Ang Santos

Reporter

Ang Santos began his career in news journalism at WBGO in January 2014 as an intern. His love for telling stories about Newark's history landed him a position as a feature reporter. Before his time at WBGO, Ang was an overnight jock at Brookdale Public Radio on the Jersey Shore.

Since joining the news team, Ang prides himself on the ability to report on everything in any situation; hyperlocal stories, political conventions, major league sports teams, music. He's contributed reports to WHYY in Philadelphia and NPR news.

Outside of WBGO, Ang enjoys vegan cuisine with his loving girlfriend and tends to the needs of his many cats.

Ways to Connect

hubcityjazz.com

The 14th annual Hub City Jazz Festival comes back to New Brunswick this week.  

The multi-day Hub City Jazz Fest is a celebration of the music’s contemporary performers.

Ang Santos / WBGO

Several high-profile incumbent politicians have been reluctant to participate in debates in recent weeks.  Montclair State University Political science professor Brigid Callahan Harrison says it’s a tactic that could benefit their bid for re-election as challengers lose an opportunity for free media coverage.

“They need the name recognition.  They need to get their name in front of voters.  They want to make people aware of their stances, particularly the difference between them and the incumbent.”

Ang Santos / WBGO

Former Essex County Democratic Freeholder Rolando Bobadilla is endorsing Republican Bob Hugin for US Senate.  He recently changed his party affiliation to independent.  In supporting Hugin, he made a note that he still supports democrats.

“I can tell you that I also voted for and supported our democratic governor. It’s not blue, it’s not red, it’s about people who I think are genuine in addressing the issues.”

Hugin calls his democratic opponent, incumbent US Senator Bob Menendez, a career politician with no interest in the people of New Jersey.

Ang Santos / WBGO

Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie was at Rowan University to talk about his vision for the future of the Republican Party.  He hasn’t taken his eyes and ears off of Garden State politics since leaving office, taking shots at current Democratic Governor Phil Murphy.

“I have not spoken about my successor for nine months.  My successor can’t stop talking about me.  Other than Tammy, I’m the second most popular name that comes out of his mouth over the course of the last nine months,” Christie said.

Ang Santos / WBGO

New Jersey Transit, in partnership with the Mental Health Association of Essex and Morris unveiled a public art project at Newark Penn Station to bring awareness to the impacts mental illness has on families.  

Five black and white portraits makeup the new public art space on track one at Newark Penn Station. 

Voter excitement for candidates will play a role in how many registered voters make it out to the polls.  Ben Dworkin with the Rowan University Institute for Public Policy and Citizenship says voter registration numbers in New Jersey have been trending towards democrats over the last decade.

“This is going to be a big help for democratic candidates because when you are registered to vote you’re obviously more likely to actually vote.  If you’re not registered, most of these politicians simply don’t care, and why should they.”

Responsiblelending.org

The report from the Center for Responsible Lending says New Jersey residents carry a total outstanding student loan debt of about $41 billion dollars.  Diane Standaert with the research organization says some students are victim of bad practices from loan servicers, and currently there’s not much they can do about it.

Ang Santos / WBGO

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy says an investigation is underway into sexual assault allegations against a former administration official.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Katie Brennan, now the chief of staff with the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency, says she was assaulted by Albert Alvarez, in April 2017. Alvarez, served as Murphy’s campaign director of Latin and Muslim outreach and most recently worked for the state’s School Development Authority. He recently left that job but denies Brennan’s allegations.

Ang Santos / WBGO

A recent independent study of Newark’s water supply showed a portion of the system as ineffective against preventing lead exposure to residents.   

“Those folks that are affected in areas of the city will be getting a filter until we put the right chemical to provide the necessary corrosion control in people’s lead service line’s, so they won’t be affected by the lead that enters into their water at all,” Mayor Ras Baraka said.

Ang Santos / WBGO

New Jersey Congressman Tom MacArthur is calling for the federal government to open Nevada’s Yucca Mountain Repository to take in nuclear waste from 39 states. It comes on the heels of the recent shut down of the Oyster Creek Nuclear Plant in Lacey Township. Nevada’s U.S. Senators remain vehemently opposed to opening the site. Since there is no permanent nuclear waste storage site available, spent nuclear fuel will have to remain in Lacey.

Ang Santos / WBGO

  

A report from New Jersey Policy Perspective is urging state lawmakers to gradually increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour. 

Brandon McKoy with New Jersey Policy Perspective is encouraged by Governor Phil Murphy's economic plan to increase the minimum wage, but he says it should happen this year.

Ang Santos / WBGO

Governor Murphy says New Jersey should consider high wage innovation sectors that will bring the most jobs and investment into the state.  

“Clean energy, life sciences, advanced manufacturing, food and beverage, advanced transportation and logistics, information and high tech, film and digital media, and finance and insurance.”

Murphy hopes to create 300,000 new jobs by the year 2025.

Ang Santos / WBGO

New Jersey Republican US Senate candidate Bob Hugin is laying out a framework of ideas he says could make health care more accessible to Americans.  He believes the current system is dated, and information technology could create more transparency in health care.

Phil Gregory / WBGO

The New Jersey Legislature is considering bills that could better prepare electric providers during future storms. The bills require the utility companies to better monitor threats to power lines and take steps to get the power back on sooner. 

Assembly Telecommunications and Utilities Committee chairman Wayne DeAngelo says maintenance at aging switch yards and substations has been questionable during power outages.  

Ang Santos / WBGO

The study shows about 54 percent of Newark High School graduates enroll in college.  An increase from 39 percent showed in figures from previous numbers.  But Reginald Lewis with the Newark City of Learning Collaborative says not enough students are persisting towards degree completion.

“Just 23 percent of 2011 high school graduates in our sample earned a certificate or degree within six years.  Six years has become a common measure for completion nationwide in light of the fact that on average students are taking longer than four years to earn a degree,” Lewis said.

Ang Santos / WBGO

The third edition of Ask Governor Murphy aired Monday night on WBGO in Newark, WHYY in Philadelphia and WNYC in New York City.

Ask Governor Murphy is hosted by Nancy Solomon is a WBGO News production in collaboration with WNYC and WHYY.  Murphy discussed the latest developments with NJ Transit, college affordability, and other topics on the minds of Garden State residents.

The next edition of Ask Governor Murphy will air on Monday, November 19 at 7PM. Add to your calendar now:

Ang Santos / WBGO

The John Lennon Educational Bus Tour was created by Brian Rothschild and Lennon’s life partner Yoko Ono. Rothschild says it’s a non-profit mobile recording studio that provides young people with free hands on opportunities to record.

Ang Santos / WBGO

Before the non-profit Sea Turtle Recovery hospital opened at the Turtle Back Zoo, there was no long-term care available for sick and injured sea turtles in New Jersey.  Bill Deerr and Brandi Biehl are the dynamic duo that run the operation.  

“All sea turtles in the world are either threatened or endangered.  That means there’s not many left and we have to do everything we can to save them,” Deerr said.

Taking a tour of the treatment facility with Deerr and Biehl, they talk about the rehab tanks and some of their current patients.

Ang Santos / WBGO

Stop the Bleed is a campaign created by medical and law enforcement experts, developed in the wake of active shooter events across the United States. Dr. Adam Fox with University Hospital in Newark lectures school nurses and staff on how to stop life threatening bleeding.

“The goal is two pronged.  The goal is to educate as many people as possible in the three easy techniques for bleeding control.  The second one is to identify, advise, and equip people with the tools they need to use this,” Dr. Fox said.

asfvision.com / facebook.com/asitdfilm/

Anthony Ferraro was diagnosed with a degenerative eye disease at a very young age. His quest to be just another kid, led by his supportive family, set the stage for A Shot In The Dark, a new film documenting Anthony’s run at a state championship.

“Listen, I grew up blind and never let that stop me.  I was denied to a school I was never able to go to.  I used wrestling as an outlet to grow and learn things about myself,” Ferraro said.

Ang Santos / WBGO

Charles Richman with the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency says the state is setting aside $1 million to provide counseling assistance to homeowners.

“That million dollars ought to carry us through 17 to 1,800 families,” Richman said.  “If you can get to mediation early, the amount of debt they may own is manageable.  If they wait for that whole process to cycle though, and it takes several years often, the debt is so high there’s no way to ameliorate it.  The key is the first 60 days.”

Ang Santos / WBGO

New Jersey Transit needs around 290 train engineers on a daily basis to run the operation. Department of Transportation commissioner Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti says the state-run agency is short on engineers.

“This is an organization ran on human capitol. I can have all of the brand-new cars I want, but if I don’t have engineers, it does not matter.  The record is very clear.  There was very little done to recruit engineers and train them in a timely fashion.  We are trying to make up for that today.”

monmouthfilmfestival.org

The Monmouth Film Festival brings over 50 short and feature length films to Red Bank.  

“This is an experience. These are movies before they get onto Netflix or before they go to the Oscars,” said Nick Marchese, founder and president, Monmouth Film Festival.  “You get to talk to people.  I’m sure there’s times you go to a movie and say, ‘I wonder why they did that or maybe they should have done this.’  You get to talk to that filmmaker on the red carpet and basically break down the barriers between you and the storyteller.”

Ang Santos / WBGO

The Newark Department of Public Safety is upgrading its fire vehicle fleet, while also preparing for future winter storms.  Newark Mayor Ras Baraka says the new trucks are a cost-effective investment in the city’s public safety and public works departments.

“Three custom 110-foot aerial ladder trucks, seven hazmat fire vehicles, eleven sanitation dump trucks, and nine street sweepers.  The sanitation trucks are equipped with snow plows in the front of them, thank god,” Baraka said.

Ang Santos / WBGO

Ever ask Siri the answer to zero divided by zero?

"Imagine that you have zero cookies and you split them evenly among zero friends. How many cookies does each person get? See? It doesn't make sense. And Cookie Monster is sad that there are no cookies, and you are sad that you have no friends."

Ang Santos / WBGO

  

Newark’s city run extreme weather shelter won’t close at least until the end of August, but Mayor Baraka is looking into other ways to support the homeless.

“Every month is not a rough weather event so don’t have justification for keeping the shelter open 365 days a year.  There are providers who can do that and will do that.  We will support them, so they continue to do that.”

Baraka is creating a city-wide commission to help the homeless.

Ang Santos / WBGO

The Wells Fargo Regional Foundation is giving a grant of $100,000 to a pair of Newark non-profit organizations that advocate for the Lincoln Park neighborhood in the city’s central ward.      

The community organizations will hold several meetings to hear how residents would like to use the grant. Anthony Smith of Lincoln Park Coast Cultural District expects an insightful response.

Phil Gregory / WBGO

Restructuring New Jersey’s school funding formula has been a longtime plan for Senate President Steve Sweeney.  His plan increases the total amount of state aid to schools, but also changes the amount of aid districts receive.  

“Trying to find a solution to end the unfairness going on in this state.  Actually, the injustice where you have two classes of kids; the haves and the have nots,” Sweeney said.

In 2016, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and Newark Public Schools sent out a joint statement calling for additional testing, monitoring and remediation of Newark's water supply in schools after discovering levels of lead that exceed the allowable state and federal levels. The city says they are complying with recommendations to address lead in Newark's water. Two groups have filed a lawsuit against the city claiming enough hasn't been done.  

Percussionist Chief Baba Neil Clarke is performing on Sunday July 1 at Commodore Barry Park in Brooklyn as part of the International African Arts Festival, a celebration that kicks off Saturday June 30 and goes until the 4thof July.  

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