VERONA/CEDAR GROVE, NJ — Essex County has awarded $150,000 in Local Aid grants to both Verona and Cedar Grove to improve municipal playgrounds, recreation and athletic facilities.

The funds came from the Essex County Recreation and Open Space Trust Fund.

In Verona, the funding will go toward an accessible play area and adult exercise area at Liberty Field.

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In Cedar Grove, the grant money will go toward community park playground improvements.

“When the 2020 application process for the Local Aid Program began last year, the Coronavirus was not even on our radar,” Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo Jr. said. “Now, as restrictions are being lifted, and we return to a new normal, our parks and recreation spaces will have an even greater role than before. Families breaking free of stay-at-home orders will be looking for outlets and the construction contracts that will be awarded will help jumpstart the economy and create jobs, just as we did with the program in 2009 after the Great Recession.”