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In Print: Incentives update; Lesniak rips Barchi

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The Economic Opportunity Act won’t pass until at least next month.

That much has been clear for a number of days, despite the hopes of the state's economic development community. But this week’s State Street column takes a look at some of the last-minute machinations ahead of last week’s Assembly Budget Committee vote to release the measure, as well as the potential impacts of the delay.

State Street also takes a look at Bergen County’s Blue Laws, which restrict commerce on Sundays. That’s ironic, according to John Holub of the New Jersey Retail Merchants Association, because perhaps the largest commercial event in the state’s history – Super Bowl XLVIII – takes place on a Sunday.

Finally, State Street talks with the new communications chief at Public Strategies Impact, the powerhouse Trenton lobbying firm that last week announced it would branch into strategic communications.

In Grapevine, meanwhile, Sen. Raymond Lesniak (D-Union) lets loose on Rutgers University President Robert Barchi, saying the controversial administrator was too quick to force out Athletic Director Tim Pernetti in the wake of the Mike Rice scandal. Lesniak invites Barchi and the Board of Governors to reverse the decision.

Grapevine also has news on one of the hottest energy issues in New Jersey right now, Public Service Electric & Gas’s $3.9 billion Energy Strong proposal. Actually, it’s not really news so much as an exchange of heated words. The Chemistry Council of New Jersey has been among the most vocal opponents of the proposal, and Public Service Enterprise Group CEO Ralph Izzo apparently isn’t very happy about that.

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