Assembly Panel Advances Bill To Encourage Police, Firefighters, Teachers And Sanitation Workers To Buy Homes in Towns Where They Work

Legislation to provide financial assistance for qualified police officers, firefighters, public school teachers and sanitation workers to purchase homes in communities where they work was advanced yesterday by an Assembly panel. The bill was sponsored by Assemblyman Reed Gusciora (D-Mercer/Hunterdon).

“There is an advantage to having police officers, firefighters, teachers and sanitation workers living in the communities they serve. We have very dedicated public employees, but the commitment is even greater when your work directly impacts the neighborhood where you live and raise your family,” said Gusciora. “Providing a financial incentive will encourage more of our public servants to live in the communities where they work, which benefits not just those communities, but the state as a whole.”

The bill would establish the “Police Officer, Firefighter, Public School Teacher and Sanitation Worker Home-buyer Assistance Act.” The purpose of the program is to offer down-payment assistance to encourage qualified police officers, firefighters, public school teachers and sanitation workers to purchase residential property in specially designated neighborhoods of eligible municipalities where they work.

Current state law does not require teachers, police and firefighters to live in the communities they serve. Municipalities that are coextensive with an “Abbott” school district would be eligible to participate. The New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency would administer the program.

Down-payment assistance would be in the form of zero percent interest rate second mortgage loans of $10,000. Under the program, the applicant would be required to make a home purchased with program assistance his or her primary residence for at least five years. Down-payment loans would be forgiven at a rate of 20 percent a year for five years. The unforgiven balance would become due and payable if an employee sells the property or ceases to occupy it as a primary residence.

“For many first-time buyers, purchasing a home can be a costly investment. This bill provides an opportunity for police officers, firefighter, teachers and sanitation workers who want to purchase a home, but don’t have enough for a down payment, to buy their own piece of the American dream,” said Gusciora.

Eligible municipalities can participate in the program by adopting an ordinance. The ordinance would designate municipal neighborhoods where the program would be applicable, and identify a municipal official to assist applicants with the application process. The ordinance could limit eligibility to qualified applicants who have been employed by the eligible municipality or by a school district in the eligible municipality for more than a specified number of years. Otherwise, an employee would be required to have at least one year of creditable service as a member of the applicable pension system.

The bill would appropriate $5 million from the General Fund to the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency for program purposes.

The bill was released by the Assembly Housing and Local Government Committee. TLS.

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  1. No one with children will move to Lakewood especially with the messed up school system it has. Well maybe if the homes are free and the taxes are cut in half then maybe!

  2. The rest of us, meanwhile, can go fly a kite.

    This is just another Democrat giveaway to the public sector unions.

    Does anyone get it? On the face of it, it seems like such a great idea! But if you just think about it with an open mind, its nothing more than another liberal Democrat party attempt to take money from the rest of us and give it to theri public sector union buddies.

    My taxes will go up, so that each public sector union employee can get another $10,000 of our hard earned money.

    If you really want to solve the issue of fire and police etc. not living in their own communities, why don’t you just simply pass a law that each town must hire only their own residents.

    Oh, because the unions won’t let. Silly me.

  3. Hey #4….WAAAAAAAAAHHHH…would you like some kleenex???…why don’t you go do the job that our police and fire does…, why don’t you chase an armed criminal down east 4th st at 3am…oh, that’s right, you would be running the other way…instead of whining, why not thank them for the job they do

  4. I’m so sick of hearing about taxes going up on every item written about something that could be good. Stop building on to your homes and leave some land so there is trees for people to enjoy.. We need spce to enjoy our town.

  5. #5 – “WAAAAAAAAAHHHH…would you like some kleenex???…why don’t you go do the job that our police and fire does” – Stop whining

    – YID never questioned the job the brave officers & firemen do. he never downplayed their roll in our community. he never belittled the danger these men & women face every day.

    (does that make sense now? if not re-read my post a few more times until it makes sense)

  6. The reason taxes in Lakewood are going up is because so many people don’t pay taxes, taxibles in the industrial park are going away because of all the schools and no township can afford to bus the amount of children Lakewood has.

  7. hey mr. conservative, why dont you pass some of your kleenex onto yid, cause you whine just as much. he didnt say anything about votes. he is whining that union members (police,fire) are getting funding to live in the town they work.

    stop your whining too!!!


  8. i only make $34,900. I can’t afford a house in Lakewood. Oh yeah and i have to pay for my medical benefits too! So go ahead and tell me how great I got it. Wait I can’t hear u, cause I’m at my second fulltime job.

Comments are closed.