Join Our Mailing List
Email:

News & Events

CtoCNJ in the News Upcoming CtoCNJ Events

Contact Us!

Ask CtoCNJ your questions and share your concerns.

Donate

Donations may be mailed to
PO Box 111, Gillette, NJ 07933

Be Part of CtoCNJ’s Success

* Donations are Tax Deductible

Spread the Word

Share

Connect With Us




Quotes

"There is a better, more intelligent, and less expensive way to provide local services, and we have it in our collective power to bring about changes for the better."

Alan J. Karcher,
Multiple Municipal Madness

Op-Eds

Will the Princetons be Trailblazers or Left Behind?

The residents of the Princetons have the opportunity to make history in New Jersey on Nov. 8 when they vote, once again, on the issue of consolidating Princeton Township and Princeton Borough.

In the next few weeks, the Princetons can become a model for the state, showing municipalities how to consolidate; from the earliest planning stages through implementation of a completed merger. The Princetons are poised to forever be known in New Jersey for their leadership and courage to connect.

These towns have been at it a long time. Through their previous three attempts at consolidation, laws have been changed and new policies have been created to address the residents’ concerns. These efforts have supported the growing municipal consolidation movement in New Jersey.

Just last week, Gov. Chris Christie threw his support behind municipal consolidation efforts, by proposing the state invest in helping towns merge, spreading the costs over five years with the state offering to pay for the first year’s expenses.

The Princeton Consolidation Commission has recommended consolidation. They based their decision on the comprehensive consolidation study which estimated that the initial average savings would range from $200 to $240 per household. The savings are expected to increase to $400 to $500 over the next three years as redundant staff positions are combined and extra assets are sold or re-utilized.

To continue reading this article, click here

 

Share

What New Jersey really needs is a consolidation “tool kit”

On Feb. 17, the state Senate took a big step toward reforming our fragmented system of local government. Let’s hope this is the just the beginning.

For more than a century, state lawmakers have been promoting municipal consolidation as a way to cut waste, reduce inefficiency and lower local property taxes. But none of the policies designed to make consolidation easier ever really worked and, since 1952, only a single pair of towns have merged.

At Courage to Connect New Jersey — the only nonpartisan organization that focuses exclusively on encouraging municipal mergers — we have watched numerous towns try to consolidate, only to see them stumble on unexpected obstacles.

Now, against the backdrop of a financial crisis and Gov. Chris Christie’s new 2 percent property tax cap, things are finally changing. Lawmakers realize that consolidation may well be the only way to prevent some communities from declaring bankruptcy. And so, policymakers are preparing legislation that eliminates some of the remaining barriers to town mergers.

On Feb. 17, the Senate unanimously passed S-2465, which gives voters new power to initiate consolidations even when local elected officials balk. In those cases, the law would allow one town’s governing council to partner with a neighboring town’s voters to create a consolidation “study commission.” Thanks to the tireless advocacy of Senate co-sponsors Robert Gordon and James Beach, as well as Senate President Stephen Sweeney, the bill has sailed through the Legislature.

Continue reading this article in the Asbury Park Press or download a full PDF here

Share

N.J. needs a consolidation ‘tool kit’

On Feb. 17, the State Senate took a big step toward reforming our fragmented system of local government. Let’s hope this is the just the beginning.

For more than a century, state lawmakers have been promoting municipal consolidation as a way to cut waste, reduce inefficiency and lower local property taxes. But none of the policies designed to make consolidation easier ever really worked and, since 1952, only a single pair of towns have merged.

At Courage to Connect New Jersey — the only nonpartisan organization that focuses exclusively on encouraging municipal mergers — we have watched numerous towns try to consolidate, only to see them stumble on unexpected obstacles.

Now, against the backdrop of a financial crisis and Gov. Chris Christie’s new 2 percent property tax cap, things are finally changing. Lawmakers realize that consolidation may well be the only way to prevent some communities from declaring bankruptcy. And so policymakers are preparing legislation that eliminates some of the remaining barriers to town mergers.

On Feb. 17, the Senate unanimously passed S-2465, which gives voters new power to initiate consolidations even when local elected officials balk. In those cases, the law would allow one town’s governing council to partner with a neighboring town’s voters to create a consolidation “study commission.” Thanks to the tireless advocacy of Senate co-sponsors Robert Gordon and James Beach, as well as Senate President Stephen Sweeney, the bill has sailed through the Legislature.

Continue reading this article in the Daily Record or download a full PDF here

Share

Courage to Connect NJ Research Director pens leading op-ed in today’s Star-Ledger

Courage to Connect NJ Research Director Andrew Bruck

For years, New Jersey’s towns have been struggling to stay afloat, and they’re about to get hit with a tidal wave. The real question is whether the state Legislature will throw them a lifeline.

Local officials are starting to prepare their annual budgets — the first since Gov. Chris Christie imposed his 2 percent property tax cap — and it’s clear that dramatic changes are near. Some communities will find the only way to avoid bankruptcy is to eliminate their local administration and merge with neighboring towns.

It is well-documented that the Garden State has too much local government. With 566 municipalities crammed between the Hudson and the Delaware, New Jersey has more towns than California and more towns per capita than any other state in the country. This fractured system leads to redundancy, waste and — ultimately — sky-high property taxes.

For more than a century, state lawmakers have been talking about ways to encourage municipal consolidation. Yet since 1952, just one pair of towns has merged.

At Courage to Connect New Jersey, a nonpartisan organization that focuses on encouraging municipal mergers, we have watched numerous towns try to consolidate, only to see them stumble on unexpected roadblocks.

With the state on the brink of bankruptcy, the Legislature must pass a “consolidation toolkit” to make it easier for towns to join together.

Continue reading this article in The Star-Ledger or download the full PDF here

Share

News & Videos


Visit CTCNJ on YouTube


Chad Goerner interview on NJTV:




Gina shares insights on NJTV:




Princeton's new Mayor Liz Lempert addresses the community:

Mayor Liz Lempert Video (click image to watch on nj.com; video is below slideshow)


Princeton Township Mayor Chad Goerner featured on NJTV:




Executive Director of CtoCNJ Discusses Consolidation on NJTV:

NJToday
(click image to watch on PBS.org)


WMBC Introduces CtoCNJ:




WMBC Continues the Conversation:




CtoCNJ on NJN:




Gina on NJN:




Fox News 29 in Cinnaminson:




CNBC in Woodbridge:




Gina's "Can NJ Connect?" video:




Abbott and Costello take a humorous look at what we don’t know about our own communities: