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Bridgeton News — Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Staff Writer

BRIDGETON — Tri-County Community Action Partnership has accepted $2.5 million in construction loans to help fund several low-income housing projects they are developing in Bridgeton.

The loans are part of Vineland-based Sun Bankcorp, Inc's $38.4 million state-wide Community Reinvestment Act Commitment, a project that teams the banking firm with New Jersey Citizen Action and the Housing and Community Development Network of N.J. to assist community development and low and moderate-income home-owners throughout the state.

According to Michael Cudemo, communications director for Tri-County, the $2.5 million will be distributed between three key projects:

$1 million to Wesley Village II, an eight to ten home project on South East and Morris avenues and Colfax and South Pine streets

$1 million to Orchard Glen, an eight home project at the end of Quarter-Mile Lane past Quarter Mile Lane School

$500,000 to purchase a building on 10 Washington Street for a forthcoming project.

"This is continued evidence of Sun Bank's commitment to our agency and our community," remarked a grateful Cudemo on Monday.

Tom Kelly, senior vice president of small business and consumer lending for Sun Bankcorp, Inc. said it takes partnerships with groups like Tri-County to make these types of financial commitments a success.

In addition to construction loans, the Community Reinvestment Act Commitment has set aside $15 million in "affordable mortgage products" for individual homeowners.

These include discounted mortgages, mortgages with down payments and closing cost assistance and discounted home improvement loans.

Kelly said this is a great opportunity for Bridgeton and although he didn't deny that the deal was good for business, Kelly said the rewards aren't purely monetary.

"The banks that do this, they do it because it'll be good for the community," he remarked.

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