Wildflower CMS and Unterminated String Literal Error

I've been developing a site using Wildflower CMS developed using CakePHP
and ran into an infuriating problem. After working on it for several
weeks without issue I started receiving javascript errors that caused
everything to come to a grinding halt. The errors were all reported
using Firebug and the javascript debugger. The culprit:
Unterminated String Literal
After that in the Firebug console was:
$ is not defined
knew there was a strong possibility that the first error was somehow
causing the second and that top-down debugging was the way to go. After
inspecting the javascript code I discovered that there was a variable
assignment going on that spanned several lines. This might be legal in
PHP but not javascript.