NJBIA President and CEO Michele Siekerka issued the following statement regarding Gov. Phil Murphy’s proposed FY 2022 budget on Tuesday.
“NJBIA welcomes Governor Murphy’s efforts to prepare a state budget that contains no taxes or raised fees. This decision is as appropriate as it is appreciated, given the increased tax burdens on businesses and residents over recent years which have greatly contributed to New Jersey’s current surplus.
“The governor also deserves credit for committing to New Jersey’s first full pension payment since 1996, and for looking to reinvest in our great state through appropriations for education, infrastructure, innovation and small business. These are positives, all of which NJBIA called for prior to today’s budget address, as New Jersey businesses have continued to provide robust revenues commensurate with already having the highest corporate business tax and second highest top income tax rate in the nation.
“As we await more details on the FY22 budget, we do continue to have strong concerns about the sustainability of New Jersey’s overall spending. If the proposed $44.8 billion number holds for FY22, it would mean New Jersey’s signed budgets will have increased more than 29% over the last four fiscal years.
“If the investments we heard today are to be sustainable in FY23 and beyond, our state will certainly need more fiscal discipline. A reprieve from new taxes cannot be an election year special. Despite the strong pension payment put forth by the governor today, New Jersey’s pension and benefits system remains wholly unsustainable.
“New Jersey’s overall fiscal health will only be truly cured by a real commitment to cost savings and structural reforms as found in the Path to Progress report. NJBIA continues to call for these reforms as part of a comprehensive economic plan.
“NJBIA looks forward to working with the Murphy administration and the Legislature during this budget season to help further address New Jersey’s long-term affordability, to bring further and immediate support to small business in this historic time and to galvanize our economy for the benefit of all our citizens.”