Category Archives: Tom Hester

>White House says N.J. benefits from proposed tax cuts


I posted the following just for some balance to offset the argument of the previous post.

From Tom Hester Jr. @

New Jersey stands to benefit if the House acts quickly on a bipartisan package that extends unemployment benefits and tax cuts, White House officials said Wednesday.

As many 4.7 million New Jerseyans would see more money in their paychecks because of the proposed 2 percent payroll tax cut. If the legislation is not approved, a typical working family faced a tax increase of over $3,000 on Jan. 1.

At least 321,774 New Jerseyans who have been jobless for an extended period would continue to receive jobless benefits under the legislation. If the package is not approved, the jobless benefits would end in the weeks ahead.

The package also includes an extension of the American Opportunity tax credit, which was used by 281,000 New Jersey families last year to help pay for college tuition.

Additional tax cuts in the legislation that also are geared at middle-class families include the Earned Income Tax Credit, designed to help families to climb out of poverty, and the Child Tax Credit extension, that would make sure families don’t see their taxes jump by up to $1,000 for every child.

“This tax cut plan, while not perfect, will help to grow our economy and create jobs in the private sector,” President Obama said. “It will help to lift up middle class families, who will no longer need to worry about a New Year’s Day tax hike. It will offer emergency relief to help tide folks over until they find another job. And it includes tax cuts to make college more affordable; help parents to provide for their children; and help businesses, large and small, to expand and hire. We worked hard to negotiate an agreement that’s a win for middle-class families, and a win for our economy, and we can’t afford to let it fall victim to delay and defeat. So, I urge Members of Congress to pass these tax cuts as swiftly as possible.”

White House officials described the proposals as responsible, temporary measures designed to support the national economy that will not add costs by the middle of the decade. Obama does not believe it is affordable to make the high-income tax cuts permanent and will continue to make his case for why the administration cannot extend these measures beyond 2012.

The Senate voted 81-19 in favor of the bipartisan tax cut package Wednesday afternoon. It now moves to the House of Representatives for consideration.

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Filed under Bush Tax Cuts, New Jersey, New Jersey Newsroom, President Obama, tax cuts, the White House, Tom Hester

Women Turn Away From Christie Over Mammogram Issue


Democracy Corps poll finds Corzine now ahead of Republican challenger by 3 percentage points

With less than four weeks remaining before Election Day, a new Democracy Corps poll made public Thursday gives Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine a 3 percentage point lead over Republican challenger Chris Christie.

Corzine leads 41 percent to Christie’s 38 percent with Independent Chris Daggett garnering 14 percent, his highest level yet.

Earlier in the week, another poll showed Corzine with a 1 percentage point lead.

The poll found that a barrage of criticism by Corzine’s campaign over Christie’s position on insurance coverage for mammograms for women turned potential women voters, especially independent women, against the Republican.

The poll was conducted for Washington-based Democracy Corps by Greenberg Quinlan, Rosner Research. James Carville and Stan Greenberg, who run the non-profit Democracy Corps have worked in the past as Democratic Party strategists.

The poll found Corzine has consolidated the vote among his base, crossing the 80 percent threshold among Democrats and winning for the first time more Democrats that Christie has Republicans.

The poll also found Christie’s standing has declined markedly in the last two weeks, with 42 percent now rating the Rep ublican as unfavorable versus 30 percent who rate him favorably. The 12-point favorability decline equals a 10-point decline from two weeks ago.

Corzine is rated favorably by 37 percent of voters and unfavorably by 46 percent.

The poll states, “As he faced a withering assault from Corzine and independent groups over the issue of insurance coverage of mammograms, Christie has lost significant ground with women, especially independent women. He now posts a net favorability rating of -19 with women, down from -7 two weeks ago. Among independent women, the drop is even more pronounced: from -7 two weeks ago to -34 today, with half the independent women giving him an unfavorable rating. This has clearly benefited Corzine in the vote as the governor now leads among women by 14 points, up from 6 points two weeks ago.”

Daggett is identified by 45 percent of voters, an increase of 16 points over the last two weeks, though his overall favorability ratings remain only lukewarm at -4 points, about where he has been since the poll began tracking the race in August.

The poll was conducted Tuesday and Wednesday among 614 likely voters. The margin of error is plus or minus 4 percent.

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Filed under Chris Christie, Democracy Corps, Gov. Jon Corzine, mammograms, New Jersey Newsroom, opinion poll, Tom Hester

Number of New Jerseyans without health insurance dropped by 11 percent in 2007-08

The published an artilce today detailing how the number of New Jerseyan without health insurance dropped more than 11 percent thanks mainly to the efforts of Governor Corzine and the NJ Health Care Reform Act of 2008, which he signed into law in July.

The NJ FamilyCare Program is a free or low-cost program for income-eligible families. A family of four earning up to $77,175 or 350 percent of the federal poverty level, can qualify to insure their children for about $130 a month in the state and federally funded program.

Below is an excerpt from the Tom Hester’s column at the newsroom followed by a video released earlier today by the Governor’s office which announced the remarkable drop in the number of uninsured New Jerseyans:

“The number of New Jerseyans without health insurance decreased by more than 11 percent or by 147,000 individuals, the second largest reduction in the nation between 2007 and 2008, Gov. Jon Corzine said Monday.

At the same time, the number of uninsured in the United States rose by 1.5 percent, according to a U.S. Census report on the income, poverty and health insurance coverage nationwide in 2008.

Corzine credited what he described as aggressive initiatives aimed at enrolling the uninsured for the declining New Jersey rate. He also credited the decrease to the landmark New Jersey Health Care Reform Act of 2008 that he signed into law in July, which expanded health insurance eligibility and provided more access to affordable health insurance for children.

“Families cannot build a strong economic future for their children without stable, secure and affordable health insurance and that is what our administration has been working to accomplish,” Corzine said.

“In New Jersey, we are setting the national standard to ensure our families have secure and affordable health care and our children have a healthy start in life. We have ramped up our enrollment efforts and worked fervently by expanding NJ FamilyCare to include a child mandate. We said, ‘No,’ to the Bush administration when it tried to cut 10,000 kids out of New Jersey’s Family Care Program and we have implemented a new Express Lane option to reach and enroll every eligible child. Providing access to affordable health insurance and expanding eligibility has and will continue to be a priority of my Administration.”…”

Read more >>> Here

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Filed under Gov. Jon Corzine, health insurance, low-cost, New Jersey, New Jersey Newsroom, NJ FamilyCare, poverty level, Tom Hester

Thanks Governor Corzine!: inVentiv Health expands, moves into new headquarters in Somerset County

Tom Hester,

More than 500 inVentiv Health employees Wednesday joined business clients and state and local officials in Franklin at the company’s new four-story, 154,000-square-foot headquarters to celebrate the firm’s decision to remain and attempt to expand in New Jersey.

inVentiv Health, a leading provider of commercialization services to global pharmaceutical and health care industries, recently relocated to new headquarters at 500 Atrium Drive. The location is enabling the company to consolidate several offices in the region.

“inVentiv Health’s choice to expand its operations in the Garden State is good news for New Jersey,” Gov. Jon Corzine said. “The company’s investment here is evidence that even during a global economic recession, this state remains a desirable location for business growth and expansion.”

“Creating and retaining jobs in New Jersey is the major focus of Governor Corzine’s comprehensive Economic Growth Strategy,” said Jerry Zaro, chief of the Governor’s Office of Economic Growth, who attended the event along with Caren S. Franzini, chief executive officer of the state Economic Development Authority. “We applaud inVentiv Health’s choice to expand its operations in New Jersey, particularly during this tough economic period as we emerge from a national recession, and we are pleased that some of our state’s incentive programs were instrumental in the company’s decision to remain in our state.”

In support of inVentiv Health’s decision to try to grow in New Jersey, the company recently finalized a grant under the state’s Business Employment Incentive Program associated with its plans to create 150 new full-time jobs at the location. The company has also been approved for incentives under the state’s Business Relocation and Retention Assistance Grant Program for maintaining over 400 jobs in the state.

“inVentiv has been based in New Jersey for the past decade, and we are very pleased to be maintaining our headquarters in the state,” said Terry Herring, president of inVentiv Health. “The new building will not only support our continued growth, it also will bring more of our capabilities together under one roof, making it easier for us to share resources and deliver integrated solutions for our clients.”

The company currently employs nearly 550 people in New Jersey, including almost 100 temporary workers. It plans to move approximately 50 jobs from Pennsylvania to New Jersey before the end of the year. The new headquarters has enabled inVentiv Health to consolidate operations previously centered in Franklin, Somerville and Newtown, Pa.

The company had considered expanding its Newtown facilities before deciding to secure its future in New Jersey.

inVentiv Health supports over 350 client organizations globally, including all top 20 global pharmaceutical companies as well as emerging and specialty biotech leaders.

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Filed under Gov. Jon Corzine, inVentiv Health, Job creation, New Jersey Newsroom, Tom Hester

As School Year Begins, A Record Number Of New Jersey Children Enrolled In Pre-School

My wife and I’s all time favorite television commericial is the Staples back to school ad. It’s the one where the kids look miserable but the dad is floating around the store, in apparent bliss as crooner Andy Williams sings in the background ” It’s the most wonderful time of the year”.

We love it so much because for a parent, who has had to deal with kids all summer saying that they are bored and have nothing to, back to school time for us really is the most wonderful time of the year.
Back to school time will also be a wonderful time for the tens of thousands of parents who have kids enrolled in pre-school programs through out the state. Thanks to the Corzine administration, a record number of children, 51,100, our now enrolled in the state’s pre-school program.
How important is pre-school to a childs later success in school? A recent study on the effects of pre-school found that children who attended the Abbott pre-school education program outperformed their peers in first and second grades, and children who had two years of pre-school rather than just one had double the advantages.
So, it really is a happy and wonderful time of year for the parents of these kids. Getting them off to an early start on education is a sure way to make sure that they succeed later as they progress through higher levels of schooling.
You can read more about this >>> here from Tom Hester at the newjerseynewsroom.

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Filed under Abbot school districts, Andy Williams, back to school, early childhood development, Gov. Jon Corzine, New Jersey Newsroom, Pre-school, Staples, Tom Hester

Good News For Corzine- Latest Poll Results Show That Race Is Begining To Tighten

There’s some good news this moring for the Corzine campaign, the latest Quinnipiac poll released last night shows that the race between Governor Corzine and his Republican challanger Chris Christie has begun to tighten.

Christie leads Corzine by a 51% to 42% margin. That’s a 9-point lead for Christie, but a three point “improvement” for the governor over the July Quinnipiac polling results. When Independent Chris Daggett is added to the mix, Christie’s lead shrinks to 6% (46%-40%).

The Governor still has some problems to overcome but he seem to be headed in the right direction.

Tom Hester from New Jersey Newsroom has some good commentary and synopsis of the poll:

“Democratic incumbent Gov. Jon Corzine has gained serious ground on Republican challenger Christopher Christie and now trails the former federal prosecutor 46-40 percent in the three-way race for governor, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released Tuesday.

In a poll releases July 14, two days before President Obama appeared before 17,500 people to endorse Corzine at the PNC Arts Center, Christie led the governor 54-20 percent in a three-way race with Daggett garnering 13 percent of likely voters.

The latest poll shows Corzine picked up 20 percent more likely voters in the past four weeks while Christie lost 8 percent and Daggett dropped from 13 percent to 6 percent.

The poll shows likely voters who abandoned Christie and Daggett have switched to Corzine. Potential voters who remain with Daggett, a former Republican, are people who would likely have gone for Christie if the independent was not in the race…..”

Read More >>>Here

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Filed under Chris Christie, Gov. Jon Corzine, New Jersey Newsroom, Quinipiac Poll, Tom Hester

What Does Corzine Need to Do?

With the most recent Monmouth University/Gannett New Jersey Poll finding that Governor Corzine has 51% disapproval rating amonst registered voters I ask the question, What does Governor Corzine need to do change peoples opinion of the job he is doing?

It is becoming evident that the many accomplishments of the Corzine administration are being lost within all of the bad news about the economy and he is not getting a fair shake for those accomplishments by voters. According to the Monmouth poll voters give governor Corzine an overall approval grade of “C-“

According to Tom Hester, who writes for

“Corzine may not be getting the message of what he and his administration feel are his accomplishments as governor, but his campaign aides maintain the accomplishments can be found.

“Governor Corzine has been making the tough choices to reshape and resize state government,” said Elisabeth Smith, a campaign spokeswoman. “He eliminated and consolidated departments, reduced the state workforce by 7,000 employees and increased the retirement age from 55 to 62. While prioritizing education and health care, this year’s budget is $1.8 billion less than the first budget he introduced. In fact, because the Governor made the right choices, he is the only New Jersey governor in 60 years to reduce the size of state government.”

Smith said governor Corzine made government leaner and more efficient, he launched a first-in-the-nation economic recovery program, instituted a new school funding formula and expedited billions of dollars in new school construction. She said Corzine made meaningful reforms to ease the state’s property tax burden, and this year, property taxes rose by the smallest amount in a decade. On Corzine’s watch, Smith said, 80,000 more children have been enrolled in the state’s health insurance program and the governor took a child welfare system that was once rated among the worst in the country, and made it one of the best.

“Protecting New Jersey’s environment has always been – and continues to be – a top priority for Governor Corzine,” Smith said. “With one of the strongest solar programs in the nation and potentially the country’s first offshore wind project in development, New Jersey is a national leader. By embracing new approaches to energy, New Jersey is providing the pathway to both economic prosperity and environmental protection.”

So I ask you, what is the one message or concern that you have for the Governor? What do you think he needs to hear and what would you like him to do?

I plan on sitting down with him briefly one day during the 1st week of August, I will present your ideas to him and ask him to adress as many of them as possible and I will let you know what he had to say.

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Filed under Elisabeth Smith, Gov. Jon Corzine, Monmouth University / Gannett New Jersey poll, New Jersey Newsroom, Tom Hester