It’s all over but the signing.
Gov. Phil Murphy said Thursday there will be no state shutdown because he will sign some version of the state budget the Legislature sent him a week ago before the constitutional deadline, even though it doesn’t include the millionaires tax increase and other provisions he has been demanding.
Murphy has scheduled a press conference for 2 p.m. Sunday, where he will take official action on the spending plan. As governor, he cannot add any provisions to the budget, but he can eliminate specific line items before signing the bill if he wants.
As Ryan Hutchins of Politico explained, “The governor told reporters at a press conference in Secaucus that he had decided to accept some version of the $38.8 billion budget lawmakers sent him last week, but would not say if he planned to line-item veto some or all of the spending items added by lawmakers.”
Until now, no one knew for sure what Murphy planned to do with this year’s spending plan.
Murphy has held numerous public events this week highlighting the policies he wanted in the budget but which the Legislature had left out. Murphy’s millionaires tax proposal would extend New Jersey’s top 10.75 percent income tax rate to income over $1 million (currently, it applies to income over $5 million). The governor also has called for new taxes on opioid manufacturers and certain businesses that do not provide generous enough health benefits for their employees.
NJBIA has opposed Murphy’s plan to increase the millionaires tax, arguing that New Jerseyans are already over taxed, and that it would hurt many small businesses that pay income taxes as pass-through entities.