surrounding Areas of South Jersey and Philadelphia

84 posts categorized "THE CENTER SQUARE" Feed

Report: Majority of U.S. cities unprepared for financial fallout from statewide shutdowns

RELATED: Peyton and Me Meandering Through S.J. (Gloucester City, Mt. Ephraim) Chapter VII By Bethany Blankley | The Center Square (The Center Square) – The majority of U.S. cities were ill-prepared for any financial crisis last year, let alone the one brought about by their respective state shutdowns in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, a new reportpublished by the nonprofit Truth in Accounting (TIA) concludes. LOVE YOUR MONEY Gloucestercitynews.net files The annual assessment surveys the fiscal health of the 75 largest municipalities in the U.S. based on fiscal year 2019 data. TIA reviewed audited Comprehensive Annual Financial Reports filed by... Read more →


NJ Senate Republicans call for investigative committee to probe nursing home deaths

By Todd DeFeo | The Center Square (The Center Square) – New Jersey Senate Republicans want Senate President Steve Sweeney, D-Gloucester, to form a bipartisan investigative committee to probe nursing home deaths in the Garden State. The 15 members of the Senate Republican caucus signed the letter to Sweeney. It follows similar requests Republican lawmakers have made since May. “To date, nearly 8,000 residents and staff of our nursing homes and veterans homes have died, with the loss of life still rising at a tragic rate,” they wrote. “In fact, deaths in our nursing homes tripled in December from the... Read more →


Attorney General of NY Says Cuomo Administration Failed to Report COVID 19 Deaths

By Steve Bittenbender | The Center Square (The Center Square) – A bombshell report by New York Attorney General Letitia James claims the Cuomo administration dramatically underreported the number of nursing home deaths due to COVID-19, and Gloucestercitynews.net files Republican leaders are calling for resignations at the highest levels. The report by James’ office requested data from 62 nursing homes, roughly 10 percent of the state’s facilities. It indicates that the state Department of Health did not count nursing home residents who contracted the virus, were sent to hospitals and died there as part of the nursing home death toll.... Read more →


GUEST OPINION: COVID-19 vaccine ad void leaves states with millions of doses

Steve Miller / RealClearInvestigations/THE CENTER SQUARE On Interstate 59, a neon billboard used by the Alabama Department of Public Health advises motorists to get their flu and pneumonia vaccines. Placards placed atop gas pumps around the state also promote the flu Gloucestercitynews.net files vaccine. But the vaccine that will quell COVID-19, a virus that has killed 400,000 nationwide, crippled businesses and prompted governments to force onerous restrictions on the public, gets no mention. Karen Landers, a spokeswoman for the Alabama Department of Health, said the state has “no specific marketing campaign going on” because “the vaccine supply is less than... Read more →


Harrisburg, PA Woman Arrested for Stealing Pelosi's Laptop from Capitol Building January 6

By Christen Smith | The Center Square (The Center Square) – Federal authorities arrested a Pennsylvania woman Monday and accused her of stealing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s laptop during the Jan. 6 breach of Capitol Hill. Riley June Williams was taken into custody in Dauphin County, Pa., for her alleged role in the Jan. 6 Capitol Hill breach. Dauphin County Prison Riley June Williams, of Harrisburg, was taken into custody after a former romantic partner told the FBI she took the computer during the attack and attempted to sell it to Russian intelligence officials. She’s been charged with violent entry... Read more →


NJ Amusement Parks 6th highest in value in 2019

By Mary Stroka | The Center Square (The Center Square) – Home to Mountain Creek Waterpark, Tomahawk Lake Water Park, Storybook Land, Land of Make Believe, (Wild West City, Casino Pier, and many more attractions, New Jersey stacked up as the sixth highest-producing state for value-added from amusement parks and water parks in 2019, according to a Bureau of Economic Analysis report from the U.S. Department of Commerce. The Garden State brought in $309 million of the estimated $14.1 billion that amusement parks and water parks across the nation added to the economy that year. Florida (at $5.9 billion), California... Read more →


NJ Congressman Pleads with Biden to Focus on Funding of Gateway Program

By Todd DeFeo | The Center Square (The Center Square) – A New Jersey congressman is calling for President-elect Joe Biden to prioritize – and fund – the Gateway Program. “I know President-elect Biden understands the importance of modern infrastructure to a successful economy,” U.S. Rep. Donald Payne Jr., D-New Jersey, said in a statement. “That is why I am confident his administration will give the Gateway Program the federal funding and resources necessary to improve transportation throughout the Northeast Corridor.” The Gateway Program, which Payne pegged at costing $30 billion, is a plan to improve the busy Northeast Corridor... Read more →


NJ Seafood Workers Want To Be First

By Steve Bittenbender | The Center Square (The Center Square) – A group of New Jersey fishing businesses and organizations sent a letter to New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy this month urging him to keep the seafood industry’s workers as a high-priority group for COVID-19 vaccinations. Seafood employees, like others in the food processing industry, are considered essential workers. According to guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, that group falls in Phase 1b, along with public transit employees, first responders as well as teachers and other school staff. Those federal guidelines, though, stand just as a... Read more →


$58 million for New Jersey Police Departments to Purchase Body Cameras for Officers

By Todd DeFeo | The Center Square (The Center Square) – Gov. Phil Murphy has signed into law legislation to help municipalities buy body cameras for local police officers. Getty Images The measure makes a $58 million supplemental appropriation for the Department of Law and Public Safety to create the New Jersey Statewide Body-Worn Camera (BWC) grant program. Assembly members Benjie Wimberly, D-Bergen/Passaic; Verlina Reynolds-Jackson, D-Mercer/Hunterdon; Cleopatra Tucker, D-Essex; and Thomas Giblin, D-Essex, sponsored the measure. “The recent events we’ve witnessed nationwide involving police officers have urged states to do more to increase the safety of residents, communities and its... Read more →


Pennsylvania Department of State Dismisses Voter Discrepancies as Partisan Conjecture

By Christen Smith | The Center Square (The Center Square) – The Pennsylvania Department of State dismissed election return discrepancies as partisan conjecture after Republican lawmakers insisted officials counted an additional 170,000 ballots in error. Gloucestercitynews.net files A group of conservative lawmakers, led by Lebanon County Rep. Frank Ryan, said an analysis of data pulled from DoS/SURE system records indicate that although only 6.7 million residents voted on Nov. 3, more than 6.9 million ballots were cast and included in the state’s certified results. Additionally, the lawmakers noted, total votes cast for the presidential race trailed the certified results by... Read more →


New York City Hotel Association Says Many Members on Verge of Closing for Good

By Sarah Downey | The Center Square (The Center Square) – With mandated closures continuing to impact New York City’s hospitality sector, the combination of single-digit occupancy levels and mortgage issues have led some to close and have others nearing the precipice. “Industry revenue is down, on average, by 80% year-on-year since March 25 … [Gov. Andrew Cuomo's] New York ‘pause’ order date,” Vijay Dandapani, president and CEO of the Hotel Association of New York City, told The Center Square by email. “Occupancy is at or below 10% and not the 40% number seen in some publications. “The reason for... Read more →


President Trump Campaign, Allies Still Seeking Avenue to Overturn Results

By Delphine Luneau | The Center Square (The Center Square) – On the heels of its federal lawsuit being dismissed, the Trump campaign has filed an appeal to try once again to overturn the results of the presidential election in Pennsylvania. The case was thrown out Saturday by U.S. District Judge Matthew Brann, but the campaign turned to the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals to try to resurrect their case, asking for a chance to amend their lawsuit. Brann allowed the campaign to alter the lawsuit once, and that resulted in a number of election fraud allegations being removed. After... Read more →


SA urges travelers to enroll in TSA PreCheck® ahead of holiday travel

Experience faster TSA screening without removing shoes, belts and laptops WASHINGTON – The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) launched a new “Travel With Ease” campaign to urge airline passengers to enroll in TSA PreCheck® prior to their holiday travel. The campaign reinforces the concept that TSA PreCheck benefits may be more relevant today than ever before because it allows travelers to ease back to traveling with greater comfort, convenience and the least amount of physical contact. “TSA has made considerable changes to its checkpoint processes to make commercial air travel more safe and secure for everyone during the pandemic,” said TSA... Read more →


Trump Legal Team Rejects Media Reports that Pennsylvania Lawsuit Dropped

By Kim Jarrett | The Center Square 8 hrs ago (The Center Square) – President Donald Trump pushed back Monday at reports his campaign was dropping a legal challenge to more than 682,000 ballots cast in the Pennsylvania general election. The Trump campaign is questioning the mainly mail-in ballots, saying they were “deliberately concealed” from Republican observers. The Washington Post reported Sunday that a revised lawsuit removed the challenge. Trump and lead attorney Rudy Giuliani said that was not true in a series of Twitter posts on Monday. The Trump campaign released a statement citing paragraph 4 of the amended... Read more →


GOOD NEWS: Pfizer study shows its COVID vaccine is more than 90% effective

By Dan McCaleb | The Center Square (The Center Square) – Pfizer said Monday that the COVID-19 vaccine it is developing with BioNTech SE proved to be more than 90% effective in preventing new coronavirus infections in a study of thousands of volunteers. “Today is a great day for science and humanity. The first set of results from our Phase 3 COVID-19 vaccine trial provides the initial evidence of our vaccine’s ability to prevent COVID-19,” Dr. Albert Bourla, Pfizer Chairman and CEO, said in a statement. “We are reaching this critical milestone in our vaccine development program at a time... Read more →


$18.2M for Trenton Transit Center Rehabilitation Project

By Todd DeFeo | The Center Squae (The Center Square) – The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) is sending more than $18.2 million to N.J. Transit to help pay for upgrades to the Trenton Transit Center, improving the station’s oft-maligned condition. The money is part of more than $291 million in funding the FRA announced for 11 intercity passenger rail projects in nine states. The money is part of the “Federal-State Partnership State of Good Repair Program.” The total station rehabilitation is expected to cost nearly $27 million. N.J. Transit will chip in roughly $7.1 million, while Amtrak will contribute another... Read more →


Trenton's Plan to Tax Financial Transactions, One More Blow To The Business Community

By Kim Jarrett | The Center Square (The Center Square) – Business leaders say a proposed tax on financial transactions will likely “backfire” and urged lawmakers to reconsider the legislation. Gloucestercitynews.net graphic files The bill sponsored by Assemblyman John McKeon would impose a tax of one-hundredth of a penny – a decrease from the original proposal of one-quarter of a penny – for the next two years. The tax would raise an estimated $500 million annually for a total of $1 billion over the two year period. “Although it will mean a lot to the taxpayers of New Jersey, it... Read more →


Amtrak wants billions in additional funding for the Northeast Corridor

By Todd DeFeo | The Center Square (The Center Square) – Amtrak wants more than $1.7 billion in federal tax dollars for the Northeast Corridor, William J. Flynn, Amtrak’s president & CEO, said in a letter to congressional leaders. The money is part of more than $4.8 billion the railroad wants in the 2021 fiscal year to help it recover from COVID-19. Amtrak says it might need to eliminate 2,400 jobs and curtail service if it doesn’t get the money. Amtrak runs high-speed passenger trains on the Northeast Corridor between Washington and Boston. Several transit agencies operate over the corridor,... Read more →


NEW STUDY: Biden administration would impact Pennsylvania, other battleground states

By Dave Fidlin | The Center Square (The Center Square) – Pennsylvania would experience “a marked difference” if Democrat candidate Joe Biden entered the Oval Office and enacted his policy agenda, according to a just-released study. The James Madison Institute, a Florida-based free market think tank, has taken the wraps off an analysis of each presidential candidates’ agenda and explored how policy proposals would impact battleground states’ job markets and economies. The report, Battleground States 2020, asserts Biden and Vice President candidate Kamala Harris would cost U.S. taxpayers an additional $36 trillion over 10 years if their policy agenda came... Read more →


Warning Signs Point to Mail Ballot Chaos Coming to Pennsylvania in November

By Mark Hemingway THE CENTER SQUARE The state of Pennsylvania is rapidly emerging as a contentious battleground where Republicans and Democrats are fighting over one of the most hot-button issues in November’s election – the use of mail-in ballots. On Thursday, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany highlighted Republican concerns in the Keystone State. “It’s a system that’s subject to fraud,” she said at a press briefing. “I can confirm for you that Trump ballots, ballots for the president, were found in Pennsylvania.” The FBI and state police are now investigating after the U.S. attorney’s office reported that nine military... Read more →


Guest Opinion: Post Office May Be Offering 5G

x By Ross Marchand Across the country, Americans are starting to reap the benefits of lightning-fast 5G services. Rural, unserved users stand to benefit the most from the “latest and greatest” generation of mobile connectivity standards, since 5G services are significantly faster than 4G and the deployment only requires a pizza box-sized small cell deployment to operate. In order to help speed up deployment, the United States Postal Service (USPS) may be offering up its facilities as 5G deployment sites, allowing internet providers an alternative to the onerous attachment regulations and fees imposed by many localities. While this arrangement could... Read more →


NJ Republicans Describe Murphy's Approved $32.7 Billion Budget as Fraudulent & Fake

By Kim Jarrett | The Center Square (The Center Square) – The Democratic-controlled New Jersey Legislature passed a $32.7 billion state budget Thursday, but not before a heated debate with Republicans. Gloucestercitynews.net files LOVE YOUR MONEY The budget, which takes effect Oct. 1 and runs through June 30, 2021, includes an increased tax on income of more than $1 million and a 2.5 percent surcharge on corporate profits over $1 million. This year’s budget does not include a tax rebate of up to $500 for couples with children that meet certain income limits that is part of a budget compromise... Read more →


Guest Opinion: State Legislators Should Pass the Reforms Pennsylvanias Actually Need

By Nathan Benefield THE CENTER SQUARE Sep 18, 2020 In recent weeks, Gov. Tom Wolf called on state legislators to enact parts of his political agenda – including legalizing recreational marijuana and mandating small businesses provide workers with paid leave benefits. Such proposals exhibit Wolf’s disconnect from what Pennsylvanians care most about during this crisis: schools, jobs and health care. Wolf, moreover, hasn’t called lawmakers to discuss his ideas or to hear their proposals. In fact, at a recent press conference, the governor couldn’t remember the last time that he spoke with legislative leaders. According to Senate Majority Leader Jake... Read more →


President Trump, Senator McConnell signal intention to move quickly to replace Ginsburg

By Dave Lemery | The Center Square (The Center Square) – In the aftermath of the death Friday of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, President Donald Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made clear that they will be moving quickly to fill the vacancy. McConnell released a statement late Friday saying that he would be prepared to call for a vote in the Senate once the president selects a nominee. To some observers, that stands in contrast to his decision in 2015 not to allow a vote on former President Barack Obama’s nomination of a replacement after the... Read more →


FEDERAL JUDGE SAYS WOLF EXCEEDED HIS AUTHORITY BY CLOSING BUSINESSES

By Dave Lemery | The Center Square (The Center Square)(SEPT. 14, 2020) – A federal judge on Monday threw out portions of the Wolf administration’s orders that restricted activity during the coronavirus pandemic, saying GLOUCESTERCITYNEWS.NET FILES that the governor had exceeded his authority. The ruling by Judge William Stickman in the Western District of Pennsylvania court delivers to Gov. Tom Wolf’s political opponents what they had failed to achieve for months in the Legislature as bill after bill to curtail the governor’s power was passed, only to be vetoed. Specifically at issue were the administration’s orders closing “non-life-sustaining businesses” and... Read more →


Murphy Wants More Time to Respond to Lawsuit to Stop Voting by Mail in New Jersey

By Steve Bittenbender | The Center Square (The Center Square) – New Jersey officials asked a federal judge Friday for more time to respond to a lawsuit filed by President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign seeking to stop an order by Gov. Phil Murphy allowing all voters to cast their ballots by mail. Gloucestercitynews.net files Murphy and Secretary of State Tahesha Way are supposed to respond to the complaint by Sept. 14. However, in the request submitted by the state’s Attorney General’s office, they noted that they did not receive the lawsuit until Aug. 24, six days after the campaign filed... Read more →


Republican Leader Says Recreational Marijuana Deal in Pennsylvania Unlikely This Fall

By Christen Smith | The Center Square (The Center Square) – No matter how much Gov. Tom Wolf may support it, one of the Senate’s highest-ranking Republicans said a deal legalizing recreational marijuana this fall just won’t happen. “Like with any issue, a bill would need to work its way through the Senate Committee process to be vetted,” said Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman, R-Centre. “Movement on this issue should not be expected his fall.” Corman’s comments follow a Thursday news conference from Gov. Tom Wolf again calling on the Legislature to enable recreational cannabis and use the tax revenue... Read more →


Murphy's New Election Law Allows Ballots to be Counted 10 Days Before Nov. 3

SOME FEAR THIS COULD LEAD TO LEAKS “If anyone thinks that won’t happen, they’re delusional. Giving campaign operatives access to confidential vote counts before Election Day would be an unfair advantage that could be used to change the outcome of elections.” ~Sen. Anthony Bucco, R-Morris By Kim Jarrett | The Center Square A woman wearing gloves drops off a mail-in ballot July 7, 2020, at a drop box in Hackensack, New Jersey. Seth Wenig / AP photo (The Center Square) – A battle continues over how New Jersey residents will vote and how those ballots will be counted with just... Read more →


CNBNews Opinion:Leave NJ Why You Can...

Tax & Spend Murphy is at it Again

William E. Cleary Sr. | CNBNews (Gloucestercitynews.net)(August 31, 2020)--The state's gas tax will increase by 9.3 cents on October 1 because, ….hold on to your face mask…. people are driving less. In other words, residents of NJ have been conserving energy so Murphy decides to increase the gas tax. The last time he raised the gas tax he said the roads and bridges needed to be repaired. This will bring the gas tax total in New Jersey to 50.7 cents. Diesel will also be taxed by 57.7 cents per gallon as of October 1. This is because less gas was... Read more →


DOJ Investigating Wuhan Virus Nursing Home Deaths in NY, Michigan, NJ and PA

By Steve Bittenbender | The Center Square (The Center Square) – Four Democratic governors, including New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, received letters Wednesday from the U.S. Department of Justice requesting data on the impact COVID-19 has had on public nursing homes in their states. Gloucestercitynews.net files The letters, which were also sent to Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy and Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, say the department’s Civil Rights Division is considering whether to conduct an investigation on nursing homes operated by the state or a local government. “Protecting the rights of some of society’s most vulnerable... Read more →


SURVEY: 20 Percent of Small Business Owners Will Close if Economic Conditions Don't improve

By Bethany Blankley | The Center Square (The Center Square) – More than 20 percent of small business owners said they will have to close permanently if current economic conditions do not improve within the next six months, according to a survey conducted by the National Federation of Independent Business. The largest small business association in the U.S., headquartered in Nashville, conducted the survey to assess the financial health of small businesses. The survey found that 21 percent of small business owners said they will have to close without improved economic conditions within the next six months. An additional 19... Read more →


Federal Judge Halts Lawsuit Against Pennsylvania Ballot Collection Rules

By Christen Smith | The Center Square (The Center Square) – A federal judge halted a lawsuit filed in June against Pennsylvania election officials regarding the state’s ballot collection procedures, preferring instead for lower courts to rule on the issue first. Nicholas Ranjan, of the U.S. District Court in the Western District of Pennsylvania, said in a filing Sunday that his order will “apply the brakes … and allow the state courts to weigh in and interpret the state statutes that undergird Plaintiffs' federal- constitutional claims. "After carefully considering the arguments raised by the parties, the Court finds that the... Read more →


80 Percent of NJ Restaurant Employees Still Out of Work Because of Murphy's Unreasonable Lock Down

By Kim Jarrett | The Center Square (The Center Square) – About 80 percent of restaurant workers in New Jersey are still unemployed, according to information shared during a roundtable discussion hosted by New Jersey Assemblyman Brian Bergen. Gloucestercitynews.net files New Jersey’s restaurant industry employs about 300,000 workers, and most of them have not returned to work, according to information from the New Jersey Restaurant and Hospitality Association. Republicans are continuing to criticize Gov. Phil Murphy for keeping businesses, especially restaurants, closed during COVID-19, and one Democrat is asking Murphy to consider a regional reopening plan. Murphy is allowing outdoor... Read more →


Losing Electrical Power for Days Not Acceptable Say New Jersey Lawmakers

image unsplash.com By Kim Jarrett | The Center Square (The Center Square) – Angered by long lag times after tropical storm Isaias, New Jersey lawmakers are encouraging utility companies to have a backup plan to prevent widespread power outages during storms. The Assembly Telecommunication and Utilities and Homeland Security Committees held a joint hearing on the outages that occurred after Isaias. Assembly Telecommunication and Utilities Chairman Wayne DeAngelo and Assemblywoman Angela McKnight issued statements after their joint hearing on the widespread utility outages occurring after the storm. “We’ve seen this time and time again,” DeAngelo said. “With many residents working... Read more →