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N.J. Chamber President Tom Bracken, chairman of Forward NJ, led a State House press conference Nov. 3 to discuss the importance of voter passage of Ballot Question 2, which would constitutionally dedicate all gas tax revenue to transportation improvements.

 

2016 10 28 RTB Bennett tm"We are not as healthy a population as we should be," New Jersey Department of Health Commissioner Cathleen Bennett told an audience of NJ Chamber members this morning at an N.J. Chamber roundtable breakfast at the National Conference Center in East Windsor.

 

The state was witness to a historic moment earlier this month. A bipartisan group of lawmakers came together and solved our state's transportation funding crisis. New Jersey now has the long-term source of funding it needs to fix our infrastructure. But there is one more piece to this puzzle: On Nov. 8, voters must vote "Yes" on Ballot Question 2 to ensure every dollar of the state's gas tax goes toward infrastructure funding.

2016 10 26 Member BreakfastNew Jersey Chamber of Commerce members exchanged business cards and discussed the latest Chamber programs, events and ways to grow their businesses at a networking event October 26 at Bayshore Community Hospital in Holmdel.

 

A 'Yes' Vote Will Ensure All State Gas Tax Revenue is Constitutionally Dedicated to Funding Transportation Projects - Over the past few weeks, we have seen transformational legislation passed by the state Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Christie - legislation that will go a long way in restoring New Jersey's long-term economic health and making our state more affordable for everyone.

FORUM 2016 tmThere was a fourth presidential debate, and it was hilarious. Top Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump impersonators squared off at the Pines Manor in Edison on Sept. 20, hosted by the New Jersey Chamber of Commerce.

 

The New Jersey Chamber of Commerce thanks Gov. Chris Christie for signing into law the landmark and transformational legislation that will be a catalyst for economic growth in New Jersey for years to come, and benefit everyone who lives and works here.

The New Jersey Chamber of Commerce applauds the passage of today's landmark legislation and we look forward to Gov. Christie signing it. We believe this legislation will be a catalyst for economic growth in New Jersey for years to come and it will benefit everyone who lives and works here.

landing header v2 tmThere are two people in America benefiting big time from the Clinton and Trump campaigns. They are Rosemary Watson and John Di Domenico, the popular Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump impersonators.

 

The NJ Chamber of Commerce believes the agreement announced Friday afternoon by Governor Chris Christie, Senate President Steve Sweeney, and Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto is great news for New Jersey and we urge the legislature to approve these measures as soon as possible.

2016 01 10 Caucus NJ

In a recent episode of 'Caucus: New Jersey', host Steve Adubato led a lively discussion on how to make New Jersey more competitive in attracting and retaining business. The panel featured the officers of Opportunity New Jersey: Tom Bracken, president and CEO, New Jersey Chamber of Commerce; Michele Siekerka, president and CEO, New Jersey Busioness & Industry Association; Debbie Hart, president and CEO, BioNJ; and Ralph Thomas, CEO and executive director, New Jersey Society of CPAs.

 

Tracking Legislation and Other Items Important to the Business Community:

Economic Development
Thumbs Up

Establishes Joint Permit Application Process for Aquaculture Projects
A-793 (Andrzejczak/D-1; Land/D-1; Taliaferro/D-3) /
S-316 (Van Drew/D-1; Connors/R-9)

Assembly passed 76-0. Requires the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Environmental Protection to work with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to establish a joint permit application process for aquaculture projects that require both state and federal permits, licenses and approvals. This bill will make the approval process more efficient and increase the incentive for developers to launch aquaculture projects.

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Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee
Thumbs Up

Requires Adoption of Joint Application and Review Program for Aquaculture Projects
A-794 (Andrzejczak/D-1; Land/D-1; Taliaferro/D-3) /
S-317 (Van Drew/D-1; Connors/R-9)

Assembly passed 76-0. Senate committee passed. Requires the Secretary of Agriculture, in consultation with the Commissioner of Environmental Protection, to develop and implement an aquaculture permitting review program to provide for the coordinated review of any aquaculture project. This bill, in conjunction with S-316, will attract more developers to aquaculture projects.

Senate Budget Committee S-317 Vote: Sarlo, Paul A. (C) - Yes; Stack, Brian P. (VC) - Yes; Beck, Jennifer - Yes; Bucco, Anthony R. - Yes; Cunningham, Sandra B. - Yes; Diegnan, Patrick J. - Yes; Gordon, Robert M. - Yes; Greenstein, Linda R. - Yes; O'Toole, Kevin J. - Yes; Oroho, Steven V. - Yes; Pou, Nellie - Yes; Thompson, Samuel D. - Yes; Van Drew, Jeff - Yes

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Thumbs Up

BEIP Tax Credits
S-2477 (Sarlo/D-36; Oroho/R-24) /
A-4083 (Schaer/D-36; Space/R-24)

Senate passed 36-0. Allows companies that are using BEIP tax credits to pay their insurance premiums tax to receive a refund if their tax credits are higher in value than what they owe in the insurance premiums tax. Previously, companies could only receive refunds if they chose to apply the tax credit to their corporate business tax liability.

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Education
Assembly Education Committee
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Establishes "New Jersey Innovation Inspiration School Grant Pilot Program"
A-2195 (Singleton/D-7; DeAngelo/D-14; Caride/D-36; Mukherji/D-33; Holley/D-20) /
S-1181 (Allen/R-7)

Assembly committee passed. Establishes the four-year "New Jersey Innovation Inspiration School Grant Pilot Program" in the Department of Education. The program would grant awards to school districts to encourage student participation in non-traditional Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). A Georgetown University study shows that New Jersey will be home to 248,250 STEM-related jobs by 2018. By encouraging development in STEM education, New Jersey will be able to remain competitive.

Assembly Education Committee A-2195 Vote: Caride, Marlene (C) - Yes; Singleton, Troy (VC) - Yes; Auth, Robert - Yes; Caputo, Ralph R. - Yes; Jasey, Mila M. - Yes; Jimenez, Angelica M. - Yes; Jones, Patricia Egan - Yes; McKnight, Angela V. - Yes; Rible. David P. - Yes; Taliaferro, Adam J. - Yes; Wolfe, David W. - Yes

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Environment
Thumbs Down

Lead Contamination Appropriation
S-2062 (Bateman/R-16) /
A-4065 (Singleton/D-7; Jones/D-5)

Senate passed 34-0. Appropriates up to $20 million from the societal benefits charge to Department of Environmental Protection for remediation of lead contamination in drinking water in public buildings.The bill takes money paid by electric and gas ratepayers for energy efficiency and clean energy projects and turns it over to the DEP to pay for infrastructure. The State Chamber encourages the State of New Jersey to consider the utilization of other sources of revenue, such as the Environmental Infrastructure Trust (EIT), for cleanups, instead of diverting revenue from the clean energy fund.

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Transportation
Assembly Transportation and Independent Authorities Committee
Thumbs Up

TTF Compensation
A-4114 (Muoio/D-15; Schaer/D-36; Coughlin/D-19; Benson/D-14; Holley/D-20; Wisniewski/D-19; Gusciora/D-15)

Assembly committee passed. Requires the Department of Transportation to compensate local government entities for any contractual delay damages resulting from shutdown of transportation projects funded by the Transportation Trust Fund (TTF). The State Chamber has been adamant about securing funding for the TTF, and believes that the State has an obligation to pay back the municipalities and counties for following through on their contracts.

Assembly Transportation and Independent Authorities Committee A-4114 Vote: Wisniewski, John S. (C) - Yes; Vainieri Huttle, Valerie (VC) - Not Voting; Benson, Daniel R. - Yes; Chaparro, Annette - Yes; Chiaravalloti, Nicholas - Yes; Clifton, Robert D. - Not Voting; DeCroce, BettyLou - Yes; Giblin, Thomas P. - Yes; Kennedy, James J. - Yes; McGuckin, Gregory P. - No; Muoio, Elizabeth Maher - Yes; Oliver, Sheila Y. - Yes; Rumana, Scott T. - No

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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.