MIDLAND PARK, N.J. – In light of a business survey that found 45 percent of employers would close within three weeks, and over 83 percent within 11 weeks, Assemblyman Christopher DePhillips said he will work on providing state-level relief for businesses. He says the best way to start is ensuring current-year income will last beyond the pandemic.
“There is a huge surge of businesses and employees who aren’t making any money right now, and New Jersey’s high cost of living could end up being the straw that breaks their back,” said DePhillips (R-Bergen). “We can only focus on what the state can control, and the one thing the state can control is taxes. That is where relief needs to start.”
DePhillips introduced a bill cutting the corporation business tax to 2.5 percent over four years. He says that plan could be implemented right away and amended to apply retroactively. The assemblyman will also propose a $10,000 standard deduction on income taxes that is not mutually exclusive with other exemptions, deductions or credits, removing the cap on property tax deductions, and increasing property taxes as a percentage of rent to 30 percent from 18 percent.
“The state can’t afford to spend right now, and state revenues will drop as much as personal income does,” continued DePhillips. “This doesn’t have to be a lose-lose situation for government and people. Elected officials need to put constituents’ personal income first, even if that means state revenue is a sacrificial lamb. People need to come out of this pandemic physically and financially healthy. That is the priority.”
About three in five businesses have had to let workers go, and over three quarters of respondents said that they might need up to $100,000 to survive the next three months.
The EDA has announced more than $75 million, over $100 million with federal resources, in assistance for small businesses. The programs will assist between 3,000 and 5,000 small and midsized businesses, only 0.56 percent of the just under 885,000 small businesses in New Jersey.
DePhillips sent the survey by email to over 300 businesses in his district on Wednesday, March 25, and posted on Facebook.