Friend in Government

Harnessing E-vision

Funds Available: Housing

Corrections or additions?

Published in U.S. 1 Newspaper on April 5, 2000. All rights reserved.

Housing Helper: Trenton

Rebuilding Trenton is no longer just the business of

its residents. With a massive shortage of housing in central New Jersey

and the growing problem of sprawl, the outlying towns have a vested

interest in making Trenton an attractive place to live, says Martin

Johnson, director of Isles, the non-profit that seeks to foster

more self-sufficient families and sustainable communities through

urban housing, agriculture, and job training.

"People are tired of congestion, traffic, long lines, and destroyed

vistas," he says, "and increasingly wondering why development

isn’t happening where there’s already an infrastructure. It’s becoming

clear that long-term vision for healthy communities has to move outside

the geographic boundaries of municipal lines. Decisions are being

made in the town next door that have a direct impact on us, and sustainability

in our communities is jeopardized."

Johnson will speak at Regional Planning Partnership Thursday, April

6, at 8:30 a.m. at the Trenton Club. Also participating: author David

Rusk; Doug Palmer, mayor Trenton; Lou Gambaccini of

the Transportation Policy Institute; and William Watson of the

John S. Watson Institute of Public Policy. Call 609-393-5656.

The meeting will draw on ideas that Rusk outlines in his book, "Inside

Game/Outside Game." Rusk has looked at the connection between

a region’s health and the urban core. "He has in effect said that

when urban areas reach a certain level of distress, they reach a point

of no return unless the surrounding region steps up to help solve

the problems," says Johnson, who founded Isles while a student

at Princeton University, Class of 1981. "The premise is that city

organizations can’t just focus on the city’s health without engaging

the region."

Even while housing prices in surrounding areas soar, Trenton’s housing

costs remain relatively low. According to the April New Jersey Monthly

home cost survey, the average 1999 sale price in Trenton was $73,000

— one of the lowest in the state. Isles programs have focused

on creating quality affordable housing in Trenton that incorporates

open space, opportunities for agriculture, as well as benefits for

first-time homeowner.

"For us sustainability is the ability to develop without damaging

opportunities for future generations," says Johnson. "The

bottom line is that Trenton can’t sustain all the growth that the

region has projected in the next 20 years. There’s not enough space

here for that, but we do have to be a part of the solution. While

we purchase and set aside open space, we also have to create quality

developments where people want to be. Our mission is to display how

denser developments can be exciting, great places to live. If we continue

the sprawl, we will eliminate the majority of our open space."

April 6

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Friend in Government

Your friend in government in Mercer County, is Dennis

Kinney, who is the new Business Services Representative (BSR) for

state government and will act as the "single point of contact"

for information on government services. "Make one call to your

BSR," says Kinney, "and we will handle your request and make

all the necessary contacts for you."

If you are a member of the Princeton Chamber, you probably received

a letter from him last week. You can meet Kinney when he attends the

chamber’s luncheon on Thursday, April 6, at 11:30 a.m. at the Doral

Forrestal. The main speaker on this program is Calvin Iszard

of Bell Atlantic, who will explain just how the Workforce Investment

Board (WIB) can help employers recruit staff. Also making short presentations

will be Robert Murray of RPB Management at Research Park, who

chairs the new workforce development committee at the chamber, and

Herb Greenberg, CEO of Caliper (U.S. 1, March 29). Cost: $30.

Call 609-520-1776.

Kathy Wierzbicki, Kinney’s predecessor, has been promoted to

program manager. Kinney’s opposite number for Middlesex County is

Doreen Torrey at the East Brunswick Regional Chamber (732-698-2138)

and in Somerset County it is Eddy Mayen (908-203-1597). Reach

Kinney at 609-777-4512 or E-mail:

A Bucks County native, Kinney was the manager of the Raven restaurant

in New Hope and is most enthusiastic about his new job, the result

of a joint initiative between the labor and human services departments.

"I wanted to venture out to something different, and with this

job I can help get people off of welfare and back to work." His

training in customer service, he believes, will stand him in good


Among the programs that he wants to bring to the attention of employers:

the state’s customized training grants. "It is a major benefit

to the company to have some sort of funding to retrain and upgrade

the skills of the workers." He will also have information on Work

First New Jersey (welfare to the workforce), On the Job Training Grants,

and Work Opportunity Tax Credits, and the job posting website WNJPIN

( "Our purpose is to make state government

more `user friendly’ for the business community," says Kinney.

Friday, April 7

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Harnessing E-vision

Learn about E-commerce and Enterprise Resource Planning

or nominate your webmaster for an award, all through Technology New


"Turning Your E-vision into a Competitive Advantage" is the

topic for Dave Rizzo, CEO of Osprey ( Rizzo

gives the keynote for the E-Commerce and ERP conference and expo,

entitled "Building the Foundation for the New Millennium,"

for Technology New Jersey on Friday, April 7, from 8 a.m. to 5:30

p.m. at the Newark Marriott. Cost: $179. Call 609-419-4444 or go to

Other presenters include Mark Rhoney, president of UPS e-Ventures,

who speaks on "Helping put the E in Business;" Jonathan

Lofton of Supply Chain Excellence/Lucent Technologies on "Transforming

Legacy ERP to Support E-supply chain and E-business initiatives;"

Gordy Smouther of PSE&G on "E-procurement: extending the

value of SAP;" Mark Goebel of Hoffmann-LaRoche on "E-commerce

in the Corporate Infrastructure;" and Jim Katzenberger of

Bristlecone ( on "From ERP to E-business: Why Should

We make the Shift, and What Challenges Will We Face?"

Also "Enterprise Decision Support — Sourcing from SAP R/3,"

by Karl Kaeten of Informatica (; "E-business

and the Vision of the Future," by Mark Peterson of J.D.Edwards

(; "Warner-Lambert’s E-commerce within Global

Sourcing" by Srinivas Ragan of PriceWaterhouseCoopers (consultant

for Warner-Lambert); and "Next Generation ERP and E-commerce"

by Frank Meyers of Osprey.

Exhibitors and their websites also include,

Applied Tactical Systems (,,,

Computer Generated Solutions (,,,,,,,,,,,,,

Nomination forms for TNJ’s Internet awards can be submitted until

Monday, May 1. Awards will be presented at an E-Commerce conference

and expo on Thursday, June 1, at the Sheraton Newark Airport Hotel.

The Internet Innovator Award recognizes the most influential Internet

commerce leaders in New Jersey. Only a specific individual can be

nominated. The Internet Excellence Awards, however, could include

teams, companies, and organizations that have created and implemented

a leading edge Web site or E-commerce site.

April 7

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Funds Available: Housing

Those with an annual household income of below $28,000

may apply for Habitat Partnership housing in South Trenton. Applicants

must contribute sweat equity (500 hours of volunteer labor) and make

a down payment of $500. Houses are sold at cost and come with a 20-year,

no-interest mortgage. For a three-bedroom home, typical monthly payments

for mortgage, taxes, and insurance run about $400.

Prospective applicants must attend one of the information and application

sessions: Friday, April 7, 7 p.m., at Catholic Charities, 1 Centre

Street, or Sunday, April 9, 3 p.m., at the Boy’s & Girl’s Club of

Trenton, 212 Centre Street.

The South Trenton Habitat Project is part of Habitat for Humanity,

which has 1,500 affiliates in the United States and programs in 63

countries. Volunteers who want to help promote home ownership in Trenton’s

South Ward should call Rev. Jim Coston, community representative,

at 609-393-8810 or 609-656-0288.

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