EDA PROVIDES NEARLY $1.2 BILLLION IN TOTAL ASSISTANCE IN 2013

Grow NJ Assistance and Economic Revitalization and Growth incentives programs point to increased development and employment in New Jersey in 2014

TRENTON, N.J. (January 15, 2014) – Preliminary 2013 totals show the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA), in support of the Christie Administration’s commitment to fuel  business and job growth in New Jersey,  provided nearly $1.2 billion in total financing to 213 projects throughout the state. This funding helped support the retention of more than 35,000 jobs including more than 5,200 jobs at risk of leaving New Jersey, the creation of more than 5,300 new jobs, over 9,400 construction jobs, and leveraged more than $2.6 billion in public/private investment.   

“The past year was busy, exciting and productive as we worked towards enhancing New Jersey’s business friendly environment,” said Michele Brown, CEO of the EDA.  “The EDA supported many significant projects that will result in new jobs, increased private investment and an enhanced quality of life for residents.”

Building on the momentum created by the Economic Opportunity Act of 2013, the  EDA Board at its January meeting approved the first project under the revised Economic Redevelopment and Growth (ERG) program as well as six projects, including two with locations in southern New Jersey, under the enhanced Grow NJ Assistance (Grow NJ) program.

In a major redevelopment undertaking for Newark, Four Corners Millennium Project Urban Renewal Entity, LLC was approved for an award of approximately $19.4 million under the Residential Economic Redevelopment and Growth Grant Program (RES ERG) and concurrently received approval for an Urban Transit Hub Tax Credit (UTHTC) not to exceed $33 million or $3.3 million annually for ten years.  The incentives will help advance the Four Corners Millennium Project (FCMP), a $410 million, multi-block, mixed-use redevelopment in the historic core of downtown Newark.

The RES ERG supports the rejuvenation of the former Paramount Theater on Market and Beaver Streets, one of two components that make up the first phase of the overall three phase project. The renovations and new construction will result in a fifteen-story building with an aggregate  estimated 321,376 square feet consisting of 182,270 square feet of residential space with 220 rental units, 49,731 square feet of retail space and 92 parking units in proximity to Penn Station, Newark light rail and major bus lines. The project will create an estimated 65 new full-time jobs and approximately 200 construction jobs.

The strengthened Grow New Jersey program, now the state's main job incentive program, is designed to assist businesses looking to grow throughout the state and provide New Jersey with a more effective tool to spur job growth in targeted areas.  Accordingly, the EDA took action to approve projects in Cranbury, Jersey City, New Brunswick, Pennsauken, Salem City and Woodbridge for Grow NJ incentives. These projects are slated to receive a total of approximately $88.3 million tied to the creation of 837 new full-time jobs and the retention of more than 291 existing full-time jobs in New Jersey. 

Notably, Forbes Media LLC, the company that publishes Forbes, ForbesLife and Forbes Asia magazines, received Grow NJ support of up to $27.1 million over ten years to move its headquarters to Jersey City, from its current location in New York.  In addition to the lease and improvement of the new 93,000-square-foot site, 350 jobs will move to Jersey City.  The net benefit to the State is estimated to be $72 million over the 20-year period under the law.

Wenner Bread Products, Inc., currently based in Long Island, is planning an expansion to New Brunswick to accommodate future growth, contingent upon incentive support.  A Grow NJ grant worth up to approximately $30.3 million was approved to encourage the company to increase employment in New Jersey and as a result, 253 new jobs will be created.

Ardagh Glass, Inc., a leading supplier of glass and metal packaging with a focus on the food and beverage markets was approved for a Grow NJ award of up to $20.1 million over ten years to support the installation of a new glass furnace at its Salem City facility, which will return the facility to full capacity and create greater efficiencies overall.  If the plan cannot be executed, Ardagh would plan to shift its production to lower cost facilities, eliminating the bulk of the jobs in Salem County and ultimately closing the site.  The Grow award incentivizes Ardagh to retain 258 existing jobs as well as add 72 new jobs.  It is estimated that the project will create a net benefit for the State of $54.5 million over the 20-year period required by the statute.

LiDestri Foods and Pennsauken Packing Company, LLC, a well-known manufacturer of sauces, dips and salsas, including the Francesco Rinaldi brand, received a Grow NJ incentive of up to $6,247,500 over ten years to expand operations and retain 27 jobs and create 60 new jobs at its Pennsauken facility, which has seen workforce reductions over time.  The job expansion plans are the result of an exclusive manufacturing agreement with TetraPak, a global leader in aseptic technologies, such as juice boxes. 

Stericycle, Inc., a company that provides disposal services for medical and biohazardous waste was approved for incentive support of up to $2.9 million over ten years to expand its business in Woodbridge Township, by leasing 20,000 square feet for an autoclave waste treatment facility. This project would create 42 jobs which would otherwise be lost to an existing facility in Pennsylvania.

Also in Middlesex County, Vintage Pharmaceuticals, LLC, will create 25 jobs and establish a research and development presence in Cranbury, as a result of a $972,790 Grow award.

The Board also continued support for small businesses throughout the state via  EDA core programs, including loan guarantees, participations and direct term loans under New Jersey Business Growth Fund, Premier Lender and Small Business Fund Programs.

EDA Board meetings are typically held at 10 a.m. on the second Tuesday of each month at 36 West State Street in Trenton. The Board meeting schedule, as well as Board agendas and minutes, are available at www.njeda.com. All Board actions will take effect at the expiration of the statutory period for the Governor's review and consideration of the meeting minutes.

More information and applications for the Grow NJ and ERG programs are available at Grow NJ and ERG websites: http://www.njeda.com/GrowNJ and http://www.njeda.com/ERG.

To learn more about opportunities for business growth throughout New Jersey, visit the state's business portal at www.NewJerseyBusiness.gov. For more information on the Stronger NJ Business programs, visit http://application.njeda.com/strongernjbusiness or call 1-855-SANDY-BZ (1-855-726-3929).

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