NJBIA testified on Monday in support of 10 bills aimed at helping New Jersey businesses, including $100 million in funding for micro-businesses, hospitality businesses, childcare centers, nonprofits and cultural institutions, which all have been severely impacted by the pandemic.
“The number of small businesses open now in New Jersey, compared to pre-pandemic January of 2020, is down 38.7%, and their revenue is down 41.9%,” said NJBIA Vice President of Government Affairs Christopher Emigholz in testimony before the Assembly Commerce & Economic Development Committee meeting.
In the leisure and hospitality sector 66.9% of small businesses have closed since January 2020, Emigholz said.
“Consistently throughout the pandemic, New Jersey has had among the worst unemployment rates in the nation (7.7% today) and has seen more and more people drop completely out of the labor market. These bills will help our economy and hopefully address these distressing numbers,” Emigholz said.
All 10 bills were unanimously released by the committee.
Emigholz said NJBIA supports A-4634 (Schaer/Johnson/McKnight), which supports large businesses with a 1% Corporation Business Tax break and small businesses by providing incentives for corporations to contract with them. However, Emigholz said NJBIA is seeking an amendment to extend the tax break to pass-through businesses that pay taxes through the income tax, instead of the CBT.
“Most businesses are organized this way, including many large businesses that this bill is designed to help,” Emigholz said. “We understand that the sponsor wants to keep the bill narrower at this time, but we hope this amendment can be considered in the in the future to make this bill more equitable among all types of businesses.”
The other nine bills NJBIA supported that advanced on Monday include:
- A-4918 (Greenwald) which allows corporations continue holding remote shareholder meetings after the public health emergency caused by the pandemic is over.
- A-4958 (Tully) which provides temporary sales tax relief to small businesses for expenses related to winterizing outdoor operations during colder months, including the purchase of products to melt or remove snow and ice, tents, and space heaters.
- A-5218 (Freiman) which allows restaurants to use a bonus depreciation allowance of up to $150,000 for capital expenditures incurred to comply with the health and safety requirements of the governor’s executive orders related to COVID-19.
- S-3305/A-5389 (Smith/Oroho/Chaparro/Danielsen/Dancer) which allows CBT and gross income tax credits for nonresidential building improvements expenses to reduce the spread of COVID-19. The credit, which would be available through 2022, would apply to expenditures for bipolar ionization and ultraviolet lightening to disinfect air and surfaces, infrared thermometers, transparent sneeze guards, touchless entry systems, ventilation systems and other materials and supplies related to COVID-19 precautions.
- Five EDA funding bills that would provide a collective $100 million in support for micro-businesses, hospitality businesses, childcare centers, nonprofits and cultural institutions – businesses that have been severely impacted by the pandemic with state-ordered closures and operating restrictions. Those bills supported by NJBIA are:
- A-5443 (Johnson/Freiman/Armato)
- A-5444 (Mazzeo/Tully/Mejia)
- A-5445 (Swain/Mosquera/Taliaferro)
- A-5446 (Zwicker/Downey)
- A-5447 (Carter/Houghtaling/McKnight)