On behalf of our member companies that provide 1 million jobs in our state and make NJBIA the largest statewide business association in the nation, NJBIA supports A-1135 / S-357 / S-624, (Coughlin (D19); Karabinchak (D18); Vainieri Huttle (D37) / Cryan (D20); Vitale (D19) / Cryan (D20); Vitale (D19)),which reinstates the prior property tax exemption for nonprofit hospitals with on-site, for-profit medical providers; requires some of these hospitals to pay community service contributions; and establishes the Nonprofit Hospital Community Service Contribution Study Commission.
As a result of a single tax court ruling on June 30, 2015, the New Jersey Tax Court determined Morristown Memorial Hospital was not eligible for property tax exemptions. This decision had a far-reaching impact on hospitals and physicians in New Jersey, as well as on municipal taxing authorities.
Since the court ruling, nonprofit hospitals across the state have been engaged in lengthy lawsuits with municipalities over property taxes. This cycle of litigation has not only taken up a lot of time, it has created large legal bills for hospitals, towns and taxpayers.
This legislation is necessary due to the uncertainty created by the Tax Court decision and offers taxpayers, municipalities, hospitals and patients a statewide, comprehensive solution. It would further protect the property tax exemption of nonprofit hospitals, provide voluntary payments to fund critical community services and put a stop to expensive lawsuits.
This legislation offers predictability and long-range budget planning, which is critical toserving the needs of patients within the communities that hospitals serve.
NJBIA believes this legislation further fosters the important relationship that exists between a hospital and the community.
For these reasons, we support A-1135 / S-357 / S-624.