This Program will facilitate Atlantic City’s effective utilization of allocated funds for community-driven capital projects. The Program is a pilot grant program that will utilize $26 million of ARP funding which will be deposited into ERF. ERF will authorize a grant as listed under N.J.S.A 34:1B-7.13(a)(12) for:
“a fund to provide grants or competition prizes, either directly or through a not-for-profit entity, that is consistent with economic development priorities as defined by the authority’s board, where funds have been specifically allocated to the economic recovery fund for this purpose, including but not limited to an appropriation or transfer from another government entity.”
Governor Murphy’s economic plan, “The State of Innovation: Building a Stronger and Fairer Economy in New Jersey,” identifies several economic development priorities, including “investing in communities to build world-class cities, towns, and infrastructure statewide.” The Atlantic City Revitalization Grant Program will address this priority as this grant will help support more capital projects throughout Atlantic City and will be focused on ensuring that communities are directly supported by ensuring the project addresses the negative impact of COVID-19 and contributes to Atlantic City’s revitalization. These capital projects must directly support Atlantic City neighborhoods and communities and include either public infrastructure improvements that support the completion of the project, capital construction projects that renovate or restore a vacant or partially vacant (at time of application and up to approval) building, or new construction projects that aim to increase the downtown vitality, public space utilization, foot traffic, and overall economic prosperity in Atlantic City.
The goal of this Program is to proactively address the negative economic impacts of the pandemic by investing in projects that demonstrate an ability to cultivate the environment and neighborhoods necessary to attract and retain a local workforce, enable business creation and tourism, enhance downtown vitality through small business support efforts, support clean and safe initiatives, address food insecurity issues, and buttress social impact supports for the community at large. Administered by the Authority, this Program will support real estate development, specifically capital projects (each, a “Project”) in the form of Grants, to support rehabilitation or new construction, as well as other development costs associated with a maximum award of $10 million in grant funding to one Project. This will then meet the requirement of “Investing in Communities” by providing funding to activate underutilized properties for community focused investments and to activate projects that will catalyze new business sectors in NJ, support communities, and improve the business community within Atlantic City. This grant will improve investment in communities by working to activate underutilized, distressed, or vacant land for projects in order to promote equitable economic growth and community wealth building in Atlantic City.