Local Beat: Newark, A Love Story

Local Beat is the NJ News Commons’ weekly roundup of the best reporting by community news sources. The NJ News Commons is the flagship project of the Center for Cooperative Media. Want to get our daily New Jersey newsletter? Click here to sign up!

NEWARK: A LOVE STORY
For Valentine’s Day, Andaiye Taylor of Brick City Live asked nine individuals and couples who love Newark to talk about the places that best capture their affection for New Jersey’s largest city. The photography and design of the piece are matched only by the power and emotion of the stories.

WHAT IS A SANCTUARY CITY AND HOW DOES IT AFFECT YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD?
Several New Jersey mayors and elected officials over the last week have signed orders creating or upholding sanctuary status for their cities, but many residents are unsure how such a designation might affect their neighborhood. The TAPinto Paterson staff put together a helpful guide that takes a closer look at what it means to be a sanctuary city.

MORRISTOWN OFFICIALS TELL IMMIGRANTS: YOU HAVE NOTHING TO FEAR FROM US
Morristown’s mayor and police chief told a crowd of nervous immigrants on Tuesday that they have nothing to fear from them. Kevin Coughlin of Morristown Green says residents and immigration advocates asked the town council to declare Morristown a “Fair & Welcoming” place for immigrants with and without documentation.

WESTFIELD BOARD OF HEALTH CITES LOCAL SUBWAY FOR MULTIPLE VIOLATIONS
The Westfield Board of Health shared its January report on Monday, which contained an unsatisfactory rating issued to the local Subway sandwich shop. Michael Bruchert of TAPinto Westfield says that among the many violations cited was a lack of food safety knowledge or certification and a lack of hot water.

HIGH SCHOOL DIRECTOR’S $247K SALARY, SCHOOL VEHICLE RAISES QUESTIONS ON COMPENSATION
A director at the High Tech High School earns an annual salary of more than $247,000, was given his own school vehicle, and recently received a sick and vacation time payout of more than $15,000 last year. John Heinis of Hudson County View looked into the salary, as the director in question makes nearly $100,000 more annually than his peer directors.

SHANIQUE SPEIGHT TAPPED TO RUN IN 29TH LEGISLATIVE DISTRICT
Democratic leaders in Newark have selected former school board member and Essex County sheriff’s officer Shanique Speight to be the Assembly candidate for the 29th Legislative District. Mark Bonamo of TAPinto Newark says Speight was nominated after party leaders voted 4-2 in her favor.

BARNEGAT FORMER POLICE CHIEF EXONERATED, RETIRES
Former Barnegat Police Chief Arthur Drexler was suspended without pay last year after he was accused of giving himself compensatory time in a way that the township believed violated his contract. Now, Chris Lundy of Micromedia Publications says Drexler’s status has been changed to a separation and retirement after an investigation determined that the incident was merely the result of a disagreement on how compensatory time could be given.

CHERRY HILL FAMILIES LAUNCH NON-DENOMINATIONAL CONGREGATION FOR JEWISH FAITH, CULTURE
A rabbi in Cherry Hill is trying to counteract the dwindling number of people who are members of the Jewish faith in his South Jersey tri-country area by launching a new congregation. Matt Skoufalos of NJ Pen reports that Rabbi Larry Sernovitz has joined forces with 15 families to found “Nafshenu,” a new congregation that is intended to be more responsive to the needs of Jewish people.

About the Center for Cooperative Media: The Center is a grant-funded program of the School of Communication and Media at Montclair State University. The Center is supported with funding from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation and Democracy Fund. Its mission is to grow and strengthen local journalism, and in doing so serve New Jersey residents. For more information, visit CenterforCooperativeMedia.org.

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