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Michael Symons

Michael Symons is Statehouse bureau chief for New Jersey 101.5. He previously covered the Statehouse for Gannett newspapers for more than 15 years. He's co-author of the biography 'Chris Christie: The Inside Story of His Rise to Power.' Follow him at @MichaelSymons_ on Twitter.
Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto wants to expand paid family leave. (Michael Symons/Townsquare Media NJ)
Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto wants to expand paid family leave. (Michael Symons/Townsquare Media NJ)
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Paid Family Leave Expansion on the Table — But How Far Will NJ Go?

Democratic legislative leaders say more people would take paid family leave if the benefit was bigger. But they lack consensus yet on the path forward.

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ALCU questionnaire
New Jersey Statehouse (Michael Symons/Townsquare Media NJ)
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NJ Lawmakers Striking Out In Bid to Learn Statehouse Project Details

There’s still scarce detail publicly available about a nearly $300 million Statehouse renovation project due to start within weeks, unless a pair of lawsuits challenging the project knock it off course.

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A sign announcing a temporary school zone speed limit in Hopewell Township, Mercer County. (Google Maps)
A sign announcing a temporary school zone speed limit in Hopewell Township, Mercer County. (Google Maps)
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New Lower Speed Limits Near NJ Schools: Safety or Speed Traps?

A bill would allow counties and municipalities to create permanent lower speed limits in school zones, rather than ones that only take effect during certain times when schools are in session.

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Democratic candidates for governor hold their first debate. (Stockton University photo)
Democratic candidates for governor hold their first debate. (Stockton University photo)
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Christie a Popular Target For Candidates Seeking to Replace Him — Even Republicans

Gov. Chris Christie came in for some criticism at Tuesday’s gubernatorial debates – and not just when Democrats were jawing.

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Judge Glenn Grant, acting administrative director for the New Jersey courts, speaks to the Senate budget committee. (Michael Symons/Townsquare Media NJ)
Judge Glenn Grant, acting administrative director for the New Jersey courts, speaks to the Senate budget committee. (Michael Symons/Townsquare Media NJ)
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‘Make a Mistake With This, Somebody Dies’ — NJ to Modify Bail Reform This Month

New Jersey’s bail reforms are likely to be modified by month’s end, to increase the likelihood defendants with a history of weapons offenses are detained until trial.

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Democratic gubernatorial candidate Phil Murphy speaks at the Trenton train station. (Michael Symons/Townsquare Media NJ)
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Phil Murphy speaks at the Trenton train station. (Michael Symons/Townsquare Media NJ)
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Phil Murphy Pledges More NJ Transit Aid, Potentially From New Taxes

Phil Murphy pledges to increase state support for New Jersey Transit operations if elected governor and says that could potentially require a tax hike.

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(Michael Symons/Townsquare Media NJ)
(Michael Symons/Townsquare Media NJ)
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NJ’s $300M Statehouse Renovation May Actually Cost Taxpayers $500M

The Statehouse renovation project, which will cost approximately $500 million to repay once interest costs are taken into account, will apparently not require direct approval by the Legislature or voters.

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