Borough of Dunellen Passes Ordinance # 2024-20 Ratifying the Dunellen Downtown Management Organization (DDMO)

Borough of Dunellen Passes Ordinance # 2024-20 Ratifying the Dunellen Downtown Management Organization (DDMO) at June 17, 2024 Council Meeting, Increasing Volunteer Opportunities and Expanding Economic Development Efforts

Dunellen, NJ – June 24, 2024 – At the June 17, 2024, Dunellen Borough Council Meeting, Ordinance # 2024-20 was approved by Mayor Jason F. Cilento and Dunellen Borough Council following an initial reading at the June 3, 2024, Council Meeting, formally establishing the Dunellen Downtown Management Organization (DDMO) as an official, ratified organization, defining the goals and responsibilities of the organization and the method of appointment of members.

“The DDMO has been an invaluable resource for the Borough of Dunellen and I’m proud that we were able to adopt Ordinance # 2024-20 to make the organization a ratified fixture for our community,” said Council President Terri Albertson.

The organization advises and assists the Borough in planning and promoting economic development and various improvements within the Borough. The DDMO was originally established 14 years ago by resolution and throughout that time has helped business efforts including grand openings, business anniversaries, and local promotions, led beautification initiatives throughout our Borough, and hosts one of Dunellen’s most iconic annual events, HarvestFest, which features local artists, crafters, and nonprofits, activities for kids, food, music, and more.

“The DDMO is a volunteer organization and several of our members have been on the committee since its inception. Just a few people can make a big difference in a small town, and we are very grateful for their contributions!” said Peg Lockwood, Chairperson of the DDMO.

Following the adoption of Ordinance # 2024-20, the DDMO advisory committee has expanded from 9 seats to 15 seats allowing more volunteering opportunities with the organization. Each member serves a one-year term following their appointment by the Mayor. The committee consists of a mix of public and private members including:

  • The Borough Administrator or designee (1)
  • Members of the Borough Council (2)
  • Member of the Dunellen Planning Board (1)
  • Member of the Dunellen Historical Society (1)
  • Members of the Business Community (6)
  • Members that are Residents of Dunellen and/or Local Civic Leaders (4)

“The establishment of the DDMO as a formalized entity in the Borough of Dunellen is a big step for our community as having our own downtown management organization has been instrumental in promoting, attracting, and retaining businesses and boosting our economic growth. I believe that a vibrant downtown is essential for the success of any municipality and following the accomplishments of the DDMO over the years, we are excited to expand these initiatives as we assess the creation of a Special Improvement District, which would further enhance our local business community,” said Mayor Jason F. Cilento.

Along with the DDMO’s ongoing economic development efforts, the Borough of Dunellen has enlisted Ink Creative Strategies to conduct a Special Improvement District (SID) Assessment to look into the possibility of bringing a SID to the Borough of Dunellen. Special Improvement Districts are defined areas within a municipality where property owners and businesses collaborate to manage additional services and improvements. We look forward to sharing future updates!

“Special Improvement Districts (SIDs) are essential in today’s economic climate to support small businesses by strengthening the entrepreneurial ecosystem,” said consultant Natalie Pineiro, Founder of INK Creative Strategies. “By offering unified management and targeted improvements, SIDs create memorable and authentic experiences for both residents and consumers, fostering vibrant and thriving downtown areas.”

Visit www.Dunellen-NJ.gov/Volunteering to check out all of the volunteering opportunities with the DDMO and other Borough of Dunellen committees and organizations.

 

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