New Jersey’s upcoming budget season offers an opportunity for the state to send a positive signal to the state’s business community and give it the confidence it needs to invest in their businesses and create jobs, New Jersey Business & Industry Association President Michele Siekerka said today.
“New Jersey businesses are overtaxed—facing among the highest taxes in the nation. Add to this the threat of new mandates such as paid sick leave on top of the recently increased minimum wage and the cumulative impact is no longer sustainable. All of these things make our members wary of investing in the expansion of their operations. Lawmakers must reduce the tax burden on employers if they want to create jobs and improve the economy,” Siekerka said.
“According to our latest Business Outlook Survey New Jersey employers came into 2015 feeling good about the prospects for their business, but are concerned with the broader economy,” Siekerka said. “Businesses are ready to invest in expansion and hire new workers. They just need some positive economic signs to reassure them.
“Policymakers can send that positive signal to our members by moving forward on practical proposals that reduce the cost of doing business and improve the state’s economic climate,” Siekerka said. “The upcoming budget is a perfect place to start.”
Governor Chris Christie will deliver his budget message tomorrow and the Legislature will spend the spring crafting a spending plan before the state’s fiscal year ends on June 30. NJBIA is urging lawmakers to phase out either the estate or inheritance tax. New Jersey is one of only two states that have both.
“According to a study by NJBIA’s research affiliate the NJ Policy Research Organization (NJPRO), having an estate and inheritance tax contributes to a negative economic climate,” Siekerka said.
“These taxes actually create an incentive for small businesses to move out of New Jersey when they are planning for the succession of their business. As businesses leave the state to escape this burden they will take with them their taxable income (both personal and business), the jobs that their company created, their spending power and in many situations, they will no longer be paying property tax, as well.
“This is a problem that New Jersey can remedy now by repealing at least one of the two death taxes,” Siekerka said. New Jersey’s $675,000 exemption threshold for the estate tax is the lowest in the nation. Phasing out one of the taxes would send the much needed positive signal to New Jersey employers that New Jersey is taking concrete steps to improve its business tax climate.” NJBIA stands ready to work cooperatively with our policymakers in advancing practical solutions to bring relief to New Jersey’s overtaxed businesses.”