Insider NJ

State Legislature Must Join Governor Murphy And Reject Corporate Tax Subsidy Proposal

Insider NJ — October 23, 2019

New Jersey Citizen Action released the following statement today in response to a proposal submitted to both Governor Murphy and the State Legislature concerning the New Jersey Economic Development Authority's corporate tax subsidy programs.

"From all available information, former state Senators Ray Lesniak and Joe Kyrillos have submitted a wholly inadequate plan to reform New Jersey's corporate welfare programs, which have become a national embarrassment, rife with corruption and abuse," said Dena Mottola Jaborska, Associate Director of New Jersey Citizen Action. "Their plan contains only minor tweaks and most damagingly of all, lacks an overall cap to the total amount of taxpayer dollars invested in the program. This completely ignores key recommendations from experts and economists, who have echoed calls by the Governor and advocates for a hard cap on corporate tax subsidies. Caps would mean only the best projects are chosen to receive subsidies, forcing stronger oversight and ensuring firms aren't rewarded credits simply because they are politically connected. Caps are also critical to balancing our state's budget and ensuring we have funding for proven, more effective economic investments such as job training, education, transportation and other public services.

"The former senators were the original architects of the disastrous corporate welfare programs that have cost New Jersey billions for insufficient benefits, and that we now need to overhaul. They are not the credible reformers we need to turn these programs around. Our State Legislators need to act-they've had many months to explore solutions and should have by now developed their own meaningful reform plans. They must also join the Governor in roundly rejecting this proposal, which was developed without input from state policymakers or members of the public, who have paid the heaviest price for these programs' mismanagement, corruption and abuse for more than a decade."

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