About the Center for Government Services
Through its research, training programs and service to New Jersey, Rutgers Center for Government Services (CGS) has promoted professionalism and excellence in state, county and local government for more than 60 years.
CGS' roots date back to 1950, when Rutgers established the Bureau of Government Research to provide in-service training, conduct research, serve as a clearinghouse for information and offer technical assistance to government agencies.
In 1991, the Bureau of Government Research and the Rutgers Department of Government Services were combined to form the Center for Government Services, which continues to advance the original mission on behalf of New Jersey, its citizens and institutions.
CGS is a key research partner for government entities in New Jersey. Its highly respected studies and reports have served as a catalyst for debate and action in such critical areas as legislative apportionment, public health, housing, tax policy, property taxes, and school finance, among other issues.
The foundation for the New Jersey Legislative District Data Book was laid early in the Bureau’s history in its research on legislative representation. In the 1950s, the Bureau called attention to inequalities in representation at a time when districts conformed to county lines. During that decade, Gov. Robert B. Meyner requested the Bureau study New Jersey’s Congressional Districts. The resulting report examined the history of such districts and proposed four plans for their revision.
In the1970s, when county lines no longer served as legislative district boundaries, the Bureau began to compile statistical data based on these newly drawn districts. The resulting New Jersey Legislative District Data Book was first published in 1976 and quickly became a trusted resource for government, citizens, the media and researchers. The 38th edition of the Data Book published in 2014 marks the last printed edition. Today, the New Jersey Data Book Online enables access to comprehensive data about New Jersey from anywhere in the world.
CGS is a state leader in providing training to improve the knowledge, competency and professionalism of state, county and local government officials and employees. It trains thousands annually in such fields as municipal finance, housing inspection and code enforcement, education facilities management, public purchasing, planning and zoning, and municipal administration. CGS is designated by the state legislature to offer state-mandated training for certifying public employees in specific areas requiring a high level of training and expertise.
Together with its partner, the Center for Executive Leadership in Government, CGS trains more than 8,000 individuals each year through 22 separate programs that include more than 750 courses, seminars and conferences. Courses are conducted throughout the state and taught by qualified practicing professionals.
As advanced in its original mission, CGS continues to offer technical assistance to support good government practices in New Jersey. Its manuals, conferences and seminars serve as important resources for governing bodies, managers and others.
For more information about the Center for Government Services and its programs, visit cgs.rutgers.edu.