Press Release

For Immediate Release: April 28, 2017

“Senior Focus” Grants totaling $430,000 Awarded to 18 Municipalities

The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders is pleased to announce  that 18 Union County municipalities have been awarded “Senior Focus” grants. Designed to support the well-being, safety and quality of life for senior adults in Union County, “Senior Focus” funding may be used for repairs and rehabilitation of senior center facilities or equipment for the centers.

“The senior population of Union County is growing, and with ‘Senior Focus’ we demonstrate our commitment to ensuring that local communities have the resources to continue improving their facilities, programs and services for seniors,” said Freeholder Chairman Bruce Bergen.

“This initiative is intended to support our senior adults and provide access to services that impact their quality of life,” said Freeholder Bette Jane Kowalski, liaison to the Human Services Advisory Board.

The“Senior Focus” grant made available awards of up to $25,000 to each of Union County’s 21 municipalities for capital improvements or equipment purchases to enhance their local senior center facilities. Qualifying centers must be owned by the municipality and used exclusively or primarily as a senior center. 

Examples of improvements covered under the grant include ADA access improvements, repairs to or replacement the roof, plumbing and electrical upgrades, and site improvements.

In addition to capital projects, examples of acceptable equipment purchases could include computers/printers, stereos and headphones, and PA systems. The grant program was funded through a combination of County Capital and CDBG funds.

Offered as part of Chairman Bergen’s “Year of the Senior” 2016 initiatives, the new “Senior Focus” program (the last one was offered in 2002) complemented the recently completed “Seniors in Motion” program, which provided vans for senior transportation to the County’s municipalities.

Here is a list of towns that are receiving the grants, and what the money will be used for:

MunicipalityAmountProjected Project
Clark$25,000Senior Fitness Equipment
Cranford$18,462Bingo System, PA System and 8 Surface Pro Computers
Elizabeth$24,29327 Computers
Fanwood$25,000Roof, Windows, Window Coverings, PA System, iPad, Microwave
Garwood$25,000Roof Repair and PA System
Hillside$25,000Exterior Repairs Replace Handicap Ramp
Kenilworth$23,4004 doors Retrofit 2 doors Replaced
Linden$24,000Ramp Update, Automatic Doors
Mountainside$25,000Flooring, Seating, Computer, TV
New Providence$15,500100 Chairs, 8 Club Chairs, PA System, Copier
Plainfield$25,000Senior Fitness Equipment, Flooring, Sewing machines
Rahway$25,000Roof
Roselle$25,000Lavatory Upgrades, Parking Lot Lighting, Ice Maker, Ceiling Tiles
Roselle Park$25,000Roof
Scotch Plains$25,000Bocce Court, Outdoor Seating, PA System, Ceiling Tiles, Chairs, Fitness Equipment, Signage, Tables
Springfield$25,000Fitness Equipment, Audio Visual Equipment, Computers
Summit$25,000Senior Lounge
Union$25,000Senior Center Roof
Total$430,655
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