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Senator Weinberg And Dep Commissioner Jackson Announce $100,000 In Historic Preservation Aid For New Bridge Landing Park

RIVER EDGE – Senator Loretta Weinberg today joined with DEP Commissioner Lisa P. Jackson, Historic New Bridge Landing Commission Chairperson Robert Griffin and Bergen County Executive Dennis McNerney to announce $100,000 in funding that has been secured from the State’s FY 2007 budget to help cover the cost of historic preservation projects at New Bridge Landing Park.

“This funding will help pay for necessary assessments and repairs to New Bridge Landing Park, a historic area that served as the major road between New Jersey and Manhattan in the 1700’s,” said Senator Weinberg, D-Bergen, who was instrumental in securing the appropriation. “Because of the park’s location, it saw a lot of action during the American Revolution as George Washington led troops across the bridge to safety. Also, General Washington made the Steuben House his troop’s headquarters in September of 1780. It is only fitting that funds were secured to help maintain such an important piece of New Jersey’s history.”

Of the $9 million State appropriation earmarked for historic preservation projects throughout New Jersey, $100,000 will pay for an historic architectural assessment of the Steuben House, a historic landscape plan for Historic New Bridge Landing and an archaeological survey of the area.

“This work will guarantee that places such as New Bridge Landing Park and the Steuben House and all that they represent do not fade into history, but remain a vibrant reminder of the struggle to establish our nation,” Commissioner Jackson said.

The Historic New Bridge Landing Park Commission, established in 1995, coordinates the efforts of the NJDEP’s Division of Parks and Forestry, the County of Bergen, the Bergen County Historical Society, the Blauvelt-Demarest Foundation, River Edge Borough, New Milford Borough and Teaneck in preserving one of America’s most historic places.

“As one of the newly designated State Urban Parks, we are very pleased and proud to receive this further commitment to establishing Historic New Bridge Landing as a premier historic site in Bergen County,” said Commissioner Griffin.

During the news conference, the speakers also stressed the need for voter approval of Question #2, which will be on next Tuesday’s ballot, requesting a constitutional amendment that would provide a dedicated source of funding – $15 million a year until 2015 and $32 million annually beginning in 2016 – for maintenance and capital improvements at wildlife areas, historic sites and state parks. Approval of the constitutional amendment would allow revenues already generated through the Corporate Business Tax Fund to be used for maintenance and capital-improvement projects.

“Voter approval of Question #2 on November 7th ballot would appropriate necessary funding for historic site, state park and wildlife preservation, at no additional cost to taxpayers. It’s a win-win situation for everyone,” Senator Weinberg said.