Regional Briefs – November 19, 2014

Contractor Sentenced For Defrauding Customer

TRENTON – A contractor who was paid nearly $100,000 to renovate a Bronx home was sentenced on Tuesday to 14 months in prison for defrauding her of the money, The Associated Press reported. Raymond Norville in 2011 agreed to renovate the victim’s newly purchased home for $250,000. He submitted invoices for purchased materials, got paid $98,600, but didn’t deliver the materials to the job site or provide proof that he bought the items.

Retiring Congressman to Take Helm of Science Group

TRENTON – Retiring Rep. Rush Holt is taking a job at the helm of the group that publishes the science group of scholarly journals, The Associated Press reported. The American Association for the Advancement of Science announced Tuesday that the New Jersey Democrat, who also has a Ph.D. in physics, will become its CEO and executive publisher effective February.

NJ Turnpike Will Not Privatize Toll Collections

WOODBRIDGE, N.J. – Officials have decided not to privatize toll collection on the New Jersey Turnpike and Garden State Parkway,NJ.com reported, in exchange for two unions agreeing to concessions that provided enough savings so officials did not need to seek another round of pay cuts.

Drunk Steals Bulldozer For the Ride Home

HARRISON, N.J. – A drunk eager to get out of the cold stole a bulldozer in order to get a ride home, blazing a path of destruction, leveling signs, three benches, a tree, a drinking fountain, and left a maze of tracks in the grass as he tried to maneuver, the Jersey Journal reported. Christopher Russell, 30, told arresting officers he was cold and was trying to ride home to Newark.

Transit Official: ‘Stupidity’ Caused Drill Bit in Train

NEW YORK – The “stupidity” of contracted workers led to a giant drill bit piercing the ceiling of a New York City subway tunnel in October, an MTA official said Monday. The 10-inch drill being used to connect the LIRR to Grand Central Terminal scraped an occupied train but no one was injured. MTA official Michael Horodniceanu said it is “hard sometimes to battle stupidity. In this case, I don’t know what else to call it.”