Business Report: Asbury Park rent control, financial scams legislation, wind farm manufacturing facility

Asbury Park residents reject strengthening of rent control ordinance

The downside of redevelopment and gentrification in many communities is often rising rents, and that story has been playing out in Asbury Park. But an effort to pass a new, tougher rent control ordinance was defeated by voters Tuesday night, by a nearly 2 to 1 margin. The Asbury Park Affordable Housing Coalition fought to put the ordinance on the ballot, which would have capped rent increases at 4%, or the current rate of inflation. That would have provided more tenant protections than another rent control ordinance recently passed by city council. The city council’s rent control ordinance caps rent increases at 3.5% and would allow landlords to raise rents to market prices once a tenant moves out.

A bill that aims to stop financial scams has been approved by the House. The legislation, sponsored by Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-5th), would create a task force within the Securities and Exchange Commission to strengthen safeguards for seniors, who are often victims of financial fraud but are reluctant to report it. The most common scams are by fraudsters who claim they are from the IRS.

Work has begun on New Jersey’s first offshore-wind manufacturing facility at the Port of Paulsboro Marine Terminal in Gloucester County. Ocean Wind, which is developing the offshore wind project, and EEW, a steel pipe manufacturer, announced the start of construction this week. The South Jersey Building Trades Council is involved with the project and more than 30 New Jersey companies will be involved in the design and site work. The initial work will create 260 new jobs. The facility will provide the foundations needed for the planned wind farm.

Ocean Wind is a joint venture between Orsted and PSEG, a funder of NJ Spotlight News.

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