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NJBIA testified against legislation on Thursday that would place price controls on the pharmaceutical industry, which plays a pivotal role in New Jersey’s overall economy.

Bill A-1747, which calls for the establishment of a Prescription Drug Affordability Board, was released by the Assembly Financial Institutions Committee.

NJBIA Chief Government Affairs Officer Chrissy Buteas said that while the legislation may be well intentioned, it is the wrong way to address patient out-of-pocket drug costs.

“Addressing pricing of healthcare is much more complex than setting a mechanism to establish price controls for one segment of a multi-level sector,” Buteas said. “By not taking a holistic, systemwide approach to improving consumer costs, New Jersey will instead send a message to R&D companies that there are much more attractive states to invest in. That’s exactly what we don’t need.”

Buteas also added that such a bill would run counter to Gov. Phil Murphy’s vision – shared by NJBIA – to have New Jersey reclaim its role as the innovation state.

“We know for a fact that New Jersey already lags our regional competitors in critical indicators of innovation,” Buteas said. “We know that setting artificial price controls will result in an eventual decline in investment. And we know how important the pharmaceutical industry is to New Jersey’s economy.

“For all of these reasons, we urge the committee and the Legislature to vote ‘no’ on this bill and avoid taking a punitive approach to these companies that will inhibit private investment and research needed by the industry.”

Go here to read Buteas’ entire testimony on A-1747.