Funding for the popular program, which helped keep one of the city's major commerce corridors clean, came from the state Urban Enterprise Zone (UEZ) Program. Over the past two years much of the UEZ Program has been phased out by Gov. Christopher Christie. This year, Jersey City stands to lose approximately $2 million in funding due state cuts in the UEZ program.
As the program has been phased out, the city has had to cut back on funding to its business districts, which are known as special improvement districts.
Under the city's 2012 budget all of the special improvement districts received $50,000 in funding.
The Central Avenue Special Improvement District's street sweeping program supplemented the city's own street cleaning operations.
In a letter to mayor Jerramiah T. Healy sent last November, Michael Yun, president of the Central Avenue Special Improvement District wrote, "Ending [the] sanitation program after 20 years of service to the community is an agonizing, but necessary, decision because the merchants and commercial property owners on Central Avenue no longer have the resources to continue."
The organization has also announced that it might not have the necessary funding and staff to organize the annual Everything Jersey City Festival this year.
Officials from the Central Avenue Special Improvement District said they have tried to meet with Mayor Healy to discuss the situation, but said Healy has denied their request for a meeting.
Yun has announced plans to run in the upcoming city election for the Ward D City Council seat and will be running against an unannounced candidate on Healy's re-election slate.
A request for a comment from the mayor's spokeswoman was not returned. - E. Assata Wright