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N.J. offers 2 new grant programs to businesses in GSGZs

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Melissa Orsen, CEO, NJEDA.
Melissa Orsen, CEO, NJEDA. - ()

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority, in partnership with the City of Trenton, announced that two new grant programs are available specifically to street level businesses in designated commercial areas of Trenton and other Garden State Growth Zones.

GSGZs include Trenton, Atlantic City, Camden, Paterson and Passaic.

Administered by the EDA, in collaboration with GSGZs, the Business Lease Incentive and Business Improvement Incentive programs are designed to support the growth of new and expanding businesses in targeted commercial areas. In Trenton, businesses located in the downtown Broad Street and State Street corridors are considered eligible.

“Programs administered under the EOA and initiatives like the State Office Building project are designed to help attract private investment in Trenton, which could be the impetus for growth in surrounding business hubs,” EDA CEO Melissa Orsen said. “The BLI and BII programs serve as a complement to these efforts as they help to position small businesses to capitalize on the increased activity.”

The BLI program offers reimbursement of a certain percentage of lease payments for two years to businesses and nonprofits. To find out more about the program, click here.

The BII program offers grants up to 50 percent of total project costs, but the cost can’t exceed $20,000. To find out more, click here.

“Opportunities for small businesses in Trenton are plentiful due to renewed efforts to revitalize downtown and drive foot traffic in key commercial corridors  both during regular business hours and into the evenings and weekends,” Trenton Mayor Eric Jackson said. “These programs could give business owners the extra boost they need to start a new business in Trenton, or refresh or expand an existing business.”

The EDA said it worked with each community to ensure the programs meet the needs of the local markets. The programs are currently on a pilot basis, with up to $200,000 available per city, per year, over three years.

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Emily Bader

Emily Bader


Emily Bader is the Web Editor and Social Media Coordinator at NJBIZ. She is a Brielle, N.J. native and a Rutgers University alum. You can contact her at emilyb@njbiz.com.

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