March 10, 2011; Source: nj.com | A new state law in New Jersey will allow nonprofits to buy abandoned properties to turn them into venues for economic development – and, in particular, into urban farms. Abandoned lots have long presented a problem for neighborhoods across New Jersey, acting as a deterrent to neighborhood revitalization. The law provides that “the transformation of excess vacant public lands into vibrant urban farms is a public purpose…and affords these lands exemptions from property taxation”. Says a legislator from Salem, “Urban gardens can help build small businesses, create jobs and turn unproductive properties into centerpieces for an economic revival.”—Ruth McCambridge
About The Author
Ruth is Editor in Chief of the Nonprofit Quarterly. Her background includes forty-five years of experience in nonprofits, primarily in organizations that mix grassroots community work with policy change. Beginning in the mid-1980s, Ruth spent a decade at the Boston Foundation, developing and implementing capacity building programs and advocating for grantmaking attention to constituent involvement.