FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, May 6, 2019

Program Seeks to Strengthen the Economic Vigor of Threatened but Viable Neighborhoods in New Jersey

TRENTON, NJ – Recognizing the critical role neighborhoods play in the lives of New Jersey residents, the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) has revived the Neighborhood Preservation Program (NPP), which is designed to strengthen the economic health of threatened but viable neighborhoods in the state and to encourage private investment in these communities. The program focuses on revitalizing neighborhoods through local planning and community participation and building local capacity and coordination to maximize grant funding and get the work done. 

“Governor Murphy and I recently committed $2.5 million in funding to restore the Neighborhood Preservation Program because it is a proven game changer for communities,” said Lt. Governor Sheila Y. Oliver, who also serves as DCA Commissioner. “Municipalities can use the grant funding to create places filled with energy and ambience that draw people to live, work, and visit. The program is all about helping communities get creative in pursuing economic development that makes sense for them.”

To be eligible to apply, municipalities must be between the 64th and 98th percentiles on the Municipal Revitalization Index (MRI), which is the State’s official ranking of municipal distress according to eight indicators that measure diverse aspects of social, economic, physical, and fiscal conditions in each locality. The MRI can be found at Also, municipalities must have at least one neighborhood (census tract) that has been struggling with housing vacancies, home values, jobs, and poverty, among other eligibility criteria.

Municipalities have until May 15, 2019 to apply for grant funds.

DCA anticipates awarding $125,000 grants to between 18 and 20 municipalities. 

To maximize the impact of the NPP investment, municipalities will be required to show a commitment of resources from the neighborhood and municipality, as well as support from community organizations and residents. DCA also encourages applications from municipalities that are participating in other state or federal programs, including designation as a Neighborhood Revitalization Tax Credit (NRTC) neighborhood, Opportunity Zone, Main Street New Jersey district, Transit Village, Urban Enterprise Zone, or other relevant designations.

The program strives to be flexible in terms of how municipalities can use grant funds. Eligible activities include community development planning, commercial retail and residential property renovations, code enforcement, historic preservation, support of community/neighborhood organizations, and public facilities improvement.

NPP also aims to serve as a platform for a variety of state investments in neighborhoods. By working with other state agencies and stakeholders, the program can lead the coordination of these investments toward a common goal of building strong and vibrant neighborhoods.

For more information on NPP, visit

DCA offers a wide range of programs and services, including energy assistance, housing vouchers, affordable housing production, fire and building safety, community planning and development, local government management and finance, and disaster recovery.

 For more information about DCA, visit or follow the Department on social media:        

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Lisa Ryan
Tammori Petty
Gina Trish
(609) 292-6055