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Tracking Legislation and Other Items Important to the Business Community:

State Budget Fiscal Year 2016
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Tax on Job Creators
A-4602 (Prieto/D-32; Greenwald/D-6; Sweeney/D-3)

The Governor issued a conditional veto, asking the Legislature to agree to an increase in the state's Earned Income Tax Credit from 20 percent to 30 percent. The Assembly approved the Governor's recommendations by a vote of 64-4. The Senate concurred by a vote of 38-1. Raises the gross income tax rate on taxable income exceeding $1 million to 10.75 percent for a temporary four-year-period and restores the state earned income tax credit to 25 percent of the federal credit. When taxes are increased, we see businesses and high net worth individuals consider their options and many move their residency and, in some cases, their businesses out of New Jersey. After these highly desired job creators leave, state government will lose the revenue it sought to collect.

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Economic Development
Senate Economic Growth Committee
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Includes Advanced Manufacturing/R&D in Economic Incentives
S-3010 (Sarlo/D-36)

Senate committee passed. Allows certain large development projects which involve businesses engaged in research, development or manufacture of drugs and medical devices, as well as businesses licensed to provide clinical laboratory services to qualify as mega projects under the Grow New Jersey Assistance Act (GROW NJ). If a project qualifies for mega project status, the value of its GROW NJ tax credits increases. This provision will allow the EDA to attract advanced manufacturing to New Jersey, which will diversify the state's economy and create jobs.

Senate Economic Growth Committee S-3010 Vote: Lesniak, Raymond J. - Yes; Cruz-Perez, Nilsa (VC) - Yes; Kyrillos, Joseph M. - Yes; Oroho, Steven V. - Yes; Whelan, Jim - Yes

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New Jersey Business Advisory Council
S-2709 (Beck/R-11; Sarlo/D-36)

Senate passed 40-0. Establishes the "New Jersey Business Advisory Council" within the Business Action Center (BAC) in the Department of State to advise the BAC and New Jersey Economic Development Authority on issues involving the improvement of the overall business climate in New Jersey. This council would be crucial in providing the BAC with direct input from the business community.

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Allows Parking Facilities to Qualify for Incentives
S-2458 (Pou/D-35; Sweeney/D-3; Pintor Marin/D-29; Wimberly/D-35; Singleton/D-7)

Senate passed 34-4; sent to Governor. Permits redevelopers that enter into long-term operation and maintenance agreements with municipal parking authorities to obtain tax credits under the ERG program when they develop mixed-use parking projects. The establishment of parking structures will incentivize consumers and businesses to patronize and live in newly developed/redeveloped areas.

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Labor
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Mandated Paid Sick Leave
S-785 (Weinberg/D-37)

Senate held. Requires all employers to provide earned sick leave to each worker it employs in New Jersey, with the exemption of employees bound by a collective bargaining agreement. Employees will receive one hour of earned sick leave for every 30 hours worked. A major concern for the State Chamber is the clause that will grandfather the current nine municipalities that already mandate paid sick leave through a local ordinance into this version of the legislation. We believe that this does not provide a level-playing field and may have unintended consequences, setting a bad precedent regarding future legislation that seeks to set statewide standards. Additional concerns include liability issues, notification, finding replacements and documentation.

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Prohibits Employer Credit Check
S-524 / S-1130 (Gill/D-34; Turner/D-15)

Senate passed 22-16. Prohibits an employer from requiring a credit check on a current or prospective employee, unless the employer is required to do so by law, or reasonably believes that an employee has engaged in a specific activity that is financial in nature and constitutes a violation of law. Businesses should have the option to utilize the use of credit information based on the individual needs of their business operation.

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Thumbs up and down indicates the Chamber's support or opposition to issues. Call the New Jersey Chamber Government Relations Department at (609) 989-7888 with questions or comments.

Trenton Watch Archive