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Food Banks Pleading With DRPA To Release Promised Funds

CAMDEN, N.J. (CBS) – Local food banks say they’re still waiting for $2 million in funding from the Delaware River Port Authority, approved by the agency more than a year and a half ago but subsequently put on hold.

DRPA voted to grant the funds to food banks in December of 2009. The money was slated to come from its economic development fund, a controversial program that’s funded stadiums, museums, concert halls, and other non-core functions of the DRPA.

But the money spigot was turned off late last year. DRPA chairman John Matheussen says that’s when the board made a decision about grants that were not already under contract.

“It wasn’t singling out the food banks,” Matheussen says. “It just said any monies that were not under contract as of November or December of 2010 were not to be paid out by staff. And staff has honored that. We take instructions from our board.”

But Joe Njoroge of the Food Bank of South Jersey says hunger plays by its own rules.

“They obviously know the need of hunger in South Jersey, and they know it’s something that’s very serious,” he says of the DRPA leadership. “So all we’re asking of them is to follow through with this.”

He adds that the DRPA’s lack of response leaves the food pantries in limbo.

“We haven’t been given a resolute answer whether it’s coming or not, or anything that may have happened with it.  We’ve had conversations with them and all they’ve asked us to do is tell them how we will spend this money. And we have done that on several occasions,” Njoroge told KYW Newsradio.

Reported by Molly Daly, KYW Newsradio 1060

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  • itz

    Unless the Food Bank is serving sandwiches and drinks to commuters on the DRPA bridges, no money should have been promised nor sent to the Food Bank. Yes a worthwhile organization, but one that has nothing to do with the commuters, bridges, or trains.

  • kelprod

    Not sure which is more disgraceful…the agency itself using revenue to fund endless patronage for things which have nothign to do with getting across the river or the fact that our “leadership” continue to let it happen. The agency which now charges $5 bridge tolls, shoul dbe charging $0.50 brideg tolls if it stuck to its mission of getting folks across the river. The entire agency needs to be completely disbanded and replaced with a new agency which carries out its sole mission. The place is a total disgrace and is nothign more than criminal level redirecting of money….

  • Disgusted

    They NEVER should have promised anyone any money, that is not what the tolls are for.The money paid at the tolls should be used for the bridges and trains not donated to anyone.regardless of the cause. Then when it comes to replacing the trains and resurfacing the bridges, they look for more money from the taxpayer. Enough is enough.

  • Concern,,,, & posts)

  • pearl

    DRPA is nothing but taxation without representation. Get rid of the whole damm orginization

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  • Uncle Vinnie

    This whole commission should be abolished, started by crooks , run by crooks
    Actually all crook outfits should be investigated starting the the non profits like AARP. Money and greed run this country. Canada looks like a place to relocate.

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