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Legislative Updates

Governor Murphy Signs Boardwalk Preservation Fund Legislation

On August 15, the Chamber of Commerce Southern New Jersey (CCSNJ) gave remarks at the bill signing for S-3989/A-5675 (Sarlo/Testa/Greenwald/Moen), which established a $100 million "Boardwalk Preservation Fund." This initiative, which was included as part of the final FY2024 state budget, was announced by Governor Phil Murphy in March of this year and won nearly unanimous legislative approval during the budget deliberation process this past June.

As of today’s signing, the Boardwalk Preservation Fund is a grant program administered by the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) that aims to make critical investments in the boardwalk infrastructure at the Jersey Shore. Specifically, the program’s goal is to address the most critical and necessary capital needs in shore communities by rebuilding outdated and crumbling boardwalk infrastructure, removing blight, and mitigating condemned and abandoned properties on the boardwalks.

Christina Renna, president & CEO of the CCSNJ was invited to provide remarks at today’s bill signing. In her comments, she stated that boardwalks are critical economic drivers for the travel and tourism industry in the South Jersey region and across the state. She elaborated by outlining the many ways boardwalks have a vast overall economic impact – by attracting businesses, creating jobs, bringing new housing opportunities, and allowing for exciting recreational opportunities to name a few.

Additionally, Ms. Renna noted her role as Vice Chair of the Atlantic City Restart and Recovery Working Group, which was created by the Murphy Administration, and led by the late Lt. Governor Sheila Oliver, in 2020 during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Working Group’s report was issued in May of 2021 and its top recommendation was a greater state investment in the City’s boardwalk. To read the full report, click here.

Although the press conference was held in Atlantic City, the $100 million allocation will be spread to boardwalk projects across the state’s shoreline. During the press conference, Governor Murphy announced that the application period was officially open for the Boardwalk Preservation Program, with a program deadline of September 15, 2023. Eligible applicants are costal municipalities and/or counties that can provide a local match of at least five percent of the total project cost. To learn more details on the program, click here.

To read the official press release on the bill signing, click here.

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Hilary Chebra

Manager, Government Affairs, CCSNJ

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