Regina Egea, president, Garden State Initiative
“We need look no further than up I-95 to Connecticut to see what the failure to confront our cost of government and crippling debt will lead to: anemic growth when the majority of the nation is booming, growing per capita debt, an outmigration of our best and brightest talent and the departure of good-paying jobs and businesses. According to the business leaders GSI interviewed just this past spring, New Jersey is discouraging new talent from taking executive positions located here, and our current workforce is being diluted by the highest-skilled individuals taking jobs in other states with a more positive economic outlook.
“The Legislature’s budget, while temporarily satiating our government’s appetite for spending, will push New Jersey well beyond the tax rates of our neighbors and competitor states.
“Many companies have taken the benefits of the federal corporate tax rate reduction to 21 percent to invest in their businesses and expand their operations. Several states like Iowa sensed opportunity and moved to lure those investments by reducing their own corporate and income taxes. Iowa’s statutory reduction of their corporate tax rate to 9.8 percent in the coming years gives employers confidence that the state is serious about economic growth.
“This ‘tax-first’ budget sends a clear message that the Legislature is indifferent to what it will take to make New Jersey competitive again and continues our state down a dangerous path already plowed by Connecticut.”