FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 25, 2009



“Greening Union County” program


Elizabeth, NJ – With the fall tree planting season just around the corner, the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders is once again distributing “buy one, get one” matching grants designed to double the number of new trees planted by municipalities.  The grant program, called Greening Union County, has resulted in the planting of well over 5,000 new trees since it began in 2004.

“Street trees are widely recognized as a low tech, low cost way to enhance the quality of life in our communities and help improve public health,” said Freeholder Chairman Alexander Mirabella.  “They provide much-needed shade while absorbing dust and airborne pollutants.  Over the past five years this relatively modestly initiative has created a long lasting positive impact on Union County neighborhoods.”

This year, eleven municipalities are participating in Greening Union County: Berkeley Heights, Elizabeth, Fanwood, Hillside, Kenilworth, Linden, Plainfield, Rahway, Springfield, Summit, and Union.  They will be planting a total of 669 trees.

The municipalities are putting up half the cost, or $54,880, and the Union County Open Space, Recreation and Historic Preservation Trust Fund is providing the other half.

The Open Space, Recreation and Historic Preservation Trust Fund was established by popular referendum in 2000.  It provides funds to protect open space, improve parks and recreational facilities, and preserve historic treasures.