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Public Information » E-Newsletter » E-Newsletter Nov 08

New Era, New Span --- Bridge Commission's E-Newsletter --- November 2008


Comegno Reappointed Chairman
Announces Next Phase of "New Era, New Span"

Commission Wins Grants for Public and Officer Safety --- Money to Fund Port Safety and Body Armor


At the Commission’s annual Reorganization Meeting, John B. Comegno II was reappointed Chairman. Under his tenure, he initiated “A New Era, A New Span”, a comprehensive reform program that has made the Commission a model agency of openness, transparency, and accountability.
Under Comegno’s leadership, many impressive accomplishments were achieved, elevating the level of bridge maintenance to “state-of-the art,” expanding the economic development and shared services function of the Commission beyond any expectations, and distinguishing the Commission’s bridges as “the best bargain around” by holding the line on tolls.
   Continued from e-mail below    

Among the accomplishments:

  • First-ever smart technology on our bridges & partnership with Drexel 
  • No toll increase in Bridge Commission’s 2007-2008 and 2008-2009 budgets 
  • Providing grant assistance which has resulted in $848,800 in grant monies being provided to our BurlCo neighbors; an 11:1 return on investment
  • Issuance of pooled bonds saving more than $13 million for taxpayers
  • Saving Palmyra Cove Nature Park acreage and preserving an additional 50 acres 
  • Improvement projects in host communities Burlington City (Gateway Project) & Palmyra (Streetscaping), Beverly City, Mt. Holly, North Hanover, Riverton
  • Assisting County with cleanup of Rancocas Creek which ravaged towns; reaffirming commitment to project despite unforeseen additional cost
  • Shared Services initiatives: vehicle wash system, municipal aid analysis, COAH analysis, regional police study, stormwater management, energy audit applications

The “New Era, New Span” reform program included these ongoing initiatives

  • independent management study (completed Aug 2007) to ensure that vendors/ contractors are satisfying their obligations to the Commission; all recommendations have been implemented.
  • Mandatory ethics and conflicts training
  • Continued evening Commission meetings
  • Expansion of the Commission website (contract bidding notices, job openings, meeting schedules, and other important public information)
  • Continuation of open and competitive procurement policies and contract awards consistent with governing law and the implementation of checks and balances resulting from the management study


The U.S. Department of Homeland Security and N.J. Division of Criminal Justice have awarded two separate grants to the Bridge Commission to help ensure the public’s safety and protect police officers with body armor.
   Continued from e-mail below   
Homeland Security’s $213,750 grant will allow the Bridge Commission to install a computer-based proximity card access control system at both the Tacony-Palmyra Bridge and Burlington-Bristol Bridge and an alarm on the perimeter fences on the Pennsylvania side of the Tacony-Palmyra Bridge.
The N.J. Division of Criminal Justice grant of more than $2,000 will help the Bridge Commission purchase body vests for its police officers. Grant funds are authorized under the 2008 State Body Armor Replacement Fund Program





Palmyra Cove Nature Park’s 5th Annual Winterfest December 6th

Live reindeer, a dog sled and a petting zoo are just a few of the fun events and activities for the entire family at this year’s 5th annual Winterfest, a free event sponsored by Palmyra Cove Nature Park.

Winterfest is Saturday, December 6th beginning 10:30 am to 3:30 pm at Palmyra Cove Nature Park, 1335 Rt. 73 North, Palmyra. The park is on the river and under the Tacony-Palmyra Bridge.

More information on Winterfest is available by calling 856-829-1900, extension 270 or by clicking on the above Winterfest flyer.


NEW THIS YEAR: Consider starting your day with a Family Hike! Discover how animals get ready for winter at our “Preparing for Winter Family Hike” from 9 to 11 AM. Free to PCNP members, $5/person or $15/family. Call 856-829-1900, ext. 270 for more information.

Creating Gardens for Birds and Butterflies

The Falcon the Focus in Atlantic City

The garden areas at Palmyra Cove Nature Park are being designed and expanded for native species plants and habitat for birds and butterflies. Thanks to the work of Pam Reid, our volunteer gardeners and The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, our gardens are carrying forth our mission of conservation, education and recreation

   Continued from e-mail below    

The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society also recently recognized Palmyra Cove by awarding us a certificate for “outstanding public planting” and “improving the quality of life through horticulture”. Palmyra Cove’s gardens and our dedicated volunteer gardeners were also recognized in the Courier-Post’s “Our Towns” section on November 6th.

Our “Focus on the Falcon” video was front and center at PCNP’s display booth at this year’s New Jersey League of Municipalities convention in Atlantic City. The video follows two peregrine falcons that live in a nest box atop the Tacony-Palmyra Bridge from hatching to banding—the video tells a compelling story of conservation and education at PCNP.

More information on Palmyra Cove Nature Park

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