Investing in Housing Choices Generates Billions for NJ Economy

Advocates Present Economic Impact
Report to NJ Assembly Committee

Lobby Day

(L to R) Rev. Jeremy Montgomery, Greater Plainfield Habitat for Humanity and Katelyn Cunningham, Monarch Housing

On June 15, 2015, Monarch Housing Associates staff joined 100 fellow advocates from across the state for the Housing and Community Development Network (the Network) of New Jersey’s annual Lobby Day.

Richard Brown, Taiisa Kelly, and Katelyn Cunningham participated in meetings with lawmakers urging greater investment in the state budget for housing and community development.

As part of Lobby Day, New Jersey nonprofit community developers testified on the sector’s multi-billion dollar economic impact at a State House hearing before the Assembly Commerce and Economic Development Committee. The Stronger Together report that found that the sector has generated $12 billion for the state’s economy.

“New Jersey’s community development sector has improved the quality of our neighborhoods while at the same time growing our state and local economy. State leaders need to invest in ways to create more homes, including preserving money from the Affordable Housing Trust Fund and expanding the Neighborhood Revitalization Tax Credit Program. As the Stronger Together report shows, greater investment spurs greater opportunities and helps our economy and our residents thrive.”

Said Staci Berger, president and chief executive officer of the Network.

According to Stronger Together, since 1989, NJ community developers have created 82,000 jobs, provided job training for more than 10,500 local residents, employed 10,000 permanent staff members, and contributed $5.5 billion in worker wages and in contracts with NJ businesses. They have also built over 3.7 million square feet of commercial space for new and expanding small businesses. Although they are exempt from some taxes as nonprofits, Stronger Together found that community developers have generated $320 million in state tax revenue.

Joining Berger and Patrick Morrissy, executive director of HANDS, Inc. on the expert panel providing testimony at the Assembly Committee hearing were Barbara Dunn, executive director of Paterson Habitat for Humanity and Rhonda Coe, principal and founder of R. B. Coe Consulting and executive director of Building Believers Trust Corporation.

Click here for a Lobby Day Press Release from the Network.

Click here for more information on the Network.