Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey Invests $1 Million in Urban Centers Through New Jersey State Department of Community Affairs Tax Credit Program

NEWARK - "We live here too," is a saying that is common at Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, (Horizon BCBSNJ). That is why Horizon BCBSNJ is investing $1 million into New Jersey communities through the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs' (DCA) Neighborhood Revitalization Tax Credit (NRTC) Program.

Horizon BCBSNJ is investing in the following projects through the NRTC program:

  • Cooper Health System - Clean and Safe Program - $143,656

$143,656 will be used to help keep the sidewalks and parks around Cooper Health System in Camden clean and graffiti-free. Other NRTC activities include building nine affordable homeownership units, refurbishing house facades, improving the parking lot of a social-services provider, and installing artwork in a park.

  • Heart of Camden - Neighborhood Community Center   - $250,000

$250,000 will be used for the conversion of the former Star Theater into a community center in the Waterford South neighborhood of Camden. The center will include a full-sized indoor basketball court with bleachers and will provide much-needed recreation space for the neighborhood, especially its young residents.

  • Lincoln Park Coast Cultural District - Historic South Park Church - $456,344 

$456,344 will be used to restore the façade of South Park Presbyterian Church, a historic landmark in Newark’s Lincoln Park neighborhood that was severely damaged by a 1992 fire. The restored façade will be a significant presence in the revitalized Lincoln Park neighborhood.

  • WomenRising Mixed Use Development and Job Bank - $150,000

$150,000 will be used toward construction of a ground floor supermarket on Monticello Avenue in Jersey City's Bergen Hill neighborhood. The supermarket is part of a five-story, mixed-use building to be constructed by a private developer. The new supermarket is expected to create jobs. Also, a job bank and information clearinghouse will be established by WomenRising at a separate location to benefit local residents.

"Horizon BCBSNJ has a strong record of community support and providing needed assistance for these projects will help improve the economic climate in these areas," said William J. Marino, Chairman and CEO of Horizon BCBSNJ. "We commend the Department of Community Affairs for giving us the opportunity to take part in this innovative program."

"The Neighborhood Revitalization Tax Credit Program provides a wonderful opportunity for government, private businesses and nonprofit groups to work together to help New Jersey's distressed neighborhoods get back on track," said Acting DCA Commissioner Lori Grifa. "Successfully addressing the challenges found in these communities and building pride among the people who live and work there requires collective action. Governor Christie and I applaud Horizon BCBSNJ and the four partnering nonprofit organizations for doing their part to invest in New Jersey urban centers such as Camden, Newark and Jersey City."

The NRTC program provides business entities a 100 percent tax credit for funds provided to nonprofit entities carrying out comprehensive revitalization plans. Nonprofit entities must use at least 60% of the tax credit funds for housing and economic development; the remaining funds may be used for supportive services and other neighborhood improvements. For more information about the NRTC program, log on to http://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dhcr/offices/nrtc.html.

About Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, the state's oldest and largest health insurer, is a not-for-profit health services corporation. Horizon BCBSNJ serves over 3.6 million members and is headquartered in Newark with offices in Wall, Mt. Laurel, and West Trenton.

Horizon BCBSNJ provides a wide variety of health and dental insurance products and services, including Medicare and Medicaid products, for businesses and individuals. Horizon BCBSNJ is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. Learn more at www.HorizonBlue.com.

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