It’s finally spring and that means our local public works and engineering departments are tackling all of the maintenance and repair projects that could not be undertaken during the winter months. Maybe these activities, or the time spent planning for them, has led to the creation of a way to build a better mousetrap. What do we mean by this? People involved in the transportation industry often find better ways to do their jobs. Whether it’s a new gadget that improves the quality and safety of a project, or an innovative process that reduces costs and improves efficiency, the people on the front lines are often the source of the innovations that become the latest and best practices.

New Jersey’s Build a Better Mousetrap Competition provides a great opportunity to share new ideas with others in the State and across the country.  We are looking for submissions from employees of local or state public agencies (municipalities, counties, parks commissions, NJ Department of Transportation, NJ Transit) that have developed new solutions to problems or found better ways of doing things. Your innovation does not need to be high tech or sophisticated, it can be a simple gadget or even a procedural change. Almost anything goes, as long as it has been implemented and proven to improve efficiency, safety, and/or cost. Take some pictures or video with your cell phone to capture the concept!

We will gather the best ideas from around the state and judge them using a 5-point rating system. The highest scoring entries will be recognized for their achievements. The “best” of our local entries will be entered into a Build a Better Mousetrap National competition sponsored by the national LTAP program.

Need help completing the entry form? Simply email us at and we will be happy to lend a hand.

Click the Better Mousetrap Competition for more information including an entry form to share your innovation and get in the game!


New Jersey LTAP Director, Janet Leli