Credit: Krystal Knapp/Planet Princeton

Local Beat is NJ News Commons’ weekly roundup of the best and most topical reporting from local news sites around New Jersey.

During his state of the state address, Gov. Chris Christie talked up the $3 million in savings being experienced annually by the now merged Princeton Township and Princeton Borough. Krystal Knapp of Planet Princeton points out that the number is really more like $700,000 — plus the fact that Township residents now get municipal trash pickup.

The post office creed states, “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.” Well, not in Springfield, NJ. After Springfield residents complained to Patch editor Liz Alterman that they hadn’t received mail delivery for a few days earlier this month, Alterman followed up with the local postmaster who blamed the weather. Alterman then went further up the postal service chain where officials promised a “comprehensive review” of the cessation in deliveries.

“We almost stopped a guy from becoming a judge this week,” writes Charlie Kratovil, editor of New Brunswick Today, somewhat tongue in cheek. Kratovil is talking about a story on the potential appointment of former Middlesex County Prosecutor Bruce Kaplan as a superior court judge after he had left his county post last year under “a barrage of allegations.”

Blogfinger, the indie news site of Ocean Grove, claims it has the exclusive on a reversal by FEMA: After Ocean Grove’s application and first appeal to FEMA for disaster aid to rebuild the boardwalk failed, FEMA reversed the denial after a second appeal.

“This David and Goliath story has finally turned for the people of Ocean Grove who pleaded for fairness from the Feds and sets a precedent for the future,” writes Paul Goldfinger, editor and publisher of Blogfinger. “It speaks for the power of the people in our democracy to complain enough that a mountain can be moved. But, wait….where’s the money?

Meanwhile at the Shore, More Monmouth Musings has a decidedly negative take on Congressman Frank Pallone’s request for a federal investigation into the Stronger Than the Storm campaign.

In lighter news, Morristown Green’s resident cartoonist Matt Keown responded to Christie’s state of the state address with a humorous sketch skewering the idea that a longer school day would improve student performance (see one cell from the cartoon below).

Credit: Joe Mahoney, Morristown Green

Credit: Matt Keown, Morristown Green

The weirdest local news of the week must be Lacey Patch’s report on how another local news site, The Lacey Reporter, was victimized by a hacker who posted a fantastical story on a “squirrel AIDS scare.”

In the “cool stuff” category, Bernie Wagenblast of Cranford Radio collected short air-checks of New York and New Jersey radio stations from the 1960s and ’70s, and edited them together  to create the impression of what one might have heard while tuning an AM radio during those two decades in Cranford. Give it a listen here.

Our full roundup:

Christie Perpetuates Myth That Consolidation Reduced Princeton Budget by $3 Million Planet Princeton
Postmaster Asks Residents to Clear Snow, Ice for Mail Carriers Springfield Patch
Postal Officials Begin ‘Comprehensive Review’ of Springfield OperationsSpringfield Patch
OGCMA Announces a Positive Ruling by FEMA re: Boardwalk Restoration Project Blogfinger
FEMA Invites Ocean Grove to the Dance, but Where’s the Money? A Blogfinger Editorial Blogfinger
Reckless Media Reports Federal Investigation Into Christie On Pallone’s Say So More Monmouth Musings*
EXCLUSIVE: Christie Quietly Nominates Notorious Lynch Ally to Become Superior Court Judge New Brunswick Today
Sea Bright Library Razing Sparks Debate Red Bank Green
‘Joe Mahoney’: Longer school days ain’t the answer, Gov! Morristown Green*
Editorial: Breakdown of Governor Christie’s Speech today Jersey Tomato Press
Bridgegate Strikes Close to Home for Livingston Residents and LeadersLivingston TAP
Remembering World War I… from the site of Mansion in May Morristown Green*
A Radio Trip Back in Time Cranford Radio
Phony News Story Leads to ‘Squirrel AIDS’ Scare in Lacey Lacey Patch

*Asterisks are available for reposting through the NJ News Commons Story Exchange.