CAMDEN, NJ — Nearly $1 million in Neighborhood Revitalization Tax Credit (NRTC) funds will go toward programs run by The Cooper Health System of Camden and Interfaith Neighbors of Asbury Park, New Jersey American announced Monday.
The NRTC funds were approved by the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) in December 2019.
For Camden city, funding from the award - dedicated toward housing and overall economic development of low- and moderate-income neighborhoods - will help Cooper’s Cooper Plaza Housing and Community Improvements project, which partners with the Camden Special Services District, Cooper’s Ferry Partnership, Camden County Habitat for Humanity and St. Joseph’s Carpenter Society.
American Water says the aforementioned groups drive to lower the amount of vacant and blighted properties in the city, spruce up occupied homes, lower the amount of homes with code violations, increase participation in home improvement programs and better the state of parks and neighborhoods.
“For the past decade, New Jersey American Water has seized the opportunity to use the state’s generous NRTC program to provide funding to transformational projects in the communities we serve,” said Cheryl Norton, president of New Jersey American Water. “This year, we are proud to support Interfaith Neighbors in Asbury Park and the Cooper Health System in Camden. The positive impact that these programs can have on the residents of these communities exemplifies our commitment to giving back to the communities in which we serve.”
Per state law, 60% of the tax credit funds have to be applied toward housing and economic development - while the remainder must be used for activities that compliment them like small businesses, increasing mixed-income neighborhoods and eliminating hurdles to self-sufficiency.
“With New Jersey American Water’s generous support, we are continuing to make remarkable strides towards the revitalization of Camden,” said George Norcross, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Cooper Health System. “This is a perfect example of all that can come from innovative partnerships, strategic vision and a shared commitment to enacting positive change.”
According to the company, which has its headquarters in Camden, American Water has given roughly $8.2 million in grants to community programs since 2010 - $7.1 million specifically in Camden.