MAYOR BLOOMBERG AND COCA COLA ENTERPRISES ROLL OUT THE COMPANY’S FIRST-EVER HYBRID DELIVERY TRUCKS IN THE SOUTH BRONX

29 11 2007

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New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today joined Coca-Cola Enterprises (CCE) executives to announce that the company is undertaking energy saving measures here in New York, including introducing the first five hybrid-electric delivery trucks, which will operate out of the company’s distribution center in the Bronx. Coca-Cola Enterprises is responsible for the distribution of Coca-Cola products in North America and Europe. The Bronx sales center has 90 trucks servicing 8700 customers in Manhattan and the Bronx, delivering more than 8 million cases of beverages annually. The hybrid-electric trucks use 32% less fuel than standard trucks and use technology to eliminate emissions when they idle or sit in traffic.

“Sustainable business practices will save businesses and government money in the long run. That’s why we’re converting our taxi fleet to hybrids. It’s why major rental companies like Hertz are converting their fleets, and it’s why a world leader in product distribution like Coca-Cola has made this commitment,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “Although clearly a major international brand, there are important local implications resulting from this decision. Coca-Cola Enterprises runs trucks though our five boroughs on their distribution routes, and by introducing these hybrid-electric trucks, they are contributing to better air quality in the communities they serve locally – especially their home in the South Bronx.” NyC.gov

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Brooklyn N.Y. Hatzolah Ambulance Involved In A Motor Vehicle Crash

29 11 2007

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Brooklyn N.Y. A Hatzolah ambulance while responding to a Cardiac Arrest was just involved in a Motor Vehicle Crash in the Boro Park section of Brooklyn,on 14th Avenue . There are injuries reported at this time. Multiple Hatzolah  Ambulances and multiple units  are responding to the scene at this time .





Gas in N.J. no longer nation’s cheapest

29 11 2007

Prices at the pump crept up several cents in the past week, meaning gasoline in New Jersey now is the second cheapest in the nation, according to a report by the AAA Fuel Gauge.

At an average of $2.95 per gallon for regular, up three cents from one week ago, gas in the Garden State now is the nation’s second least-costly behind Missouri, where a gallon sells for $2.90.

The average price in the Trenton area is $2.97. NJ.COM

The national average price Wednesday morning stood at $3.10, according to the AAA survey





Immigrants reach 21 percent of NJ population

29 11 2007

A massive new wave of immigrants that began in the 1980s has pushed New Jersey’s population to 21.6 percent foreign born, according to a study released Thursday.

With immigrants arriving at a faster clip and growing numbers of non-immigrant residents moving to other states, the total is rapidly approaching the all-time high of 26 percent, according to the study by the Center for Immigration Studies in Washington D.C. The 26 percent figure was reached in 1910, when thousands of people arrived daily at Ellis Island.

The report found that the last seven years have been the highest period of immigration in history, both in New Jersey and nationally, with 1.5 million legal and illegal immigrants arriving in the country each year.

The Center for Immigration Studies is a think tank that lobbies for lower immigration levels. While other demographers did not agree with the report’s more ominous tones, there was no quibbling with the overall numbers.

“No nation has ever attempted to incorporate nearly 38 million newcomers into its society,” the report’s conclusion states, referring to the total number of foreign-born people living in the US. “Whatever one thinks of contemporary immigration, it is critically important to understand that its effect on America represents a choice” by the government to allow such high levels of immigration.

While New Jersey saw slower immigration during the 1990s than several other states, including New York, the growth has quickened, with 589,000 new immigrants arriving since 2000. Only Texas and California added more immigrants over that time period.

The children of immigrants now comprise 31 percent of all school age children in New Jersey. The study puts the number of illegal immigrants living in the state at 429,000. by Brian Donohue/The Star-Ledger NJ.COM





Truck fire closes parts of Route 3 in Clifton

28 11 2007

CLIFTON — A Wednesday afternoon truck fire on Route 3 snarled eastbound traffic for more than three miles, causing delays that stretched onto Route 46 and into Little Falls.

At about 1:30 p.m., a plumber driving onto the highway from the Bloomfield Avenue entrance heard an explosion from the back of his truck. He pulled over on the ramp’s shoulder, saw smoke pouring out the back and thought about the chemicals onboard. NorthJersey.com





Bush Calls Abbas, Olmert to White House

28 11 2007

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Just 24 hours after securing an agreement between Israeli and Palestinian leaders to resume long-stalled peace talks, President Bush invited the pair to the White House to ceremonially inaugurate the first formal, direct negotiations in seven years.

Capping an intense flurry of diplomacy that salvaged a joint Israeli-Palestinian agreement at nearby Annapolis, Md., to launch a fresh round of talks, Bush planned to meet separately with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, then Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and finally to get them together for an afternoon session and declaring the talks formally under way.

After meeting their own low expectations for the Annapolis conference amid intense skepticism, Bush administration officials crowed with delight.

“President Bush has invited them both to the White House tomorrow to inaugurate those negotiations, and the two sides have agreed that they will return to the region and meet on December 12th to continue the process,” Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice told reporters late Tuesday.

Bush, along with Rice, had earlier salvaged a “joint understanding” between the Israelis and Palestinians, who had remained far apart on the details of the statement until the last minute.

But with prodding from the American side, Olmert and Abbas – troubled leaders with fragile mandates for peace – told international backers and skeptical Arab neighbors they are ready for hard bargaining toward an independent Palestinian state in the 14 months Bush has left in office.

“This is the beginning of the process, not the end of it,” Bush said after reading from the just-completed text the statement that took weeks to negotiate and yet sets only the vaguest terms for the talks to come.

“I pledge to devote my effort during my time as president to do all I can to help you achieve this ambitious goal,” Bush told Abbas and Olmert as the three stood together in the U.S. Naval Academy’s majestic Memorial Hall. “I give you my personal commitment to support your work with the resources and resolve of the American government.”

The two Mideast leaders were circumspect but optimistic.

“I had many good reasons not to come here,” Olmert told diplomats, including those from Arab states that do not recognize Israel like Saudi Arabia and Syria. “Memory of failures in the near and distant past weighs heavy upon us.”

Abbas, meanwhile, recited a familiar list of Palestinian demands, including calls for Israel to end the expansion of Jewish settlements on land that could be part of an eventual state called Palestine and to release some of the thousands of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails.

“Neither we nor you must beg for peace from the other,” Abbas said. “It is a joint interest for us and you. Peace and freedom is a right for us, just as peace and security is a right for you and us.”

Bush has held Mideast peacemaking at arms’ length for most of his nearly seven years in office, arguing that conditions in Israel and the Palestinian territories were not right for a more energetic role. Arab allies, among others, have warned that the Palestinian plight underlies other conflicts and feeds grievances across the Middle East, and have urged the White House to do more.

Bush seemed to answer the criticism Tuesday, giving detailed reasons why the time is now. He said Israeli and Palestinian leaders are ready to make peace, that there is a wider and unifying fight against extremism fed by the Palestinian conflict and that he world understands the urgency of acting now.

Later, in an interview with The Associated Press, Bush spoke of the importance of giving beleaguered Palestinians something positive to look forward to – and he sketched a grim alternative.

Without a hopeful vision, he said, “it is conceivable that we could lose an entire generation – or a lot of a generation – to radicals and extremists. There has to be something more positive. And that is on the horizon today.”

Negotiating teams will hold their first session in the region in just two weeks, on Dec. 12, and Olmert and Abbas plan to continue one-on-one discussions they began earlier this year. In addition, many of the same nations and organizations attending Tuesday’s conference will gather again on Dec. 17 in Paris to raise money for the perpetually cash-strapped Palestinians.

To attract Arab backing, the Bush administration included a session in the conference devoted to “comprehensive” peace questions – a coded reference to other Arab disputes with Israel. Syria came to the conference intending to raise its claim to the strategic Golan Heights, seized by Israel in 1967, and Lebanon wanted to talk about its border dispute with Israel. Rice told reporters that Syria and Lebanon spoke up, but she gave no details.

But in a sign of the difficult road ahead, Abbas’ speech was immediately rejected by Hamas, the militant Palestinian faction that stormed to power in the Gaza Strip in June, a month before Bush announced plans for the peace conference.

Hamas now governs the tiny territory and roughly a third of the people on whose behalf Abbas would negotiate a state. Hamas has refused to drop its pledge for Israel’s destruction, and the United States and Israel consider the group a terrorist organization.

Tens of thousands of Hamas supporters chanted “Death to America” in a Gaza City rally. The marchers, including women in black robes and full face veils, raised their index fingers heavenward in a sign of Islamic devotion, as they denounced the Annapolis conference as a sellout of Palestinian dreams. NorthJersey.com





New Jersey Law Makers Are Raising The Price To Drive

28 11 2007

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TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — A key New Jersey lawmaker wants the state to consider increasing its gasoline tax – an idea that puts him on a collision course with the governor who is looking to hike highway tolls instead.

New Jersey hasn’t boosted its 14.5-cent-per-gallon gasoline tax since 1988, giving it the nation’s third lowest gasoline tax.

But Assemblyman John Wisniewski, a Middlesex County Democrat, said increasing the levy would be more responsible than Democratic Gov. Jon S. Corzine’s plan to solve state fiscal woes by issuing bonds that would be paid back with increased highway tolls.

“The only way to have a real guaranteed system is to have a guaranteed revenue source, and the motor fuels tax has proven to be that over the long haul and I think that has to be part of a solution,” Wisniewski said on Tuesday.

Wisniewski said he doesn’t know how much the tax should increase, but that doubling it would bring in enough money to fix aging bridges and roadways without borrowing money.

“I think it’s a more equitable way to fund our transportation infrastructure,” he said.

But state Transportation Commissioner Kris Kolluri said the gas tax would have to increase to as much as 58.5 cents to meet current transportation needs and provide money to improve toll roads and meet future state transportation needs.

“Those are the facts,” Kolluri said. “Those are the numbers that we ran.”

Wisniewski is the Assembly Transportation Committee chairman and will have heavy influence over how Corzine’s plan advances through the Legislature. NorthJersey.com