TRENTON, N.J. – In 2019, Assemblyman Christopher DePhillips sponsored legislation that successfully doubled the angel investor tax credit. Noting increased competition from neighboring states and a lagging economy, he introduced a bill Tuesday to increase the tax credit again.
DePhillips’ bill (A5056) increases the tax credit for investments in early-stage technology businesses based in New Jersey to 30% from 20%. Investments in such businesses located in a qualified opportunity zone, low-income community, or a business that is certified as minority- or women-owned would also benefit from a 10% tax credit boost.
“New Jersey must attract and retain businesses, especially ones that are poised for growth like startup tech companies, because they are creating jobs and opportunities and fueling economies,” DePhillips (R-Bergen) said. “With an economy that continues to lag the nation’s, talks of a recession, and increased competition from states like New York that are offering attractive tax breaks to startups, now is the time to up the credits in the angel investor program.”
The Angel Investor Tax Credit Program provides investors with refundable tax credits against qualified investments in emerging tech firms that conduct research and development, and manufacturing. To qualify, a business must have less than 225 employees and at least three quarters of those employees must work in New Jersey.
“The enhanced angel investor tax credit law that took effect at the beginning of 2020 was a step in the right direction, but disastrous Covid-19 policies dictated by this administration disproportionately harmed vulnerable entrepreneurs,” DePhillips added. “However, with smart incentives, New Jersey can reclaim its position as a leader in innovation and reverse its unfortunate bad-for-business reputation.”
In 2021, the New Jersey Economic Development Authority approved a record 559 angel investor tax credit applications representing an investment of more than $100 million in 39 New Jersey businesses.
“The entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in New Jersey, but brilliant ideas need private investment to succeed,” DePhillips said. “Further bolstering this program will send the message that New Jersey is the best place to start and build businesses.”