CEDS - FY 2015 PlanComprehensive Economic Development Strategy

The Board of the South Jersey District initiated the preparation of this FY 2017 CEDS Annual Update covering the SJEDD Fiscal Year of April 1, 2017­ March 31, 2018 for a number of important reasons, principally related to the evolving economic and demographic characteristics of the region; a need to revisit stakeholder and community priorities; and a desire to identify some new development priorities for the area.

Since the FY2015-2020 CEDS, New Jersey has laid a framework for such regional collaboration under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA, signed into law on July 22, 2014). New Jersey responded by creating a talent development system, focused on ensuring that people have the skills, abilities and connections to find jobs and a career that builds a skilled workforce to drive economic growth. The mission is to increase the number of residents with an industry‐valued credential or degree through high quality partnerships and integrated investments.

New Jersey's Talent Development Strategy is focused on five critical themes: The most important way to strengthen New Jersey's workforce is to build High Quality Partnerships with a wide range of employers, state departments, local governments, educational institutions, organized labor and community‐based organizations that play critical roles in the labor market. Communicating with the workforce development system will provide an opportunity to strategically coordinate the services available to further the development of talent throughout New Jersey.

This update provides the framework for implementing a regional economic development agenda and targeting the regional initiatives and key industries identified in the talent development strategy that will bring greater prosperity to southern New Jersey. The District hosted meetings with each of its constituent counties at the end of 2017 and early 2018 to obtain suggestions on changes to the CEDS and additional project concepts.