House Approves $300,000 for Covenant House New Jersey
U.S. Representative Frank A. LoBiondo (NJ-02) announced that the House of Representatives has approved its Fiscal Year 2008 Commerce-Justice-Science Appropriations bill (H.R.3093) containing $300,000 in federal funding for Covenant House New Jersey, which has a facility in Atlantic City. This funding will be used by the non-profit to expand their "Rights of Passage Program" which provides at-risk and homeless youth with educational and job-training skills necessary to gain employment.
"Covenant House does an extraordinary job of helping the most vulnerable in our society to go from homelessness to a life of independence," said LoBiondo. "The commitment and dedication by the staff and volunteers to help our young people break the cycle of poverty should serve as a model to us all. I am pleased to see these new funds help them continue their good work, and will continue advocating for additional federal support on their behalf."
The Rights of Passage program is a transitional living program that provides care and support to severely disadvantaged (homeless) young men and women. Established in 1994, the program provides a connection to medical care, legal services, addictions management, career development and education for these at-risk individuals. Previously, LoBiondo was instrumental in securing $450,000 in federal funding to build the current Covenant House facility, which is home to the Rights of Passage Program. The previous building was in severe disrepair and no longer safe for young people to gather.
Additionally, the House-passed annual spending bill also includes $450,000 in federal funding for the DUNE system assessment and shoreline change analysis program currently being conducted at the Richard Stockton College in Pomona. Since 1986, the research program has assessed the susceptibility of developed areas on the Jersey shore to coastal storm damage and erosion through tracking cumulative changes in dune width/height, beach elevation and width, and the proximity of development to the water's edge.
"Every shore or bay community in southern New Jersey can attest to the critical importance of ongoing efforts to combat coastal erosion. The research being conducted by the Richard Stockton College is a vital resource for our greater understanding of the success of current efforts to stave off erosion, and helps us determine the best way to approach this real issue in the future," said LoBiondo.
"These funds are vital in Stockton's research and work to monitor the condition of one of New Jersey's most precious resources: its shoreline. Our beaches are major attractions of the state's thriving tourism industry and part of the quality of life we enjoy. We are grateful for Congressman LoBiondo's efforts," said Dr. Herman Saatkamp Jr., President of the Richard Stockton College.
The House-passed Fiscal Year 2008 Commerce-Justice-Science Appropriations bill, which was approved 281 to 142, is now pending in the Senate.