Advocates Call To Protect Local Trust Funds

Deadline approaches as advocates unite;
Assembly approves extension bill 51-19

New Jersey League of MunicipalitieOn June 25, 2012, the State Street Wire news services reported that the New Jersey State League of Municipalities, a coalition of mayors and affordable housing advocates were supporting legislation that calls on the state to leave a little over $160 million in affordable housing funds with the municipalities where the money currently resides.

The Legislature has approved a $31.7 billion budget, which includes the trust fund language mentioned above. The bill now awaits Governor Christie’s signature.

Last week, advocates were successful in lobbying for language in the budget that would allow local governments to commit the money through a municipal ordinance or resolution, effectively shielding it from transfer to the state.

The Assembly approved A2950, which would extend the deadline to spend the money an additional two years, on June 25, 2012, by a vote of 51-19 with 9 abstentions. Click here to see how your member of the Assembly voted.

Advocates also called for passage of the companion Senate Bill S2011 legislation to be approved. Would extend the deadline to spend the money an additional two years. The deadline to spend the money was set four years ago at July 17, 2012.

Quoting from a NJ.Com article,

“In a joint statement, leaders of the Anti-Poverty Network of New Jersey signed on to the bill and said ‘As households become more cost-burdened, the lack of reasonable housing options threatens families and entire communities,’ read the statement. ‘This will not lead to the kind of economic growth needed for a full financial recovery in New Jersey.’”

Click here for coverage from NJ.Com.

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