News

Ang Santos / WBGO

Nearly 800,000 people have been approved for the DACA program nationwide since 2012.

“All the talk of us taking away jobs and handouts is not true.”

Sara Moya is a twenty-year-old college student, a millennial, and a DACA recipient.

A New Jersey lawmaker is urging continuation of a temporary moratorium on fracking in the Delaware River watershed.

Senator Kip Bateman says the drilling process that uses high-pressure liquid to extract natural gas has benefits but allowing it in the Delaware River Basin could endanger water quality.

After hurricanes caused price spikes, the price of gasoline is starting to move lower again.

Refinery shutdowns because of Hurricane Harvey and a rush to fill up the tank in advance of Hurricane Irma caused gas prices nationally to soar to an average of $2.78 a gallon.

Tom Kloza, the global head of energy analysis at the Oil Price Information Service in Wall, New Jersey, predicts prices will slip into the two-sixties this month.

Alexandra Hill

Alzheimer’s New Jersey kicks off its “Walk to Fight Alzheimer’s” events this fall in Ocean, Hudson, Mercer and Bergen Counties. The walks are the largest events for the organization to raise awareness and fund its local programs that provide support for those impacted by Alzheimer’s disease. WBGO's Alexandra Hill recently sat down with Vice President of Development and Marketing Julie  Shculdner and this year’s Walk to Fight ambassador Giselle Bellas  to hear about what it’s like to care for a loved one living with the most common form of dementia. 

Bob Hennelly / WBGO

Ang Santos:  So Bob, in New York City, which is overwhelmingly Democratic, doesn't the primary carry the weight of the General election?

Bob Hennelly:  Absolutely, with the exception of Staten Island and some pockets in Brooklyn, it’s a sea of blue. And once the candidate gets wins in the primary they can start measuring the drapes for their new offices or old office if they are an incumbent.

AS:  Even though Mayor de Blasio is expected to win handily why is he blitzing the airwaves with commercials? 

After returning from Texas where they helped with the recovery from Hurricane Harvey, members of New Jersey Task Force 1 are heading to Florida because of Hurricane Irma.

Laura Connolly with the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management says the specially trained search and rescue crews will assist where needed in Florida.

Ang Santos / WBGO

A report from the New York State Comptroller says the amount of jobs in the Big Apple’s tech sector has grown nearly sixty percent in six years. 

“Last year, employment in the tech sector surpassed 280,000 jobs,” said New York state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli.  “Which ranked New York third in the nation after California and Texas.  Since 2010, this sector in New York State as a whole has added more than 57,000 jobs.”

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says the growth of tech job salaries is outpacing other’s in the private sector.

Aracelis Lucero
Allan Wolper for WBGO

Aracelis Lucero was born and raised in the South Bronx, won a scholarship to Middlebury College, received a Masters Degree in International Affairs from Columbia University and became a Wall Street executive.

But as immigration became a major issue in America, she gave up her career in finance to devote her life to helping Mexican children and their families, both documented and undocumented.

Lucero is now executive director of Masa-MexEd, a nonprofit organization that focuses on educating and mentoring some of the 500,000 Mexicans who live in New York City.

A New Jersey pilot program will allow Ocean County residents who believe they improperly received Medicaid benefits to withdraw from the program without fear of criminal prosecution.

State comptroller Phil Degnan says the recent arrests of 26 Lakewood residents for public assistance fraud got him thinking about what kind of program to offer.

Ang Santos / WBGO

Governor Chris Christie says the Newark Public Schools district has proven it has the programs, policies, and personnel in place to maintain progress in city schools.

“After more than 20 years of state control the progress made over the last six and a half years will afford the state the opportunity to return the Newark Public Schools to local control.  This is a watershed moment for Newark’s education community.”

Christie says the state board of education will vote next week to approve the transition of control back to Newark Public Schools.

The drinking water at nearly 400 schools in New Jersey contains lead and advocates say the state must do more to address the problem.

The state is reimbursing school districts for the costs of the water testing.

Environment New Jersey director Doug O'Malley says that's a good start, but he believes remediating lead contamination from old pipes and fixtures should be a state priority.

A new ordinance bans large tents and canopies on the beaches during the summer season at a popular Jersey Shore destination.

The restrictions in Monmouth County's Belmar take effect next year. Mayor Matt Doherty says the big tents won't be allowed between Memorial Day and Labor Day because of complaints that they take up too much space and could endanger public safety.

Bill May

Dr. Lewis Porter has been busy since penning the biography John Coltrane:  His Life and Music.  Porter, an author, musician, and educator is bringing his extensive knowledge and insight to a new project. 

“What I have are a number of short lessons about individual jazz performers, certain jazz techniques, the origins of be-bop is one of them.”

The first “Deep Dive with Lewis Porter” takes a look at pianist Art Tatum.

The Atlantic County Democratic Committee has tapped former freeholder Colin Bell to fill the seat in the New Jersey Senate left vacant by last month's death of Senator Jim Whelan.

Bell was unopposed when he won the Democratic nomination in the 2nd District Senate race in the spring. He isn't sure that becoming a incumbent Senator for a couple of months will give him an edge over Republican candidate Chris Brown who's now a state Assemblyman.

A New Jersey lawmaker wants to prohibit the Turnpike Authority and the South Jersey Transportation Authority from adding a fee when seeking payment from motorists without an E-Z pass account who go through cashless toll plazas.

Assemblywoman Annette Quijano says drivers who don't have an E-Z Pass account should not be punished with a fine.

"I'm ok with individuals getting a notice for the amount of the toll, but I'm not in favor for them to then also be charged in addition an administrative fee up to $50."

Prince of Broadway
Michael Bourne for WBGO

A new show on Broadway not only begins the New York musical theater season, it also celebrates seven decades of the greatest musicals.  Theater critic Michael Bourne reviews Prince of Broadway.

Prince of Broadway celebrates the shows produced and directed by Hal Prince.

Home
Jon Kalish for WBGO

While there’s no definitive link between the rainfall that devastated Texas and climate change, climate scientists do agree that global warming is affecting the weather. The need to reduce carbon emissions prompted a nationally acclaimed architect, Dave Sellers, to build an energy efficient house with an unconventional material.

The all-concrete house in Vermont burns no fossil fuel.

It was the worst summer in 25 years in terms of ticket sales. August tickets sales are down 35% from a year ago. The Memorial Day to Labor Day period, which accounts for about two fifths of Hollywood’s annual domestic revenue is on track to fall 16%--worse than the 10% insiders predicted in May. 

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie leaves office in January and says the opioid crisis will be his primary focus until then.

He says he’s ready to work with the legislature to do anything in the lame duck session that makes sense.

He’d like lawmakers to send him a bill that would eliminate accumulated sick time payouts for public employees.

“It’s a disgrace that we have billions of dollars being paid to people for not having been sick. It’s a disgrace. It’s an outrage to the taxpayers. I’ve been saying it for eight years.”

Some New Jersey businesses that rely on foreign students to fill seasonal jobs are hoping President Trump backs away from a campaign promise to eliminate a work visa program.

More than 5,000 foreign students each year participate in the J-1 visa program in New Jersey, working in seasonal jobs for about ten weeks and then spending a month traveling the country.

New Jersey Restaurant and Hospitality Association president Marilou Halvorsen says curtailing the program would hurt businesses that rely on those workers before and after the height of the summer tourism season.

Get ready for a big jump in gasoline prices because of the flooding in Texas.

Tom Kloza, global energy analyst at the Oil Price Information Service in Wall, New Jersey, says gas prices could rise as much as 60 cents a gallon because of refinery shutdowns that are reducing the supply.

Layla Fanucci
Allan Wolper for WBGO

For 25 years, Layla Fanucci, taught music at St. Helena Catholic School in California. But her life turned around when she bought paint and an art board at a Ben Franklin arts and crafts store.

Today, Layla, who never took an art class, has had her cityscapes shown at galleries and museums in Paris, Morocco, San Francisco, and New York City.

Ang Santos / WBGO

  A pair of industrial fans blow in the gymnasium at West Side High School in Newark.  A yoga instructor introduces the mountain pose to about one-hundred members of the school’s staff.

“We’re going into our ninth year in some city schools,” said Debbie Kaminsky, founder of Newark Yoga Movement.  “We found that after a twenty-minute session of yoga, that 64 percent of students were more peaceful and less stressed.  So with that, we started bringing yoga to more schools in Newark.  It really has traction after we taught over 26,000 students and over 3,000 educators.”

Ang Santos / WBGO

From exhibitions spotlighting Brazilian culture, to a film festival hosted at the Newark Public Library, there’s a little something for everybody during Brazil week 2017. 

“I’ve been doing this for twenty-five years.  It’s a great thing for the city of Newark because a large population of the Brazilian people here want to show the city who we are.”  said Jose Moreira, president of Newark’s Brazilian Day Festival.  “

Silvana Magda is the curator of various special Brazilian exhibitions around Newark.  In city hall this year, it’s all about female empowerment.

New Jersey is providing more manpower and supplies to help with the emergency response to flooding in Texas caused by Tropical Storm Harvey.

Governor Christie says two Blackhawk helicopters and some National Guard members with experience in Superstorm Sandy recovery efforts are going to Texas, and additional 3500 Guard members could be deployed if necessary.

Christie says New Jersey will do anything Texas officials need.

Governor Christie say 15 service areas along the New Jersey Turnpike and Garden State Parkway are in line for renovation or replacement.

Christie says HMS Host and Sunoco have agreed to invest $250 million to upgrade those rest stops in exchange for contracts to operate food and fuel concessions on those toll roads for 25 years.

Specially trained New Jersey search and rescue crews are on their way to assist Texas flood victims.

Laura Connolly with the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management says 16 members of New Jersey Task Force 1, three members of the State Police, six boats and five trucks have been deployed to Texas.

"They'll be assisting with swift water operations, with people that drove into floodwaters and are trapped, or they could be going door to door and rescuing people with the boats that we have. So, they'll be taking care of all those water operations down there."

Gasoline prices in the area are starting to move higher because of the storm that's dumping huge amounts of rain in Texas.

Patrick DeHaan is a petroleum analyst at GasBuddy-dot-com. He says refinery shutdowns on the Gulf Coast because of Hurricane Harvey are curtailing the supply of gasoline.

"I would expect gas prices would rise anywhere from 5 to 15 cents a gallon, perhaps even higher, over the next one to one-and-a-half weeks or so. It could go as high as 10 to 25 cents a gallon, maybe even 15 to 30 cents a gallon in kind of the worst-case scenario."

New Jersey Transit's management and culture came in from some blistering criticism at a legislative hearing.

Nancy Erika Smith is a civil rights lawyer. She told state lawmakers there's a toxic, corrupt, sexist, and racist atmosphere at the agency.

"If HR and EEO won't help victims, and they don't at New Jersey Transit, and employees who complain are openly retaliated against, who in their right mind will complain?"

Michael Moore
Playbill.com

Theater critic Michael Bourne gives us his thoughts on Michael Moore On Broadway.  Moore, the Academy Award-winning filmmaker behind Bowling for Columbine and Fahrenheit 9/11, brings his unrivaled powers of provocation and satire to the stage for the first time in The Terms of My Surrender. 

The world premiere one-man play is directed by Tony winner Michael Mayer.

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