More than a million dollars in state grants are on the way to Jersey Shore municipalities and counties to fund litter cleaning efforts, state officials said.
It’s part of a New Jersey Department of Enviromental’s “Clean Communities” grant program that helps municipalities and counties undertake clean-up efforts to beautify the state.
“Simple programs such as litter control do a lot for improving New Jersey’s communities, in terms of public health and quality of life,” said Mark Pedersen, Assistant Commissioner for Site Remediation and Waste Management. “This year’s Clean Communities grants will allow us to continue fostering environmental stewardship at the local level and help our communities to be more sustainable.”
The state is awarding $17.9 million in grants to New Jersey municipalities and more than $2.2 million to the 21 counties, a DEP release states. The four Jersey Shore counties will receive a total of slightly more than $520,000 to assist with countywide litter control programs.
Some of the Jersey Shore municipalities receiving the highest grants include Atlantic City in Atlantic County ($83,649), Ocean City in Cape May County ($92,667), Middletown in Monmouth County ($149,432), and Toms River in Ocean County ($218,713).
According to the DEP, the municipal grants are based on the number of housing units and miles of municipally owned roadways within each community.
The nonprofit New Jersey Clean Communities Council oversees the reporting requirements for the program, which is funded by a user-fee on manufacturers, wholesalers, and distributors that produce litter-generating products.
“We are hopeful that municipalities and counties will use Clean Communities funding wisely to pay for volunteer and paid cleanups, badly needed equipment purchases, enforcement activities, and education,” said Sandy Huber, Executive Director of New Jersey Clean Communities Council. “We are grateful for funding that helps keep New Jersey clean.”
See the specific grants to counties and municipalities here.