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Sen. Bob Menendez. (Photo: Kevin Sanders for New Jersey Globe)

More than $10 billion in federal aid headed New Jersey’s way

State gets a $6.4 billion windfall, with $1.8 billion for counties and $1.7 billion for local governments

By Nikita Biryukov, March 10 2021 9:53 am

New Jersey will receive more than $10 billion in direct aid under the latest COVID-19 relief bill, Sens. Bob Menendez (D-North Bergen) and Cory Booker (D-Newark) announced Wednesday.

The state itself will receive a little more than $6.4 billion in direct aid under the $1.9 trillion relief package. Counties will be awarded about $1.8 billion under the bill, and local governments will receive $1.7 billion.

“This badly needed federal funding will not just keep the lights on at City Hall, it will also help our communities get more vaccines in people’s arms, keep our first responders, teachers and other essential workers on the job, maintain our infrastructure and critical services, help our small businesses stay afloat, and put us on a smoother path towards economic recovery after the pandemic,” Menendez said.

At nearly $464 million, Essex County’s award will be the largest among the counties, though Hudson will receive a similarly generous $425 million, while Bergen county’s government will get $351 million in aid.

Much of that money — $309 million for Essex, $294 million for Hudson, and $92 million for Bergen — will go to towns and cities in those counties.

Salem County’s award is the smallest of any county in the state. It’ll get just $18 million under the relief bill, and about $6 million of those funds is headed to municipal governments. Salem is the state’s least-populous county by far, with a population about the same as in Old Bridge, which will receive about $6.8 million from the $282 million appropriated to Middlesex County.

“With state and local governments across our country facing the painful decisions of potentially laying off thousands of police officers, firefighters, teachers, and other essential workers, and cutting essential services, the full support of our federal government has never been more important to fight this pandemic,” Booker said. “The federal funding in this COVID relief package will help provide the relief that New Jerseyans desperately need, and I was proud to work with Senator Menendez in getting it across the finish line.”

New Jersey’s largest cities will see sizeable aid under the plan. Newark will get almost $183 million. Jersey City will be awarded almost $146 million, while Camden will get $63 million, and Paterson will get a little less than $64 million.

“This was a long and hard-fought battle, but I am pleased to be able to deliver in this COVID relief package billions in direct, flexible federal assistance to each and every corner of New Jersey,” Menendez said.

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