CCSNJ Support of A-2152/A-3683
M E M O R A N D U M
TO: Members of the Assembly Appropriations Committee
FROM: Hilary Chebra, Manager, Government Affairs, CCSNJ
RE: A-2152 (Greenwald/Chaparro/Dancer)/A-3683 (Freiman/Greenwald/Tully)
The Chamber of Commerce Southern New Jersey (CCSNJ) would like to voice our strong support for A-2152 (Greenwald/Chaparro/Dancer)/A-3683 (Freiman/Greenwald/Tully). This committee substitute allocates the creates the Unemployment Compensation Revolving Fund, and appropriates $375 million to that fund. Additionally, the committee substitute requires advanced notice of changes in employer UI taxes, and provides tax credits to small businesses to offset UI tax increases. Although the CCSNJ was pleased that the Legislature took action in January of 2021 and passed A-4853/S-3011 (Greenwald/Madden), which phased in the increased UI payroll tax hike, that action was not enough to stave off the previous and continued pending tax increase on businesses.
Due to no fault of their own, New Jersey-based businesses were forced to close during the height of the pandemic, requiring them to lay off workers. During this time, the state faced historic unemployment levels, which heavily drew down the New Jersey’s unemployment insurance (UI) fund. In October of last year, employers were faced with a $252 million increase in UI taxes and will be burdened with an additional $1 billion in UI tax increases over the next two years unless funds are allocated to offset these increases.
Businesses continue to struggle, many businesses can not to return to pre-pandemic operations due to a labor shortages, high inflation and an overall drag on the supply chain. This bill would wisely and provides tax credits to small businesses to offset UI tax increases. The proposed FY2023 budget promised no new taxes, even after the first $252 tax increase on employers occurred; now, the business community is hoping for state government intervention to offset the remaining $1 billion increase upon them. This bill is the right and fair thing to do and will give business owners the peace of mind that they need to continue to navigate the state’s economic recovery.
Additionally, the committee substitute requires the Supplemental Unemployment Compensation Revolving Fund be used to pay into the unemployment compensation fund amounts needed to pay back loans the state took out during the pandemic to continue paying out unemployment benefits in order to replenish the fund and limit additional interest. In September 2021, the federal government began collecting interest on any remaining unpaid unemployment-related loans. This bill takes actions to put the state on a fiscally responsible path.
For these reasons, we respectfully urge you to vote yes on A-2152 (Greenwald/Chaparro/Dancer)/A-3683 (Freiman/Greenwald/Tully).