North Jersey News Roundup for Oct. 26, 2020

OPINION: 2020 ELECTION. endorsed Reps. Bill Pascrell, Donald Payne, Jr. and Albio Sires in their races to serve in the House of Representatives. With veteran leadership desperately in need in the halls of Congress over the next two year on issues such as transportation and the economy, voters in the 8, 9 and 10-the Congressional Districts should return Pascrell, Payne and Sires to Washington .

Officials acknowledged another coronavirus outbreak struck the White House, infecting Vice President Mike Pence’s chief of staff and four other top aides. “We’re not going to control the pandemic,” Mark Meadows, the White House chief of staff, said on CNN’s “State of the Union” Oct. 25. “We are going to control the fact that we get vaccines, therapeutics and other mitigations, because it is a contagious virus—just like the flu.” The New York Times

Gov. Phil Murphy and First Lady Tammy Murphy again tested negative for COVID-19 on Oct. 24 after they were exposed to a staffer a week ago who later turned up positive, the third time they have tested negative since Oct. 21. Murphy senior adviser Dan Bryan, who tested positive for the virus the same day, has since received two negative tests but will stay in quarantine. Murphy and the First Lady plan to get one more COVID-19 test Oct. 26 before resuming in person events. PoliticoNJ

Seton Hall University is seeing an uptick in new coronavirus cases, which has the school urging students to be more careful off campus. A total of 27 students have tested positive for the virus in October, traced back to two clusters—one among various athletic programs and the other within a Greek organization. News12 New Jersey

All four Bergen County Technical High School locations will be closed until at least mid-January 2021 after two positive COVID-19 tests at the schools during the first week of in-person instruction. In a letter sent to parents, Superintendent Howard Lerner explained that he consulted with county health officials before deciding to shutter the physical school buildings until at least Jan. 15, 2021. The Record

Kearny, Harrison and Union City have seen the highest per capita increase in the coronavirus in the past week. One in about every 350 Harrison and Kearny residents were infected by coronavirus last week, according to calculations based on county data and census population estimates. In Union City, it was one in 486. The Jersey Journal

Gov. Phil Murphy signed an executive order to extend New Jersey’s public health emergency triggered by the coronavirus outbreak. This is the eighth time the governor has extended it as public health emergencies expire every 30 days unless renewed. The extension will not reverse any of the gradual reopening steps the state has taken and keeps Murphy’s other executive orders in place.

The Department of the Treasury reported September revenue collections for the major taxes were down 4.4% from 2019 and down nearly 9% for the first quarter of the financial year. Revenues totaled approximately $3.5 billion, down $161.0 million from September 2019. Fiscal year-to-date, total collections of $5.6 billion are down $535.7 million, or 8.7% below the same three months last year. The state’s treasury officials are projecting FY 2021 collections to remain weak into the Winter months followed by a return to collection growth next Spring and Summer.

U.S. stock futures and oil prices fell Oct. 26, as coronavirus cases surged in the U.S. and Europe, adding to worries about the economic outlook after Congress and the White House failed to agree on a much-anticipated COVID-19 fiscal stimulus deal. Scientists had been expecting cooler weather to lead to a second wave of the disease, but it is coming earlier than many had anticipated. That is prompting fresh concerns about tighter lockdown restrictions and the effect on the economy. The Wall Street Journal

Rep. Josh Gottheimer spoke out against a proposed online financial tax New Jersey legislators are considering to help close a growing budget gap. If enacted, Gottheimer believes the tax would force data processing centers out of the state and cause a multi-million loss in local tax revenue. “As soon as the state imposes this new tax, the back-end of the stock exchange here in Mahwah and all the banks that have a presence here will move, in unison, to a new location out-of-state,” he said.

New Jersey Homeland Security officials are warning voters about enemy disinformation campaigns to sow discord and discredit the November election. Disinformation has become so commonplace that the state Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness now maintains two rumor control websites to debunk such hoaxes, one of which focuses on COVID-19.

New Jersey voters have cast just over 2.5 million mail-in ballots for the 2020 general election as of Oct. 25. That brings the total statewide turnout of ballots received and recorded by county election officials to 41.4%. With nine days left to go, 63% of all votes cast in the 2016 presidential election are already in. New Jersey Globe

Republicans hoping to seize control of the Paramus Borough Council have gotten a boost from a super PAC linked to former Gov. Chris Christie. Just the Facts, run by longtime Christie aide Peter Sheridan, is funding campaign mailers supporting Republican Councilman Chris DiPiazza and his running mate, former Councilman Mike Rohdieck. They are running against Democrats Councilwoman MariaElana Bellinger and Dominick Minervini on Nov. 3 in a race that could decide whether one party wins a majority of the six-member council, currently deadlocked 3-3. The Record

NJ Transit published a path forward for its NJ Transitgrid project, forming a special board committee to oversee the plan. The plan will incorporate renewable energy technology to align with the goals presented in Gov. Phil Murphy’s Energy Master Plan. The proposal calls for up to $3 million in stipends to be provided to qualified bidders in order to develop proposals that are environmentally-sound.

And finallyAll 337 Bruce Springsteen songs, ranked, including the songs from his new Letter To You album.

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