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1 US NJ: N.J. Lawmakers Unveil Legislation Legalizing MarijuanaWed, 21 Nov 2018
Source:Philadelphia Inquirer, The (PA)          Area:New Jersey Lines:30 Added:11/21/2018

TRENTON -- New Jersey lawmakers have unveiled their latest proposal to legalize recreational marijuana use for people 21 and over. A joint Democrat-led Assembly and Senate committee is expected to discuss the package Monday.

One bill provides for legalizing an ounce of marijuana for adults 21 and older, setting up a five-person cannabis commission, and taxing the sale of the substance at 12 percent.

That rate includes the 6.625 percent sales tax. The draft also permits local governments to apply up to a 2 percent tax on cannabis. An earlier measure called for gradually increasing tax rates.

The legislation also calls for expediting expungements for people with marijuana-related criminal backgrounds.

Gov. Murphy supports marijuana legalization. His office did not comment on the new legislation Wednesday.


2 US NJ: N.J. To Resume Minor Marijuana Prosecutions, But AG Asks ForWed, 29 Aug 2018
Source:Philadelphia Inquirer, The (PA) Author:Wood, Sam Area:New Jersey Lines:73 Added:08/29/2018

Prosecutors in New Jersey cannot unilaterally decriminalize marijuana possession in their jurisdictions, the state attorney general announced Wednesday, but they are being encouraged to use their discretion with people charged with low-level cannabis crimes.

State Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal issued a guidance memo to the Garden State's prosecutors, asking them to carefully consider the repercussions of a marijuana conviction on the lives of people charged with simple possession.

He asked prosecutors to weigh the "collateral consequences" a conviction might have on a defendant's ability to find work, remain in school, and receive government loans, housing, and licensing. Grewal also requested prosecutors to take into account age, circumstances of arrest, immigration consequences, and adverse familial consequences.

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3 US NJ: Oped: Pressing Pause On Pot ConvictionsSun, 29 Jul 2018
Source:New York Times (NY) Author:Fulop, Steven M. Area:New Jersey Lines:111 Added:07/29/2018

JERSEY CITY - Every city in America knows that it's a bad idea to prosecute low-level, nonviolent marijuana offenses. It wastes scarce municipal resources and does nothing to enhance public safety. What's more, even though whites and blacks use marijuana at similar rates, blacks are more harshly punished for it.

That's why, on July 19, marijuana offenses were effectively decriminalized in Jersey City, New Jersey's second most populous city.

Prosecutors treated every marijuana case that day as a violation instead of a misdemeanor, unless driving under the influence was involved. We told our prosecutors to ask for no more than a $50 fine, or just five hours of community service if the defendant couldn't pay that fee. Instances like the absence of any public nuisance or a low likelihood of re-offense would warrant outright dismissal. We also stressed the importance of diverting people with an obvious drug addiction toward social services.

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4 US NJ: Editorial: Like Jersey City, Murphy's AG Takes The High GroundWed, 25 Jul 2018
Source:Bridgeton News (NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:81 Added:07/25/2018

Jersey City's mayor is planting himself at the forefront of a national movement to stop destroying people's lives for having a little marijuana.

Steven Fulop is firmly on the right side of this issue, and Gov. Phil Murphy's attorney general, Gurbir Grewal, is not fighting him on it -- once again demonstrating that he is not just concerned with law and order, but justice.

Grewal has been receptive to reform efforts in general, creating a statewide team to investigate wrongful convictions, for instance, after a bungled murder case in Passaic County.

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5 US NJ: Report: New Jersey Puts Temporary Hold On Marijuana CasesTue, 24 Jul 2018
Source:Morning Call (Allentown, PA) Author:Shipkowski, Bruce Area:New Jersey Lines:60 Added:07/24/2018

New Jersey's attorney general has announced an immediate adjournment of all marijuana cases in municipal courts statewide until at least September.

The decision was included in a letter state Attorney General Gurbir Grewal sent Tuesday to municipal prosecutors in the state. It asked them to seek an adjournment until September 4 -- or later -- of any matter "involving a marijuana-related offense pending in municipal court," a move that will allow the attorney general's office time to develop "appropriate guidance" for prosecutors.

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6 US NJ: Marijuana Bills Increasingly Focus On Social JusticeThu, 19 Jul 2018
Source:Philadelphia Inquirer, The (PA) Author:Quinton, Sophie Area:New Jersey Lines:213 Added:07/19/2018

Chris Alexander, policy coordinator for the Drug Policy Alliance, advocates for marijuana legislation at the state Capitol in Albany, New York. Supporters say the bill would promote social justice and equity.

State lawmakers and advocates pushing to legalize marijuana this year aren't just touting legalization as a way to raise tax revenue and regulate an underground pot market. They're also talking about fixing a broken criminal justice system and reinvesting in poor and minority communities that have been battered by decades of the government's war on drugs.

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7 US NJ: New Jersey, Feeling Marijuana's Pull, Frets Over LegalizationTue, 17 Jul 2018
Source:New York Times (NY) Author:Corsiniti, Nick Area:New Jersey Lines:168 Added:07/17/2018

SECAUCUS, N.J. - Tucked inside a nondescript commercial warehouse here sits a sophisticated marijuana-growing operation. A custom filtration system feeds a proprietary cocktail of nutrients into a hydroponic, two-level farming system. Two pallets of crops are harvested every day, and the 15,000 square feet will eventually yield two tons of marijuana per year.

And it's all legal.

Opened just a few weeks ago, Harmony Dispensary is the latest site in New Jersey to provide marijuana for medical use, a program that has expanded greatly since Gov. Philip D. Murphy, a Democrat, was sworn in. More than 10,000 patients have enrolled since he took office in January, bringing the total to about 25,000. And on Monday, Mr. Murphy's office announced it was seeking up to six new applicants for medicinal marijuana dispensaries.

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8 US NJ: Gov. Murphy Greatly Expands New Jersey's Medical MarijuanaTue, 27 Mar 2018
Source:Philadelphia Daily News (PA) Author:Hefler, Jan Area:New Jersey Lines:106 Added:03/31/2018

Gov. Murphy greatly expanded New Jersey's medical marijuana program Tuesday, opening the door to tens of thousands of new patients and allowing the five dispensaries spread across the state to add satellite retail centers and cultivation facilities.

The governor added to the list of ailments that qualify for a cannabis prescription. He also cleared the way for any doctor in the state to prescribe cannabis, ending a system in which only those physicians who registered -- and thus, joined a publicly available list of providers - -- could do so. He said some doctors had been reluctant to participate in the program because they viewed joining the list as a stigma.

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9 US NJ: Doctors -- Not Politicians -- Should Decide Who Gets MedicalThu, 22 Mar 2018
Source:Bridgeton News (NJ) Author:Livio, Susan K. Area:New Jersey Lines:87 Added:03/22/2018

Doctors would decide which patients should use marijuana as medicine instead of being limited by a narrow list of eligible diseases set by law, under a sweeping medical marijuana overhaul approved by a state Assembly panel Thursday.

The measure that cleared the Assembly Health Committee would also allow registered patients to buy up to four ounces of cannabis, or twice as much as they are permitted to obtain now.

The dispensaries and cultivators would be divided evenly in the northern, central and southern regions of the state, including the six who are already licensed to grow and sell.

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10 US NJ: New Jersey Lawmakers Weigh Legalizing MarijuanaMon, 05 Mar 2018
Source:Philadelphia Daily News (PA) Author:Hefler, Jan Area:New Jersey Lines:97 Added:03/10/2018

TRENTON -- The first New Jersey legislative hearing on the legalization of marijuana held since Gov. Murphy took office -- after he promised his support -- unfolded Monday before more than 100 people.

More than a dozen experts traveled from as far as Colorado and Massachusetts to office advice on legalization, a topic gaining traction after Murphy, a Democrat, replaced Gov. Chris Christie, a Republican adamantly opposed to it, in January.

Several lawmakers are working on legalization bills, but none has come up for a vote and some legislators say they are trying to get a consensus.

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11 US NJ: Judge: Insurance Company Must Pay For Medical Marijuana ForTue, 06 Feb 2018
Source:Philadelphia Daily News (PA) Author:Hefler, Jan Area:New Jersey Lines:111 Added:02/07/2018

In what could be a precedent-setting decision, a New Jersey administrative law judge has ordered an insurance company to pay for medical marijuana for an injured worker who suffers from lingering neuropathic pain in his left hand after an accident while using a power saw at an 84 Lumber outlet in 2008.

Judge Ingrid L. French took testimony from the worker, a 39-year-old Egg Harbor Township man, and a Cherry Hill psychiatrist/neurologist who said the marijuana treatment was appropriate because it would allow the patient to reduce his prescription opiate use and lower the risk of serious side effects.

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12US NJ: NJ Marijuana Legalization: When Will Weed Be Legal?Fri, 08 Dec 2017
Source:Asbury Park Press (NJ) Author:Davis, Mike Area:New Jersey Lines:Excerpt Added:12/08/2017

The grass is looking greener for New Jersey marijuana users.

The idea of legal pot was once a pipe dream for those who so indulged. Not anymore. Gov.-elect Phil Murphy has pledged to sign legislation legalizing pot within 100 days of his Jan. 16 inauguration, prompting speculation on what that hazy world would look like.

Among the particulars that have been largely agreed upon: New Jerseyans would be permitted to possess up to 1 ounce of marijuana for personal use, and previous convictions for such possession would be eligible for expungement.

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13 US NJ: Legislation Calls For 'drugged Drivers' Test If MarijuanaFri, 01 Dec 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ) Author:Westhoven, William Area:New Jersey Lines:105 Added:12/01/2017

Two Republicans representing Morris County in Trenton want to 'put breaks' on legalization of marijuana by governor-elect.

Two Republicans representing Morris County in Trenton are pushing back against the promise by Governor-elect Phil Murphy to sign a bill legalizing marijuana in the first 100 days of his administration.

Murphy and the Democratic majorities in the Senate and Assembly have said they want marijuana legalized in early 2018, which could generate up to $300 million in annual taxes to the state.

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14US NJ: Legal Marijuana Could Be Coming Soon To New JerseyFri, 24 Nov 2017
Source:Asbury Park Press (NJ) Author:Nash, James Area:New Jersey Lines:Excerpt Added:11/28/2017

The Garden State could soon become a bit more green.

Proponents of legalized marijuana in New Jersey are lining up in the aftermath of Phil Murphy's election as governor, anticipating no-questions-asked pot sales to adults by late next year with an ally in the governor's office.

Murphy has named the head of a marijuana trade group as his chief of staff, and a new association for marijuana retailers has formed. The governor-elect vowed during his campaign to legalize the drug, and the growing industry is counting on him to quickly make good on the pledge.

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15 US NJ: Editorial: Opioid Crisis Outlook Grows More BleakTue, 21 Nov 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:71 Added:11/23/2017

In this divided nation, we should be able to at least find common cause in the fight to stop and treat opioid addiction, a scourge that knows no single identity, and that does not respect geographic boundaries or common socio-economic factors. This is a fight we must all take up, arm in arm, because in one way or another it affects all Americans.

Indeed, the more we know about this menace to our national health, the worse it seems. According to a new analysis released by the Trump White House, the opioid addiction crisis may already be much worse than previously thought. According to the White House Council of Economic Advisers, the true cost of the crisis, as of 2015, stands at $504 billion, a figure more than six times the most recent estimate.

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16 US NJ: Paterson: Inside Needle Exchange, Clients Defend The ProgramFri, 22 Sep 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ) Author:Rumley, Ed Area:New Jersey Lines:129 Added:09/26/2017

PATERSON -- About a dozen men and women sat on hard plastic chairs early Wednesday morning inside a conference room at the Well of Hope Drop-In Center on Broadway, where a flat screen television broadcast sports highlights on ESPN.

Some came for the free coffee. A sign said the limit was one cup per hour. Others were there to use the showers and toilet facilities. A 57-year-old man who would only give his name as "Julius" was waiting to see a nurse about a blister on his foot.

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17 US NJ: Energy-Drink Consumption May Lead To Cocaine Use, Study SaysFri, 11 Aug 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:71 Added:08/11/2017

Energy drinks could be a gateway to cocaine use, according to a new study.

Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Public Health found that young adults who said they'd consumed energy drinks yearly between ages 21 and 24 were at greater risk for subsequently doing cocaine, using prescription stimulants for non-medical uses and problem drinking.

The 1,099 study participants were recruited as 18-year-old college students.

Those who didn't consume energy drinks as they got older were less likely to develop substance-abuse problems.

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18 US NJ: Editorial: Opioid Addiction Is A National EmergencyWed, 09 Aug 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:83 Added:08/09/2017

On Tuesday, President Donald Trump met with Cabinet members and senior staff at his golf club in Bedminster to discuss the opioid crisis. Missing at the meeting was Gov. Chris Christie, the chairman of the president's commission charged with studying the national rise of heroin and opioid addiction. Christie is on vacation. While the governor missed the meeting, the president is missing the message Christie has been sending for several years: treatment over incarceration will save lives.

Long before his approval rating tanked at 15 percent, Christie used his then sizable political capital to focus on treatment and rehabilitation. He did it when he pushed for drug courts. He did it when he eloquently spoke of a law student friend who died because of addiction. And during his presidential bid, Christie resonated most effectively with voters when talking about drug addiction.

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19 US NJ: Editorial: Adding One More Needed Medical Marijuana DispensaryTue, 01 Aug 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:68 Added:08/05/2017

When it comes to the state's medical marijuana law, progress has come in increments rather than great strides. New Jersey's Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act, state law since 2010, has been implemented ever so slowly under Gov. Chris Christie, who has never hidden his disdain for the law.

Yet those disappointed by the snail's pace of the law, and the establishment of new medical marijuana centers, have new reason to take heart.

As Staff Writer Lindy Washburn reported, North Jersey will soon be welcoming the state's largest dispensary of medical marijuana yet -- at a 10,000-square-foot facility on Meadowlands Parkway in Secaucus. Once it opens, the dispensary plans to serve up to 4,000 patients a month with a variety of strains of cannabis. The Christie administration has issued a permit to grow medical marijuana to Harmony Foundation and will consider issuing a permit to dispense marijuana after the crop is tested later this year.

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20 US NJ: Sen. Booker Introduces Bill To Legalize MarijuanaTue, 01 Aug 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ) Author:Pugliese, Nicholas Area:New Jersey Lines:114 Added:08/01/2017

U.S. Sen. Cory Booker introduced a bill Tuesday to make marijuana legal at the federal level, marking the first time the New Jersey Democrat has come out in favor of full legalization and further stoking tensions with a Trump administration that has sought to roll back the clock on federal drug policy.

The Marijuana Justice Act, as Booker is calling his bill, would also allow people serving time for marijuana-related offenses to be resentenced and automatically expunge federal marijuana use and possession crimes. States whose marijuana laws disproportionately affect minorities or poor people would lose federal funding for law enforcement and prison construction, among other funds.

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21 US NJ: 4 Things To Know About The Legalization Of Marijuana In NJMon, 31 Jul 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ) Author:Smith, Morgan Area:New Jersey Lines:44 Added:07/31/2017

The call to legalize marijuana in New Jersey has been loud and clear, lately. Legalization rallies have occurred in groups in Trenton, and front-runners from both parties of the gubernational primary elections have been vocal in their support of legalization. What is there to know about the legalization of marijuana in New Jersey?

The state's medical marijuana program added 5,000 participants last year, and total enrollment now exceeds 10,000, according to the state's Health Department. There are five state-licensed dispensaries, also known as alternative treatment centers, and Secaucus just got approval to open its own dispensary.

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22 US NJ: LTE: Legalizing Marijuana Is 'Beyond Stupid'Mon, 31 Jul 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ) Author:Lanzalotto, Lisa Area:New Jersey Lines:48 Added:07/31/2017

Regarding "Marijuana should be legalized" (Your Views, June 6):

The points the writer raises regarding legalizing cannabis are ignorant and obviously not factual. They are clearly just his uneducated opinion. Just how will legalization reduce street drug markets? Issues of increased tax revenue, economic boost to retail and job creation, and not contributing to homelessness and violence are irrelevant.

Do you want to be driving your car at 70 miles an hour on the Turnpike with your kid in the back, next to someone who is high because he just finished smoking a recreational joint?

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23 US NJ: PUB LTE: Let's Recognize The Benefits Of CannabisMon, 31 Jul 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ) Author:Sutton, Roy Area:New Jersey Lines:30 Added:07/31/2017

Regarding "Opioid crisis continues to grow" (Editorial, July 22):

Most of the efforts on overdosing of opioids in Governor Christie's programs have to do with treating the addict. We need more to be done to prevent the addiction from happening in the first place. And at the same time, we should not shame people who want to use soft drugs.

When we have a legal drug, alcohol, which causes far more harm than cannabis does, there is something wrong. We need to acknowledge that some people have a need to benefit from cannabis, and we gain nothing by censuring them. The "stigma" hasn't really worked very well. People have found benefit from this plant. We would be better off accepting this rather than putting them through arrests and worse.

Roy Sutton

Rahway, July 25


24 US NJ: Editorial: Opioid Crisis Continues To GrowFri, 21 Jul 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:74 Added:07/25/2017

The national opioid crisis is spreading. Despite increased awareness of the dangers of abusing prescription drugs, the numbers of fatalities and overdoses continue to rise. That is too true in Bergen County.

As Staff Writer Steve Janoski reports, despite the efforts of Bergen County Prosecutor Gurbir S. Grewal, the county appears on track to surpass last year's totals of 320 overdoses; 259 of which were opioid related. Ninety-eight people died. That's an 11 percent increase in overdoses from 2015 and a 12.6 percent increase in fatalities.

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25US NJ: Anti-Drug Activist To Seek Pardon From Christie In Gun CaseFri, 07 Jul 2017
Source:San Antonio Express-News (TX)          Area:New Jersey Lines:Excerpt Added:07/11/2017

JERSEY CITY, N.J. (AP) - A Pennsylvania man charged with trying to drive through the Holland Tunnel with a cache of weapons on his way to rescue a teenager from a drug den will ask New Jersey's governor for a pardon after a judge denied his request to enter a pretrial intervention program.

Attorney James Lisa told a judge Thursday that he will seek a pardon after the judge denied allowing John Cramsey, of East Greenville, to enter the program after he earlier rejected a plea.

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26 US NJ: Editorial: State Could Ease Their PainMon, 19 Jun 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:68 Added:06/19/2017

Medical patients in severe pain seek comfort in a variety of ways. Some remedies, they find, work better than others. Some medications, they find, are less addictive than others. These are factors that must be weighed as New Jersey considers the pros and cons of whether to expand its list of "debilitating medical conditions" for those who wish to participate in the state's medical marijuana program.

More than 12,500 residents have been registered under the program since it was legalized in 2010, yet many more patients and caregivers want to participate and say the state's existing rules are too restrictive. We agree.

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27 US NJ: Legislators Begin Marijuana Legalization Effort As They LookMon, 19 Jun 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ) Author:Racioppi, Dustin Area:New Jersey Lines:100 Added:06/19/2017

Looking beyond Gov. Chris Christie and seeing a more socially liberal future, Democratic lawmakers opened their campaign to legalize marijuana in New Jersey with a lengthy legislative hearing Monday.

Although no vote was planned on the bill that was introduced last month, the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing formally set in motion a campaign to make New Jersey among the first states in the Northeast to legalize marijuana. Voters in eight other states and Washington, D.C., have approved marijuana legalization, but New Jersey would be the first to do so through legislation.

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28US NJ: Editorial: Time To Lighten Up On MarijuanaFri, 16 Jun 2017
Source:Asbury Park Press (NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:Excerpt Added:06/16/2017

Anyone looking to buttress the argument for decriminalizing marijuana in New Jersey should take a close look at a new American Civil Liberties Union report regarding the War on Pot. To sum up: It's a needless fight being waged badly.

Pot arrests have been rising steadily under Gov. Chris Christie, which shouldn't be a surprise. Christie continues to regard marijuana as a gateway drug to harder substances, and dragged his feet on implementing New Jersey's medicinal marijuana law. Christie's compassion and enlightenment regarding drug addiction and how best to combat it seems to stop at opioids.

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29US NJ: Effort To Legalize Marijuana Touches On The Question Of RaceThu, 15 Jun 2017
Source:Asbury Park Press (NJ) Author:Serrano, Ken Area:New Jersey Lines:Excerpt Added:06/15/2017

The legalization of small amounts of marijuana for people 21 and over came before the Senate Judiciary Committee Monday as the committee considers abill introduced by Sen. Nicolas Scutari, D-Union.

According to Scutari's office, no vote was taken. (To listen to the hearing, click here.)

In the bill, Scutari mentions the cost to New Jersey for enforcement. Marijuana possession arrests made up three out of every five drug arrests in New Jersey in 2012. The state shells out about $127 million per year on marijuana possession enforcement efforts.

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30 US NJ: West Milford Police Revive Overdose VictimTue, 24 Jan 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:35 Added:01/26/2017

West Milford police revived a 31-year-old Hewitt woman suffering from a heroin overdose on Jan. 21.

[photo] A West Milford police car sits idle behind town hall on Dec. 31, 2016.(Photo: Joe Sarno/

WEST MILFORD -- Local police revived a 31-year-old Hewitt woman suffering from an apparent heroin overdose on Saturday afternoon.

West Milford police officers administered the opioid-blocking medication naloxone to the resident after finding her unresponsive at approximately 2:12 p.m. on Jan. 21, according a Jan. 24 press release from the Passaic County Prosecutor's Office.

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31US NJ: Large Opioid Distributor Must Pay $150m Over SuspiciousWed, 18 Jan 2017
Source:Asbury Park Press (NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:Excerpt Added:01/19/2017

McKesson Corporation agreed to pay $150 million to settle allegations from federal authorities that the company failed to monitor and report suspicious sales of oxycodone and hydrocodone.

The Washington Post reported on the settlement in December, gleaned from a publicly disclosed Form 8-K filed by McKesson on April 30, 2015.

Tuesday was the first mention of the settlement by federal law enforcement authorities.

The settlement stemmed from an earlier case.

In 2008, McKesson agreed to pay $13.25 million after the government alleged it failed to create and maintain a system to detect and report suspicious orders of increasing amounts of oxycodone and hydrocodone pills to independent and small chain pharmacies.

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32 US NJ: Wayne Police: Woman's Heroin Stamped 'Suicide Squad'Wed, 18 Jan 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:37 Added:01/18/2017

[Name redacted] of Denville, was charged by Wayne police with possession of heroin.(Photo: Courtesy of Wayne Police)

[Name redacted], 26, of Denville was arrested and charged with possession of 39 bags of heroin, among other charges, on Jan. 4.

According to police records, Officer Tomasz Cydzik observed a 2000 Honda Civic parked in the CVS parking lot on Hamburg Turnpike with her head down "as if unconscious" around 9:40 p.m. When the officer approached, [name redacted] opened her eyes and police observed an uncapped syringe inside the vehicle, according to police reports. After further investigation, five Suboxone under-the-tongue films, one Clonazepam pill, a sandwich-sized plastic bag containing suspected marijuana, two additional hypodermic needles, multiple open glassine bags of suspected heroin, 39 additional bags of heroin stamped "suicide squad" and one small zip lock bag containing suspected cocaine, police records show.

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33US NJ: Advocates, Critics React To Christie's Sweeping Drug PlanWed, 18 Jan 2017
Source:Asbury Park Press (NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:Excerpt Added:01/18/2017

Anti-drug advocates hailed Gov. Chris Christie's pledge Tuesday to make New Jersey's addiction crisis a top job in the final year of his term in office, but there were worries about funding and follow through.

Using soaring rhetoric, heartfelt personal stories of loss and unmistakable zeal, the governor used his State of the State address to outline a series of new initiatives to battle the opioid epidemic that has devastated New Jersey.

Paul Ressler, who lost his son Corey to a heroin overdose and now runs an organization that informs the public about the use of the opioid overdose antidote naloxone, praised the goal of getting more teenagers into treatment. Christie promised to change state regulations that exclude 18 and 19 year olds from treatment facilities for children.

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34 US NJ: Christie Signs Executive Order Declaring Opioid Addiction ATue, 17 Jan 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:100 Added:01/18/2017

[photo] Gov. Chris Christie led a roundtable discussion at Integrity House in Newark, following the signing of an executive order declaring opoid addiction a public health crisis. At right, Integrity House President Robert Budsock. At left is Vanessa, an Integrity House program graduate.(Photo: Dale Mincey / NorthJersey)

NEWARK -- In front of a small group of recovering addicts, Gov. Chris Christie signed an executive order on Tuesday declaring the opioid addiction problem in New Jersey a public health crisis.

The event, which was held at Integrity House -- an substance abuse recovery home on South Street in Newark -- took place less than an hour after Lt. Gov. Kim Guagdano announced her candidacy to succeed him as governor.

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35 US NJ: Stile: Christie's New War On Drugs A Bid For RedemptionTue, 17 Jan 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:130 Added:01/18/2017

[photo] Governor Christie's attorney asked for the dismissal of a probable cause finding on an official misconduct complaint over the George Washington Bridge lane closures.(Photo: Chris Pedota/NorthJersey)

Chris Christie plunged himself into the center of a crisis on Tuesday. It's a place where he's comfortable and often compelling.

It's also a place where he thrives.

"Our friends are dying. Our neighbors are dying. Our co-workers are dying. Our children are dying. Every day. In numbers we can no longer ignore,'' Christie said in his seventh State of the State speech, which was part sermon, part call to arms for the Legislature to confront the state's drug addiction crisis that "is ripping the very fabric of this state."

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36 US NJ: Christie Bracing For Fight On Drug Insurance ChangesTue, 17 Jan 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:127 Added:01/18/2017

[photo] Governor Chris Christie delivers his State of the State address on Tuesday.(Photo: Chris Pedota/NorthJersey)

As he composed a lengthy State of the State speech dedicated to battling New Jersey's heroin and opiate crisis, Governor Christie said he was intent on including one component that will not only challenge lawmakers in Trenton, but drastically alter the health care industry around the state.

He insisted on a new law mandating that no resident with health insurance could be denied coverage for the first six months of inpatient or outpatient treatment, an unprecedented length of time, experts say. He told his administration two months ago to figure out how such a major change could be done.

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37 US NJ: LTE: Opioid Epidemic Tough To UnderstandThu, 12 Jan 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ) Author:Tarnow, Eugen Area:New Jersey Lines:39 Added:01/15/2017

The opioid epidemic may have cost as many lives as have been recently lost in Syria. Yet understanding it is difficult.

I saw an Associated Press article that showed that pharmaceutical companies are focusing on lobbying state legislatures. There is a strong relationship between Medicare prescriptions and state income. The poorer the state, the more opioid prescriptions, presumably showing that legislators are particularly vulnerable to Big Pharma if their constituents don't have much money. There is a correlation also with a state's Republican leadership suggesting that less regulation leads to more Medicare opioid prescriptions.

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38US NJ: Drug Treatment For AllThu, 12 Jan 2017
Source:Asbury Park Press (NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:Excerpt Added:01/12/2017

The program launched by the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office provides rehabilitation to those without insurance.

Heroin and fentanyl deaths are rising in Ocean County.(Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Anyone suffering from addiction can now drop into two police departments in Ocean County and get treatment, whether they have insurance or not, officials announced Monday morning.

The program also allows addicts to turn in their drugs without fear of being prosecuted, Al Della Fave, the spokesman for the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office said. The office is spearheading the program known as the Heroin Addiction Response Program.

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39US NJ: Medical Marijuana Home Delivery Coming To WestchesterWed, 11 Jan 2017
Source:Rochester Democrat and Chronicle (NY)          Area:New Jersey Lines:Excerpt Added:01/12/2017

[photo] A medical marijuana dispensary is proposed for 1154 N. Main St. in Algonquin.

Algonquin officials are considering a medical marijuana company's proposal to open a dispensary in a medical office complex.

ILDISP III LLC, represented by Ross Morreale, is seeking a special-use permit for a free-standing building at 1154 N. Main St., out of which the company would sell marijuana to patients with a prescription.

An attached garage would also be added onto the building, which formerly housed an MRI center, as a secure area for deliveries and waste removal, according to the proposal.

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40 US NJ: Former Heroin Addict Inspires Christie's Reform EffortsWed, 11 Jan 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:100 Added:01/11/2017

Six months ago, AJ Solomon visited Gov. Chris Christie at the State House to apologize for using heroin while a member of the governor's advance team.

[photo] Governor Chris Christie told the story of AJ Solomon, a recovering heroin addict, to illustrate his focus on combating drug addiction in New Jersey. Here, the Governor hugs Solomon as he exits after the address.(Photo: Chris Pedota/

Six months ago, AJ Solomon visited Gov. Chris Christie at the State House to apologize for what he felt was the ultimate betrayal -- using heroin while a member of the governor's advance team in 2012 and 2013.

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41 US NJ: Christie Shines Light On N.J. Fight Against AddictionWed, 11 Jan 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ) Author:Racioppi, Dustin Area:New Jersey Lines:109 Added:01/11/2017

Christie this week reaffirmed his public commitment to making N.J. a national leader in fighting drug addiction.


Governor Christie speaks about drug addiction at a Walgreens in East Brunswick on Dec. 22, 2016.(Photo: Nicholas Pugliese/STATE HOUSE BUREAU)

Gov. Chris Christie on Thursday visited a Walgreens in East Brunswick to highlight initiatives the company is undertaking to promote the safe disposal of unused prescriptions drugs and expand access to a medicine that can reverse an opioid overdose.

His final public appearance before Christmas came on the heels of a related event Wednesday evening where Christie and former Gov. Jim McGreevey led a candlelight vigil on the State House steps in memory of people who have died from or are struggling with addiction.

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42 US NJ: N.J. Gets $1.3m Grant To Fight Heroin Addiction AndWed, 11 Jan 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:53 Added:01/11/2017

New Jersey will receive a $1.3 million grant to target the heroin trade and illegal prescription drug activity as law enforcement and legislators team up to lower rates of addiction and overdoses, Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr. announced Thursday.

[photo] A grant from the U.S. Justice Department would target the heroin trade and misuse of prescription drugs.(Photo: RECORD FILE PHOTO)

New Jersey will receive a $1.3 million grant to target the heroin trade and illegal prescription drug activity as law enforcement and legislators team up to lower rates of addiction and overdoses, Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr. announced Thursday.

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43 US NJ: Christie Hopes More Addicts Will Get Treatment Under TrumpWed, 11 Jan 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:70 Added:01/11/2017

[photo] Governor Chris Christie holds a baby boy facing perinatal addiction while the boy's grandmother looks on while he was touring the Jersey Shore Medical Center's Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) in Neptune, N.J. on Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2016. The baby boy is 49 days old and suffers from withdrawal symptoms transferred from his mother who had addiction issues. (Photo: Tim Larsen/Governor's office)

With changes to health care among the top priorities for President-elect Donald Trump when he takes office next month, New Jersey is likely to gain greater flexibility in Medicaid and possibly help drug users get access to treatment, Gov. Chris Christie said Wednesday.

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44 US NJ: Heroin Busts Come With An Offer Of Detox To Help Break CycleWed, 11 Jan 2017
Source:Herald News (West Paterson, NJ) Author:Pries, Allison Area:New Jersey Lines:266 Added:01/11/2017

One is a former nurse. Another used to be in law enforcement. There were a recruiter and a graphic designer.

Bergen County Prosecutor Gurbir Grewal and Bergen County Sheriff Michael Saudino at the press conference on Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016.

They were among 40 people arrested this week in an investigation led by the Bergen County Prosecutor's Office to combat the area's "staggering" heroin epidemic.

This time, after arresting the alleged users for drug possession, detectives offered them help -- the chance to enter a five-day detox program run by Bergen County Regional Medical Center. Twelve people accepted.

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45US NJ: At The Shore, A New Path For Addicts Under ArrestMon, 09 Jan 2017
Source:Asbury Park Press (NJ)          Area:New Jersey Lines:Excerpt Added:01/09/2017

Sitting in a jail cell and preparing to spend as many as five years in state prison for two heroin possession charges, Matt Lopreiato found himself at a grim crossroads.

"I destroyed my family inside and out. I felt like my life was over. No family, no friends," the 27-year-old Toms River man said. "I felt like I was alone and would be better off dead to be completely honest with you."

The heroin addict went cold turkey and spent 43 days in Ocean County Jail. Then an offer arrived: go through addiction treatment, succeed and go free.

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