New Jersey's 21st Legislative District

Senator Tom Kean, Jr.

Senator Tom Kean

Kean Says New Sweeney Business Tax Backtracks on Efforts to Make NJ Competitive, Affordable

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Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean said a new tax on New Jersey employers proposed by Senate President Stephen Sweeney today backtracks on a commitment to reforming the state’s tax and fiscal policies to make the Garden State more affordable and competitive with neighboring states.

Sen. Tom Kean said the Senate President’s proposed $657 million business tax increase will make the state less competitive, drive employers to other states, and hurt middle-class families. (Wikipedia)

“It is unfortunate that Senate President Sweeney has pulled back from his anti-tax talk, which echoed the arguments Republicans have been making for years about New Jersey’s crisis of affordability,” said Kean.  “Just when we seemed to be on the right track, Democrats have reverted to their old ways of demonizing employers and chasing jobs from New Jersey.”

The Senate President’s proposal would implement a three-percent surcharge on corporations earning more than $1 million in annual net income.

His claim is that the $657 million tax increase would “recapture” a portion of the tax savings that recent federal tax reforms produced for corporations.

“It’s clear that Democrats still don’t understand that New Jersey is in competition for employers and jobs with other states,” said Kean. “Our high tax rates already put New Jersey at a disadvantage. If we raise taxes even higher, we won’t ‘recapture’ anything from businesses that choose to move away to the many other states that will let them keep their federal tax savings. The price for bad tax policy doesn’t fall on faceless corporations, but on middle-families that lose jobs, raises, and an opportunity to build financial security.”

New Jersey already has the worst state business tax climate in the nation according to the Tax Foundation’s 2018 State Business Tax Climate Index.

Kean said the focus should be on improving affordability across the board, for individuals, families, and businesses.

“We need to hold the line on taxes and find smart opportunities to provide savings to taxpayers and increase New Jersey’s competitiveness,” added Kean. “Let’s start by increasing the state’s property tax deduction for homeowners, increasing support for charitable organizations, and holding the line on a tax reform process that will help New Jersey compete for the well-paying jobs our residents need.”

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