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Gov. Murphy signs legislation to award schools with Securing Our Children’s Future Bond Act grants

$317.2 million in awards will be granted in the initial round of SOCFBA

NEW JERSEY – Governor Phil Murphy signed legislation to award school districts and county colleges with grants through the Securing Our Children’s Future Bond Act (SOCFBA). The grants will fund school security, water infrastructure improvements, and enhancement of career and technical education (CTE) in county vocational-technical school districts and county colleges

The first round of grants, which the Governor transmitted to the Legislature for approval in May, will total $317.2 million and be distributed by the New Jersey Department of Education (DOE) and the Office of the Secretary of Higher Education (OSHE). Funds will be disbursed on a rolling basis contingent on final grant revisions and recipient submissions of reimbursement requests.

The SOCFBA is supported by $500 million in bonds approved by New Jersey voters in November 2018. Second-round details and applications will be announced at a later date.

“We must ensure a safe and high-quality educational experience for students across our state,” Murphy said. “These projects will help our school districts and institutions of higher education keep students safe and healthy, while also ensuring that they are ready for the careers of future.”

“This is an investment that will benefit students throughout the state,” said Dr. Angelica Allen-McMillan, Acting Commissioner of Education. “It will lead to safer school facilities, ensure clean water, and help county vocational-technical schools grow programs to provide career readiness skills that students need.”

“One of our Higher Education State Plan goals is for every student to have high-quality, career-relevant academic programs that prepare them for success. That is exactly what this funding will be used for: enhancing access to experiential learning opportunities at our state’s county colleges that will equip students with in-demand skills needed to compete in a competitive job market,” said Higher Education Secretary Dr. Brian Bridges. “These critical projects and investments will help prepare today’s students for in-demand, high-paying careers needed to enhance New Jersey’s economic success.”

Governor Murphy signed the following:

A-5886/S-3959 (Caputo, Stanley, Reynolds-Jackson, Moen/Addiego, Turner): Appropriates $66,173,243 for School Security Projects

The SOCFBA allocated funds for the installation of silent panic alarms to alert law enforcement during an emergency as required by Alyssa’s Law, and for other school security upgrades. Other school security upgrades include exterior lighting improvements, surveillance cameras, intercoms, remote locking/unlocking doors, shatter-resistant glass, signage improvements, generator installation, and impact-rated vehicle barriers.

The first round of the SOCFBA will fund 494 proposed projects. These grants will be administered by the DOE.

For the list of round-one projects in this category, click here.

A-5887/S-3960 (Benson, Jimenez, Taliaferro, Calabrese/Cunningham, Turner): Appropriates $6,608,212 for Water Infrastructure Projects

The SOCFBA allocated funds for the construction, reconstruction, repair, rehabilitation, or replacement of water supply infrastructure in K-12 schools.

The first round of the SOCFBA will fund 26 proposed projects. These grants will be administered by the DOE. The second round of grant funding will be issued following lead testing results required during the 2021-2022 school year.

For the list of round-one projects in this category, click here.

A-5888/S-3961 (DeAngelo, Armato, Quijano, McKnight/Cunningham, Ruiz): Appropriates $26,456,996 for County College CTE Projects

The SOCFBA allocated funds for county colleges to construct or expand classrooms, laboratories, libraries, computer facilities, and other academic structures to increase CTE program capacity.

For the list of round-one projects in this category, click here.

A-5889/S-3962 (Mazzeo, Zwicker, Johnson, Lopez, Wimberly/Sweeney, Turner, Ruiz): Appropriates $222,904,769 for County Vocational School District CTE Projects

The SOCFBA allocated funds for construction projects that support CTE program expansion for County Vocational School Districts (CVSD). These projects will fund renovation and new construction to increase student capacity in select county vocational CTE programs, including related demolition, site improvements and physical plant upgrades, and furniture and equipment in renovated, reassigned, or new spaces related to county vocational CTE program expansion. Applicants were required to demonstrate that new student seats would be in county vocational CTE programs that prepare students for high-demand, technically skilled careers.

The first round of the SOCFBA will fund 17 proposed projects. These grants will be administered by DOE.

For the list of round-one projects in this category, click here.

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

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