TRENTON –Senator Nellie Pou was honored, along with Assemblywoman Nancy F. Munoz, with the Paul L. Troast Public Service Award by the New Jersey Business and Industry Association (NJBIA) at the 2021 NJBIA Public Policy Forum entitled “The Road to Recovery.” The NJBIA presents the award annually “to a public servant who has made an outstanding contribution to the State of New Jersey and its business community.”
Senator Pou, who serves as Chair of the Senate Commerce Committee, was singled out for her work in helping to secure emergency aid funds from a variety of federal and state sources to help bring relief to New Jersey businesses that faced dramatic downturns and financial distress during the worst days of the coronavirus pandemic. She understood, early on, just how important it was for New Jersey businesses of all shapes and sizes to stay open and remain viable, and be able to keep employees on the payroll.
“I must tell you what an honor it is to receive the Paul L. Troast Award, and to share it with Assemblywoman Munoz,” said Senator Pou (D-Bergen/Passaic). “I thank the NJBIA as well as President Michele S. Siekerka for all your tireless work in promoting and supporting our homegrown businesses, and giving them every chance to survive and thrive under these trying circumstances brought on by the pandemic.”
Relief-related policies and legislation Senator Pou has sponsored and supported over these last several months included than $420 million in aid distributed by the Economic Development Fund to more than 63,000 businesses across the state.
The Legislature has further supported these efforts – most notably through the passage of three separate bill packages to appropriate funding to EDA to support various industries. Among those industries receiving emergency support included microbusinesses, arts and culture organizations, food and beverage establishments, businesses and nonprofits, as well as child care providers.
“If the last two years have taught us anything, it is just how critical New Jersey businesses are to the everyday workings of our state, and how vital it is for those businesses to succeed under daunting conditions. New Jersey business owners represent the best of us. They are hard-working and resilient and I am confident they will continue to bounce back from the COVID pandemic and be more robust than ever.”
NJBIA is the nation’s largest statewide employer association. With 20,000 plus members it represents every industry in the state, including contractors, manufacturers, retail and wholesale businesses and services providers of every kind. Its members, as a group, employ more than one million people.