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Michael Symons

I'm the Statehouse bureau chief for New Jersey 101.5, covering the governor, Legislature and state politics, and had previously covered the Statehouse for Gannett newspapers for more than 15 years. I'm a lifelong New Jerseyan -- raised in Bergen, living in Hunterdon, Rutgers graduate. I'm co-author of the 2012 biography 'Chris Christie: The Inside Story of His Rise to Power.' I am not the Iron Chef with a similar name though sometimes get tweets meant for him, especially around Thanksgiving. Believe me, you don't want my cooking tips.
Sen. Jennifer Beck speaks at a Statehouse event, joined by other lawmakers, school officials and the NJEA president. (Michael Symons/Townsquare Media NJ)
Sen. Jennifer Beck speaks at a Statehouse event, joined by other lawmakers, school officials and the NJEA president. (Michael Symons/Townsquare Media NJ)
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Republicans Join NJ Teachers Union to Fight ‘Catastrophic’ School Aid Changes

Unusual things can happen at the Statehouse at the height of state budget season – including a news conference and rally featuring a group of Republican lawmakers and the head of the teachers’ union protesting the planned reallocation of some state aid.

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New Jersey Lottery game card
New Jersey Lottery game card (Dan Alexander, Townsquare Media NJ)
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NJ Lawmakers Taking Closer Look at Approving Lottery-to-Pensions Deal

Less than two weeks remain before the date Gov. Chris Christie hopes the Legislature approves a complicated transaction involving the pension funds and lottery.

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NJ Assembly Speaker Vinnie Prieto
NJ Assembly Speaker Vinnie Prieto (David Matthau, Townsquare Media NJ)
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NJ’s Top Democrats Reach Compromise to Reallocate School Funding

Democratic legislative leaders say they'll add $125 million to school aid and reallocate $46 million more. Any change needs Gov. Chris Christie's cooperation.

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The mostly empty Governor's Office, as seen on June 2. (Michael Symons/Townsquare Media NJ)
The mostly empty Governor's Office, as seen on June 2. (Michael Symons/Townsquare Media NJ)
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Lawsuits Seeking to Block Statehouse Renovation Tossed by NJ Judge

Lawmakers sued to block Gov. Chris Christie from proceeding with renovations to the Statehouse. The cases were dismissed because bonds have already been sold.

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CEO and President Linda FlakeSenator Diane AllenSenator Dawn Addiego
Sen. Diane Allen speaks with Gov. Chris Christie, right, and Sen. Dawn Marie Addiego. left, looking on in 2011. (Office of the Governor)
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NJ ‘Equal Pay’ Compromise Faces Last Stand for 2017

Sen. Diane Allen has negotiated an equal-pay compromise with Gov. Chris Christie -- but Democrats aren't on board, so the issue may wait for a new governor.

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