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Minimum Wage At Blackboard Behind Stacked CoinsThe New Jersey Business & Industry Association supports legislation that would help mitigate the effects a $15-an-hour minimum wage would have on jobs for those under 18 years old by providing tax credits to employers who hire them.

The bill, S-3483 (Addiego, Singleton), is scheduled for a vote in the Senate Labor Committee today.

“One of the unintended consequences of increasing the minimum wage so dramatically is an unexpected decrease in the employment of high school students,” said NJBIA Vice President of Government Affairs Mike Wallace. “As the minimum wage increases, employers are going to be less likely to hire youth workers with limited skills.

“This in turn robs young people of the valuable after-school and summer-vacation work experience that so many people had growing up,” Wallace said. “This bill would make it feasible for an employer to hire someone under age 18.”

Specifically, the bill would provide an employer with a refundable tax credit against the corporation business tax or the gross income tax, as applicable, for the extra wages and payroll taxes paid to a worker under age 18.

The bill is one of several measures NJBIA is advocating for to help mitigate the negative effects of the minimum wage increase. They include an “economic off ramp” to suspend minimum wage increases in a severe recession or after a natural disaster, providing tax credits to businesses with 10 or fewer employees, and a requirement to study the impact of the minimum wage increase on the economy.