New Jersey DEP awards record grants
The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
(DEP) is providing New Jersey’s municipalities and counties
a record $14.5 million in grants to boost local recycling
efforts, Department of Environmental Protection Acting
Commissioner Mark N. Mauriello announced.
“These grants will be of great help to local governments
that want to keep doing the right thing for the environment
by maintaining strong recycling programs,” Commissioner
Mauriello said. “Local governments will use this money
to help pay recycling coordinators who quarterback these
efforts, fund public education campaigns, and make sure
residents continue to comply with recycling laws.”
The $14.5 million in recycling tonnage grants is nearly
double the previous record of 2008, when $8 million was
awarded as the result of the implementation of the Recycling
Enhancement Act, signed into law by Governor Jon S. Corzine
that year to help New Jersey reach its recycling-rate
targets. This year’s total is also nearly three times
higher than the pre-Recycling Enhancement Act high of
$5.5 million awarded in 1995.
The Recycling Enhancement Act significantly increased
the amount of grant money available to local governments
by creating a recycling enhancement fund through a $3
per ton surcharge on trash taken to solid-waste disposal
Municipal governments, vital to the overall success of
recycling, receive 60 percent of the money the fund generates
to help them enhance outreach and compliance efforts.
The balance is awarded to county solid-waste management
and household hazardous-waste collection programs, county
and state promotional efforts, and recycling research.
The individual grant awards for this year are based on
the amount of materials municipalities and counties recycled
in 2007, the year before the Recycling Enhancement Act
New Jersey recycled 3.8 million tons of 10.5 million
tons of municipal solid waste generated in 2007, for
a municipal solid waste recycling rate of 36.5 percent.
Materials recycled as part of municipal programs includes
paper, cardboard, glass, metal cans and plastic.