$76M in grants to help towns maintain roads

TRENTON – The state on Friday said it will award $76 million in Local Aid Program grants to 376 municipalities to help them maintain their roads, which officials said will help keep property taxes from rising for such purposes.  

The Local Aid Program helps towns move forward on various street improvements, rehabilitation and safety projects. Besides road maintenance, the funds could be used for such things as pedestrian and bike paths.

The grants range from $27,000 for a road project in Mantoloking in Ocean County to more than $1.3 million for several road projects in Newark, Essex County.

Also awarded were $1.81 million worth of Local Aid Infrastructure Fund grants, ranging between $65,000 to fix up Warburton Avenue in Hawthorne, Bergen County, and $360,000 for repairs to the retaining wall bridge over Maple Avenue in Glen Rock, also in Bergen County.

Three Safe Streets to Transit grants worth $500,000 were also awarded.

Transportation Commissioner Jim Simpson said in a statement,  “These grants advance local projects without placing a burden on local property taxpayers.”

According to a department spokesman, 75 percent of the grant is awarded to a town when it approves a contractor for the particular project. The state awards the municipality the remaining 25 percent of the grant upon completion.

Including the Municipal Aid grant awards announced today, the Administration will award approximately $193.5 million in state-funded grants this year under several different Local Aid grant categories. An additional $101.2 million in federally funded grants will bring the total value of the Local Aid grant program to $294.7 million.

“New Jersey’s Local Aid program provides significant support to municipalities throughout the state,” N.J. League of Municipalities Executive Director William G. Dressel Jr. said in a statement. “Now more than ever, alternate revenues other than property taxes are needed and appreciated by mayors and residents alike.”

$76M in grants to help towns maintain roads