TRENTON, N.J. (March 7, 2021) – New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy (D) is scheduled to deliver his budget address for 2022-23 tomorrow, outlining the administration’s fiscal and policy priorities for the coming budget-year in New Jersey.
Eileen Kean, New Jersey State Director for NFIB, the state and nation’s leading small business advocacy organization, urged Gov. Murphy to protect small business and position Main Street for a sustained economic recovery by stabilizing the state’s Unemployment Insurance (UI) Trust Fund.
“New Jersey’s UI Fund was decimated during the unemployment crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting government restrictions and shutdowns,” Kean said. “The Fund’s insolvency is the direct result of an historic volume of unemployment claims and state government mandates, not the business decisions of Main Street employers. If state government fails to replenish the depleted fund, New Jersey businesses will face a significant and unfair tax increase.”
State lawmakers underscored the urgency of an insolvent UI trust fund as the Senate Labor Committee today considered SB-733.
“NFIB applauds the Senate Labor Committee for hearing Senate Bill-733 today,” Kean added. “The bill allocates available funds from federal assistance programs to the UI Fund as an alternative to placing the tax increase on the shoulders of Main Street businesses.”
Kean hoped bipartisan recognition and commitment to solving the UI Fund problem could be realized before small businesses get hammered with higher UI taxes or assessments.
“NFIB is calling on the Governor and Legislature to quickly support S-733 in order to offset the massive unemployment insurance tax increase that will go into effect in July of this year,” Kean stated. “Otherwise, every business will pay more — regardless of whether they laid off workers during the pandemic. Dedicating remaining federal relief funds intended to offset pandemic-related disruptions will energize the state’s economy, prevent a costly tax increase, and give small business owners the breathing room to grow and hire.”
“New Jersey needs to follow the thirty-two other states that have already taken similar action,” continued Kean. “Tens of thousands of small businesses are now facing massive tax increases through no fault of their own. NFIB urges Governor Murphy to join the other governors on both sides of the aisle and take common-sense action to replenish New Jersey’s UI Fund.”
For more than 75 years, NFIB has been the voice of small business, advocating on behalf of America’s small and independent business owners, both in Washington, D.C., and in all 50 state capitals. NFIB is nonprofit, nonpartisan, and member-driven. Since our founding in 1943, NFIB has been exclusively dedicated to small and independent businesses and remains so today. For more information, please visit www.NFIB.com.