Skip to main content
You have permission to edit this article.
Atlantic County can benefit from New Jersey Economic Recovery Act

Atlantic County can benefit from New Jersey Economic Recovery Act

  • 0

Atlantic County could emerge as a big winner with the recent passage of the New Jersey Economic Recovery Act of 2020.

We saw how devastating the COVID pandemic has been to the leisure, hospitality and retail sectors. In fact, our county leads the entire nation in proportional percentage of employment loss due to COVID, a fact that we at the Atlantic County Economic Alliance (ACEA) shared with state officials and policymakers as we petitioned for economic relief and support in the months leading up to the passage of the historic legislation signed by Gov. Phil Murphy on Jan. 7.

With over 50% of employment in Atlantic County directly and indirectly dependent on these sectors, the need to create jobs in new industries is obvious and urgent. That’s the case we’ve been making to state and federal officials since the ACEA was established as a private-sector-directed, nonprofit economic development corporation in 2017. We are thrilled to see, with the passage of the Economic Recovery Act of 2020, that officials in Trenton have been listening.

While the bill will provide economic support for businesses across the entire state, it includes some provisions that are unique to Atlantic County, proving that the ACEA’s advocacy efforts have been effective.

Among the most notable programs created by the Act is the New Jersey Aspire Program, which creates the state’s only “Aviation District” around Atlantic City International Airport, the FAA William J. Hughes Technical Center, and the National Aviation Research and Technology Park. The Aspire Program provides up to $1.1 billion in tax credits for redevelopment projects over six years.

Another program with strong potential to help us diversify our economy is the Emerge Program. Emerge is primarily a business attraction tool that was designed to encourage job creation while supporting certain large-scale retention projects. The Emerge Program provides tax credit incentives to employers who invest in eligible locations and create new jobs. Enhanced benefits are available for business expansion projects in our Aviation District.

Other programs within the New Jersey Economic Recovery Act provide incentives to establish new supermarkets in food desert communities, help certain local businesses severely impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, and support brownfields redevelopment. Many of these programs have potential to stimulate a wide range of economic activity and encourage further growth of our Aviation District, which is a meaningful step toward fulfilling our mission of diversifying the economy in Atlantic County.

We believe these incentives will help us to continue our progress in focusing on job creation in life sciences, manufacturing, offshore wind, entrepreneurial services, food and agriculture, along with a special emphasis on aviation thanks to the existence of the new Aviation District.

One bright spot in the local economy is the development of the National Aviation Research and Technology Park. It’s gratifying to see that progress recognized with the Aviation District designation, and we look forward to building on that progress with the incentives provided by the Economic Recovery Act of 2020.

Lauren Moore, of Bordentown, is the president of the Atlantic County Economic Alliance. The alliance is a private-sector-directed, nonprofit economic development corporation that was established in 2017 for business attraction, retention, and marketing efforts in Atlantic County. The ACEA’s core areas of focus are building a robust business retention program, marketing competitive assets to drive industry diversification, relationship building to attract new companies, and creating partnerships to recruit, retain and promote a qualified workforce. Visit or call 609-245-0019 for more information.

Catch the latest in Opinion

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Related to this story

Most Popular

In the fraud trial of Elizabeth Holmes, the founder and former head of Theranos, emails and text messages have lately held center stage. Many of the communications in question were exchanged between Holmes and Ramesh Balwani, at the time her second-in-command, while the two were in a longtime romantic relationship. Here’s the troubling part: At least some of the messages might not have been ...

Even if you don’t follow politics closely, you’ve likely heard about the Hyde Amendment, which restricts taxpayer dollars from paying for elective abortions in federal programs such as Medicaid. It comes up often because Congress routinely incorporates it into its annual spending bills – and now it’s back in the news as lawmakers again wrestle over money. This policy is longstanding: It has ...

Workers have been losing their jobs to machines in the name of productivity and efficiency since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. But the pace of automation, 200 years later, is truly extraordinary. I was reminded of that last week when I took my first overseas trip since the pandemic began. For the first time, I didn't see anyone around to help me when I arrived at Los Angeles ...

The best local coverage, unlimited

Sign up for a digital subscription to The Press of Atlantic City now and take advantage of a great offer.


Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.


Breaking News