Burlco Economic Development Department Launches Network on “Linked In” Site
Local Businesses and Professionals Invited to Join Group
Burlington County Bridge Commissioners announced their collaborative effort with The Burlington County Freeholders to foster economic growth in Burlington County by establishing a professional networking outlet for Burlington County businesses, organizations, and individuals. Through the newly created networking group at www.linkedin.com, members can share critical information and ideas and make important connections.
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“The network will serve as a virtual meeting place for businesses and professionals in Burlington County,” said Bridge Commission Chairman John Comegno. “Although there will be news from the County’s Economic Development arm, the site will also provide group members with a place for discussions about how to grow the economy in our County.”
Freeholder-Director Bruce Garganio added, “This adds in no small way to the other steps we have taken in recent months to bolster economic growth and job opportunities. Our Job Seekers webpage continues to be one of the most visited sites on the County’s website. Meantime, more real estate brokers and land owners are populating the bridge commission’s site finder webpage, a tool which gives business that are looking to expand some solid information about available commercial and industrial properties throughout the County.
“Through LinkedIn, we’ll get some serious feedback from the business community-at-large. That can only enhance our efforts to grow businesses and jobs,” Garganio added.
LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional network with more than 175 million members, allows professionals to connect with others with similar backgrounds, enlarge their professional networking circle, and establish new connections that may lead to new opportunities. The Burlington County Economic Development Network is one of many groups established on LinkedIn to help gather together individuals with a common goal, in this case, to foster economic growth in the County.
Through the Burlington County Economic Development Network, businesses can use the information, ideas and new connections to help them to become more competitive and agencies and organizations can learn how to change and develop programs and provide services that will help businesses to become more competitive in the County.
“Using an established professional networking site liked LinkedIn is a smart move, not only on behalf of the County and Commission for establishing it, but also for the hard-working residents of Burlington County, who can help contribute to the positive growth to our local economy,” said Commissioner Troy E. Singleton.
Bridge Commission’s Latest Shared Service Trims Cost for Burlco Municipalities to Stripe and Letter Police Vehicles
As part of its latest shared services initiative, the Burlington County Bridge Commission will offer towns the service of applying professional striping, lettering and graphics for their police emergency vehicles, for the cost of materials only. Work will be done at the Commission’s maintenance department here by fully trained maintenance personnel who currently stripe and letter all Commission vehicles.
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“What would normally cost a town between $400 and $700 per vehicle, will now cost just $150 each through this shared service initiative,” said Commission Chairman John Comegno. “And if more towns participate, that figure will go even lower.”
Interested towns are asked to send a request letter from their mayor or police chief and photos and/or images of its current emblem or decal to the Commission. The Commission will schedule work on a first-come, first-served basis, and make every effort to accommodate all requests in a timely manner.
“This shared service has the potential to save Burlington County towns over $275,000, and that’s just for police vehicles,” said Vice-Chairman James D. Fattorini. “If this program is successful, the Commission may expand to include other municipally owned emergency response vehicles.”
Commission Adopts Budget
Twelfth Consecutive Year with NO TOLL INCREASE on Tacony-Palmyra & Burlington-Bristol Bridges
Burlington County Bridge Commissioners John Comegno, Jim Fattorini, and Troy Singleton voted at its September meeting to adopt the Commission’s 2013 Annual Budget and Capital Budget Program, which was approved by the State of New Jersey, and includes no toll increase on its two landmark bridges. The New Jersey Department of Community Affairs’ Division of Local Government Services made no changes to the Commission’s budget and approved the budget as submitted.
“I’m pleased that our budget has received DCA approval and I’m proud to present a budget with a 0% increase over last year’s budget,” said Bridge Commission Chairman John Comegno. “This budget provides for aggressive bridge maintenance and direct property tax relief for our residents, all with no toll increase.”
Vice-Chairman James Fattorini added, “We say our bridges are the ‘best bargain around’—that’s a phrase we’ve used for the last twelve years.”
The Commission’s capital budget supports the Commission’s commitment to maintain the integrity and safety of its bridges, and includes the following:
- completion of the Tacony-Palmyra Bridge deck replacement
- replacement of the Riverside-Delanco Bridge deck,
- repairs to the Burlington-Bristol Bridge operating and machinery room
- safety enhancements to toll plaza and painting at both Commission bridges.
“The Commission’s budget reflects an investment in our historically significant bridges, and will provide jobs for our citizens struggling to find work in these hard economic times,” said Commissioner Troy E. Singleton.
The Burlington County Bridge Commission manages the Tacony-Palmyra and Burlington-Bristol Bridges, and through its economic development and improvement authority powers, assists Burlington County municipalities in economic development and community revitalization projects and extends pooled financing options to local governments and nonprofits in Burlington County. These initiatives have resulted in a savings of approximately $15.9 million dollars and more than $13.8 million dollars in grant monies for municipalities.
Burlco Awarded Prestigious Regional and Community Planning Achievement Award for Joint Land Use Study
The Burlington County Bridge Commission’s Economic Development department will receive PlanSmart NJ’s Regional and Community Planning Achievement Award for its work on the “Joint Land Use Study” of the Joint Base (McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst). The study was a collaborative project with Ocean County, a co-recipient of the award.
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Burlington County Freeholder Director Bruce Garganio said that the idea behind a Joint Land Use Study is to empower members of the local community to work with their neighboring military base so that together they can make decisions about how land will be used. Completed in April 2009, the Joint Land Use Study (JLUS) was an effort of what was then the County economic development department.
“It’s gratifying to be part of a successful shared services initiative of this magnitude,” said Garganio. “Moreover, it sets the stage for continuing cooperation between the counties, the towns, and the Joint Base, to ensure the base continues to provide a multi-million dollar economic impact to the region.”
“This initiative was truly a joint effort,” said John Comegno, Chairman of the Burlington County Bridge Commission. “The work of our economic development and regional planning staff was bolstered by contributions from the Joint Base and the municipalities that surround the base. That cooperative effort resulted in an award-worthy Joint Land Use Study.”
The PlanSmart NJ award will be presented at its annual dinner to be held November 8th in New Brunswick. An independent, nonprofit civic planning and research organization, PlanSmart NJ is committed to improving the quality of community life through the advancement of sound land use planning and regional cooperation. Every year, PlanSmart NJ honors key players with its Regional and Community Planning Achievement Award as well as awards for economic, environmental, resource efficiency, and regional equity achievement.
The JLUS was designed to encourage cooperative land use planning between military installations and the surrounding communities where civilian encroachment is likely to impair the operations of an installation. The study was conducted during the consolidation of the three separate military bases: McGuire Air Force Base, Fort Dix, and Lakehurst Naval Warfare Center.
“Even more important is the ongoing cooperation that the counties, municipalities, and the Joint Base exhibit in implementing the recommendations of the JLUS,” added Mark Remsa, Director of the Commission’s Department of Economic Development and Regional Planning.
The JLUS process encourages community decision-makers and military representatives to study issues of compatibility in an open forum, balancing both civilian and military interests.
The Burlington County communities that make up the JLUS area include New Hanover, North Hanover, Pemberton Borough, Pemberton Township, Springfield Township, and Wrightstown Borough.
Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst occupies lands within five of the Burlington County JLUS municipalities, with the exception of Pemberton Borough. McGuire AFB is located in New and North Hanover Townships, and in Wrightstown Borough. Fort Dix is located within New Hanover Township, Pemberton Township, Springfield Township, and Wrightstown Borough.
“Bringing Bald Eagle Back to NJ” Event at PCNP
Don’t miss this rare event November 7th at Palmyra Cove Nature Park, at which Amèlie Harris-McGeehan will discuss her role in the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s effort to reintroduce the bald eagle in habitats in our state. Part of the team that successfully launched a new era in New Jersey’s wildlife conservation, Amèlie will recall the challenges and triumphs of that experience.
Event starts at 7 PM and is free to PCNP members, $5 for non-members. Reserve your spot now by phone, (856) 829-1900, ext. 270, or by email, firstname.lastname@example.org.