Salem County Board of Chosen Freeholders
94 Market Street. Salem, N.J. 08079
CONTACT: Deborah Turner-Fox, Clerk of the Board/Administrator
William Miller, Engineering X8544
September 29, 2003
SALEM COUNTY RAILROAD IMPROVEMENTS RECEIVE FUNDING
Freeholder Director Jack Kugler (l) receives a check at the Oldmans Trestle from State Director Andrew Law, NJ Rural Development.
Salem County has received a grant totaling $147,000 from he United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development Rural Business Development program. These monies will be utilized for a variety of railroad improvements, including repair of the Oldmans Trestle. The County is expected to spend nearly $500,000 for rail improvements in the next several years and is in the process of obtaining funding from other sources to complete the projects.
"The rail line plays a critical role in the business of several large employers in the County and we need to invest in its improvement," state Freeholder Director Jack Kugler. Derailments that have occurred in the past two years are blamed in part on the condition of the rail line, which some critics say has been allowed to deteriorate.
Earlier this year, the Freeholder Board signed a ten year contract with Southern Railroad Company of Willingboro. This contract provides the county with greater revenue for the line' and requires a more aggressive maintenance and repair schedule.
"An investment in this rail is aimed at insuring its viability now and well into the future." stated Kugler. Our investment will pay for itself in the economic development that is due to spur and the quality of service provided to its existing customers."