NJRA Partners with Counties on $21M in Rent Relief Grants

The New Jersey Redevelopment Authority (NJRA) has announced a partnership with Essex, Passaic, and Ocean Counties to administer and distribute grants to COVID-19 impacted small businesses who are struggling to pay their commercial rents. The Small Business Lease Emergency Assistance Grant Program will support small businesses with funds provided by each of the counties. The grants are only open to businesses located in each of the respective counties and are on a first-come, first-served basis.

“The New Jersey Redevelopment Authority is proud to continue our commitment to supporting small businesses as they fight to weather the economic fallout brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Small businesses are crucial to helping our state recover, and this latest round of funding will help to ensure that we leave no small business behind,” explained Leslie A. Anderson, president and CEO of the New Jersey Redevelopment Authority. “Impact has always been our primary objective, and this program has the added value of ensuring the stability of neighborhoods by providing funding to keep small businesses in their storefronts or other commercial spaces. Additionally, this collaborative effort with the counties will assist in expediting the distribution of the grants, and I am enormously grateful for the leadership in Essex, Ocean, and Passaic Counties.”

NJRA will use an automated application process in order to ensure the efficient distribution of the grants. Maximum eligible grant and application open dates are:

  • Essex County — Maximum grant: $30,000; Application opens: Monday, November 16th, at 9:00 a.m.
  • Ocean County — Maximum grant: $30,000; Application opens: Tuesday, November 17th, at 9:00 a.m.
  • Passaic County — Maximum grant: $20,000; Application opens: Monday, November 16th, at 9:00 a.m.

“Small businesses form the backbone of our local economy and non-profit organizations provide a vital safety net of social services for our residents. Both have been heavily impacted by the Coronavirus and both need our help to be able to economically survive,” noted Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr. “Through our partnership with NJRA, we are making grants available to help small businesses and non-profits pay their rent. This will help small businesses and non-profits keep their doors open and benefits landlords who will receive rental payments so they can pay property taxes and other expenses.”

“Small businesses are truly the heart and soul of our communities,” said Ocean County Freeholder Director Joseph H. Vicari, who serves as liaison to tourism and business development. “The Ocean County business community has been uniquely impacted by the pandemic since tourism and hospitality represent such a high percentage of the economic activity here. Our businesses were hit earliest and hardest by the pandemic. Throughout the summer months, our business owners found creative ways to keep their businesses open while keeping employees and the public safe, however they still need help.”

“As a small business owner, these grants are vital for supporting our business community during this difficult time. This will be our third program to specifically assist businesses throughout the county. We will be partnering with NJRA for this grant program. NJRA will administer the grant funding and ensure that our county businesses are provided every opportunity to participate,” stated Passaic County Freeholder Terry Duffy.

The collaboration between NJRA and the counties builds on the success of Phase 1 of NJRA’s Small Business Lease Emergency Assistance Grant Program that Gov. Phil Murphy announced over the summer. Grants for the program were made possible through CARES Act funding.

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