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A reliable exit survey on businesses leaving New Jersey would provide a better understanding of the reasons for outmigration, the New Jersey Business & Industry Association said after the Senate passed a bill (S-1207) that would require the state to reach out to businesses deciding to move elsewhere.

“Developing this level of data on why businesses leave New Jersey will help focus on what we can do to make New Jersey more attractive before businesses decide to leave,” said Mike Wallace, NJBIA director of Employment, Labor  and Federal Affairs. “If employers are confident about the direction New Jersey’s business climate is headed, they will be much more likely to create jobs and invest in their operations. And that kind of economic activity will help the whole state.”

Under the bill, the NJ Department of Labor would send out surveys to companies that close or leave the state and ask for their specific reasons for ending business here.  The survey will include questions about taxes, workforce quality and the cost of conducting business, as well as recent business interaction with government on their problems. A yearly report will be provided to the Governor and the Legislature.

“Last year, NJBIA’s outmigration study highlighted the problem of income leaving the state and the impact it has on our economy,” Wallace said.  “This bill could give us a deeper understanding of the problem and help develop a consensus on what we can do about it.”

NJBIA’s analysis of the financial impact of outmigration of New Jersey taxpayers concluded that more than $20 billion in net adjusted gross income left the state over the last 11 years, with $2.4 billion leaving in 2015 alone.

The bill is awaiting action in the Assembly Labor Committee.