The FundBook NJ State Edition
Helping communities find the federal funding they need.
The View from New Jersey State The education funding front
School districts in NJ eagerly await the third round of the Race to the Top competition. New Jersey is one of the nine (9) states that were finalists in round two (2). RTTP funding should bring a new wave of grant offerings, particularly for early education programs. In an effort to align the New Jersey Department of Education with Governor Christie’s goals, Acting Commissioner Christopher Cerf reorganized the department into four divisions: one that identifies and measures goals; another to recruit, develop and retain teachers and administrators; one to ensure the state’s standardized tests are meaningful; and a fourth that oversees charter schools and other alternative programs. One of the key figures appointed to the NJDOE is David Hespe who will serve as Cerf’s Chief of Staff. Hespe served as Education Commissioner from 1999-2001 under Christine Whitman’s term as Governor. In other news, Governor Christie gave school districts a 2 percent boost in their funding for the FY11-12 school year. It was a year ago that districts faced the largest state aid cuts it had ever experienced. Christie was ordered by the State Supreme Court to allocate the funds. More than half of the funding restored this year will be spread among the thirty-one (31) former Abbott districts which are the state’s largest and most financially distressed districts. §
Another month has gone by, and still NJ municipalities await release of Green Acres funds that have been nominally awarded. Municipalities have been advised by the State to proceed with their accepted projects at their own risk if they need to initiate projects before funds are made available. We have our clients whose p.2 ~ The Fundbook - NJ | August 2011
plans are not as pressing to wait on further news from the State. The other major state funding source, the NJ DOT, has finally released guidance for this year’s application cycle. The subject of much speculation, these offerings have indeed been drastically reduced. Municipal Aid, Safe Streets to Transit, and Bikeways are the only three opportunities available at this time. The best piece of advice we have given our clients is to ensure that proposals developed for each program do not encompass activities that would be eligible for funding from another of these DOT programs. Follow the guidance carefully! Applications are due in late September. §
Don’t forget your foundations
As we indicated in the previous installment, foundation funding is becoming increasingly vital to the success of community programming in municipalities around the state. We continue to urge clients to develop relationships and call upon existing connections with local and regional non-profit entities in order to reap the benefits of all funding opportunities that arise. One significant opportunity still available only to organizations with a current tax exempt status under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code is the State Giving Program, funded by the Wal-Mart Foundation: The minimum grant request is $25,000 to fund activities in five areas of focus: Education, Workforce Development / Economic Opportunity, Health and Wellness, Environmental Sustainability, and Hunger Relief. New Jersey municipalities with strong ties to community-based non-profit entities - such as private schools, youth alliances, food pantries, and little league organizations – should consider collaborating on an application. Applications are due September 9, 2011. For more informa-
Grants consulting & public relations services
n 1968, while working in the inner sanctum of government as a congressional and gubernatorial press secretary, John R. Bruno, Sr. recognized that munici-
palities were not pursuing federal and state grant funding simply because they did not have the resources to do so. Responding to this need, John founded Bruno Associates, Inc. to empower public entities with quality services and expertise that
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would enable them to raise money without raising taxes. Our track record speaks for itself. Over the past 40 years, Bruno Associates has secured more than $500 million in grant funding, emerging as a foremost authority in grant procurement for municipalities and counties, public school districts,
Bruno AssociAtes, inc. 1373 BroAd street, suite 304 clifton, nJ 07013
educational institutions, and non-profit organizations. Among some pretty stiff competition, Bruno Associates, Inc. continues to remain one of the oldest, family-owned grant and public relations consulting firms in the state of New Jersey. Our reputation is built on commitment, consistent leadership and your success. Our stability and depth of experience combine to assist you to expand and develop in the future â€“ fiscally and responsibly. We are a company where experience counts.
Donâ€™t take our word for it: See some of our satisfied NJ local government clients Township of Belleville Township of Brick Borough of Paramus City of Clifton Mine Hill Township Town of Harrison Township of Irvington
City of Linden Belleville Board of Education North Bergen Board of Education North Bergen Township Town of Guttenberg
Town of Secaucus Township of Brick City of Brigantine Bloomfield West New York Board of Education Essex County Parks
Old Bridge Municipal Utilities Authority Brick Housing Authority City of Newark Municipal Council City of Orange Township Borough of Riverdale
Augusr 2011 | The Fundbook - NJ ~ p.3
Helping communities secure the federal funding they need The FundBook bridges the gap between your needs and those sources of federal funding available to your community. With a list of features that is growing each month, the FundBook can help you… • Stay Organized – User-friendly features help you sort through the federal funding quagmire and locate quality grants. • Gain Access – Expert insights into the federal assistance programs that matter to you. • Prioritize Effectively – Tools to help your community navigate the federal funding process.
How We Help:
Hundreds of communities across the nation are using the FundBook to navigate an increasing array of federal funding opportunities available to cities and counties each year. Designed to give local government leaders a commanding view of the federal funding process, each issue promotes and educates a do-it-yourself approach to pursuing assistance in Washington, D.C. and working with the federal agencies. The FundBook is designed to be the most userfriendly federal funding resource for all sizes of local government.
ues To begin receiving iss of the FundBook, visit
w w w .fu nd bo ok .o rg an d si gn up fo r ou r em ai l lis t.
Unlike other news magazines or government relations products designed for local governments, the FundBook endeavors to provide specific, actionable advice rather than general news and policy information. Drawing upon the grant and appropriations experience of our staff and contributors, we strive to give our readers the tools needed to stay on top of the federal funding process every step of the way.
for the FundBook today and join a growing list of cities and counties that are maximizing their ability to secure federal funding. Plus, check back with us soon as we grow our capabilities at the state-level! p.4 ~ The Fundbook - NJ | August 2011
tion, visit http://goo.gl/EDDTU Another organization that offers support for important community programs is the Delta Dental of New Jersey Foundation. This is an opportunity that is available to most non-profit entities, including municipal governments and school districts. Each year the foundation provides financial support for community clinics and facilities that help the underserved gain access to dental care, head start programs, and dental education programs. A number of local health departments are on the list of successful grantees. Applications for the first round of funding are due August 19th. Visit http://goo. gl/dm45S to learn more. Â§
As many municipal administrations are aware, Sustainable Jersey is a comprehensive sustainability program for communities that links certification with strong state and private financial incentives, and a fully resourced program of technical support and training. Though the Small Grants Program sponsored by WalMart is no longer available, actions that earn points toward Sustainable Jersey Certification can be initiated and documented year round. Completing this process increases a municipalityâ€™s chances of winning competitive funding not only from Sustainable Jersey, but also from other state, federal, and foundation agencies. It also ensures eligibility for non-competitive funds from a number of sources. The next two certification deadlines are August 26, 2011 and January 6, 2012. Visit http://goo.gl/f9k0n for more details on this program. Â§ This article was contributed by Patricia Lyon and Nathan Burroughs of Bruno & Associates. They are very knowledgable of the grants and funding territory in NJ and work with local governments and non-profits on grants-related services there. www.fundbook.org
Augusr 2011 | The Fundbook - NJ ~ p.5