It’s been an important week for New Jersey business – and NJBIA has been the leading, impactful voice on the biggest issues including the $15 minimum wage and legalization of marijuana.


Before the Legislature released bills this week to legalize recreational use of marijuana and expand access to medical marijuana, NJBIA fought for – and received – amendments protecting an employers’ right to maintain a drug-free workplace.

“The Prime Sponsor of the bill, said he agreed NJBIA had a case….. ‘Their concern was, what options do business have if someone is using a medical marijuana and it impairs their ability to do their job? They raised an excellent point” Sen. Joseph Vitale, D-Middlesex


I’d like to be part of the collective voice of business.  Please send me information about joining the New Jersey Business & Industry Association.  



Marijuana Legalization

“Legalization is more than a social issue; it could have real impacts on the workplace, including the safety of workers,” said NJBIA Vice President Mike Wallace.  Read full NJBIA Press Release: Workplace Safety Should Not Be Sacrificed with Legalization of Recreational Marijuana; Expansion of Medical Marijuana

“The medical bills had conflicting provisions in the bill, so we were able to work with (the) chairman (Sen. Joseph Vitale, D-Woodbridge) to make some amendments to the medical bill.” ROI-NJ: Legislative panel OKs recreational marijuana bill, other cannabis bills

“Specifically, we are asking that any law making marijuana legal for recreational adult use or expanding the State’s medical marijuana program also give employers the right to prohibit employees from using it in the workplace or coming to work under the influence of it.” NJ Spotlight: THE A TO Z OF LEGALIZING RECREATIONAL MARIJUANA IN NJ — ANY DAY NOW

“NJBIA is requesting that any legislation state clearly that legalization does not repeal or restrict the rights and obligations of public and private employers to maintain drug- and alcohol-free workplaces, or require an employer to permit or accommodate the use of marijuana, even if it is otherwise legal,” Press of Atlantic City: First vote on marijuana legalization likely Monday

But the wording was amended slightly at the request of the New Jersey Business & Industry Association to enable employers to take action against people who test positive for cannabis while on the job. NJ Spotlight: LAWMAKERS ADVANCE REVISED MEDICAL MARIJUANA BILL TO FURTHER EXPAND PROGRAM

With the Legislature holding hearings on three marijuana bills Monday, the New Jersey Business & Industry Association is advocating for provisions that would permit employers to have policies that help prevent workplace accidents and injuries. ROI-NJ: NJBIA: Workplace safety should not be sacrificed to marijuana

Wallace said that “the legislation should allow employers to prohibit smoking weed at work or coming to work under the influence of marijuana.” NJBIZ: Legislative committee approves cannabis legalization bill

And when Governor Murphy held a press conference to rally support for a $15 minimum wage, NJBIA publicly countered with a strong, detailed statement on the impacts on small business the increase would have.


$15 Minimum Wage

“Any responsible pathway to raising the minimum wage should take into consideration the impact on our small business owners, which drive our economy and support our communities.” Read full NJBIA Press Release: Statement on $15-an-hour Minimum Wage Discussion

“Raise salaries for workers at the bottom of the pay scale and wage compression will follow,” said Michele Siekerka, president of the New Jersey Business and Industry Association.NJ.com/Star-Ledger: Phil Murphy promised a $15 minimum wage. Here’s why it hasn’t happened.

“Any responsible pathway to raising the minimum wage should take into consideration the impact on our small- business owners, which drive our economy and support our communities,”WHYY: Murphy pressures top N.J. Democrats to pass $15 minimum wage hike

“Many of our members have already told us any significant increase in the minimum wage will result in a reduction of staff, hours and/or benefits, or an increase in prices or automation.” ROI-NJ: Murphy wants $15 minimum wage bill on his desk by year-end

“A gradual, phased-in increase of a $15 minimum wage will provide our job creators predictability and the ability to keep up with the continuing rising costs of running their business,” Siekerka added. NJBIZ: Murphy wants $15 minimum wage bill by end of year

“It’s also important to remember that raising the rate at the entry level, regardless of an employee’s skill level, means resetting the rate for other workers across the board.” InsiderNJ: Murphy Wants a $15 Minimum Wage Bill on the Legislative Board List by Dec. 17th


I’d like to be part of the collective voice of business.  Please send me information about joining the New Jersey Business & Industry Association.