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January 23, 2009

Sustainable Jersey Update



Dear Mayor:

The much anticipated Sustainable Jersey program will go live on February 26, 2009.

At 10:00am on February 26, 2009, a press conference will be held to announce that the much anticipated Sustainable Jersey program will go live. Speakers at the press conference will provide an overview and information on how to get more details. The press conference will be held at the Statehouse, room 109, in Trenton.

Space at the press conference is very limited. If you are interested in attending, please contact Medea Villere, 732-932-5475 x660 Everyone who participated in the creation of Sustainable Jersey will be recognized at the event and through the materials distributed.

On February 26th, full details about how to apply for the Sustainable Jersey certification, and applications for the Sustainable Jersey Grants funded by Wal-Mart, will be available on the website Grant applications for the Sustainable Jersey Grants funded by Wal-Mart will be downloadable from the website and will be due late April. Awards will be made later in the spring of 09.

Workshops and information sessions on Sustainable Jersey will be held in March and April in six (6) locations throughout New Jersey, including North, Central, and South locations. Information on dates and locations will be available on the on Feb. 26th.

The release of Sustainable Jersey has been moved from January 2009 to February to give the organizers time to accommodate the all of the feedback we have received from the dozens of reviewers of the Actions and Tools. In December 2008 and January 2009, NJ municipalities volunteered to serve as Beta testers for the Sustainable Jersey program prior to its release by providing their feedback on the actions, tools, point system and program overall. There were also expert reviewers outside of the pre-existing Sustainable Communities Working Group who accessed the program and provided structured feedback. We would like to thank those municipalities, individuals, government agencies, and organizations who provided their feedback, including:

  • Cherry Hill
  • Montclair
  • Edison
  • South Orange
  • Princeton
  • Alexandria Township
  • Ocean City
  • Mountain Lakes
  • Michelle Knapik, Program Director for the Environment, Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation
  • Irene Boland and others at United States Environmental Protection Agency Region 2
  • Amy C. Boyajian, Rutgers Cooperative Extension, Water Resources Program
  • Governor Corzine’s Office, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, and the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities.

Wal-Mart Grants
In partnership with Sustainable Jersey, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has funded a new $200,000 grants program for New Jersey municipalities. Grants will be awarded for $10,000 or $25,000 per municipality. The grants are intended to help municipalities that join the Sustainable Jersey program institute new greening and sustainability initiatives within their communities. On February 23, 2009, municipalities will be able to enter the Sustainable Jersey program and apply for the grants. The grants will be one of the first incentives and resources that are provided through Sustainable Jersey.

About Sustainable Jersey
Sustainable Jersey™ is a program to help New Jersey municipalities go green and become more sustainable.

Sustainable Jersey is a certification and incentive program for municipalities in New Jersey that want to go green, save money, and take steps to sustain their quality of life over the long term. Sustainable Jersey will have required and elective “actions” that municipalities can implement to receive the certification. The actions address issues such as global warming, pollution, biodiversity, buying locally, community outreach, green building, and sustainable agriculture.

Sustainable Jersey will also provide a comprehensive package of tools, guidance materials, and resources to help municipalities make progress.

The program is an initiative of the New Jersey State League of Municipalities’ Mayors’ Committee for a Green Future, the Municipal Land Use Center at the College of New Jersey, the New Jersey Sustainable State Institute at Rutgers University’s Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, the Rutgers Center for Green Building, and the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities.

The partners convened a Sustainable Communities Working Group to support the development of the actions, tools, and incentives in Sustainable Jersey. The working group consists of over 150 New Jersey leaders, experts and organizations including state agencies, universities, non-profit organizations, and business leaders.

Very truly yours,


William G. Dressel, Jr.
Executive Director




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