TRENTON – A measure sponsored by Senators Barbara Buono, Jeff Van Drew and Shirley K. Turner, which establishes the “Invest in New Jersey Business Grant Program Act,” as an incentive program to encourage businesses to make capital investments and hire and retain new workers was signed into law today by Governor Corzine.
“Today, New Jersey is taking a strong, bold step to decide its own economic future,” said Senator Buono, D-Middlesex, who chairs the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee. “Despite a national economic crisis which is hampering states around the country and slowing economic development when it is needed most, with this bill as law, we can take a strong stand for New Jersey’s own economic recovery.”
“The current status of the economy, on both a national and local level, has left too many New Jerseyans searching for employment,” said Senator Van Drew, D-Atlantic and Cape May. “Through this incentive program, the State will be able to help fill the void left by the numerous business closures and lay-offs, and provide opportunities for New Jersey’s workers to support themselves and their families.”
“In these tough economic times businesses are going to be looking to cut costs and consolidate anywhere they can, which could translate to an even higher number of lay-offs for New Jerseyans,” said Senator Turner, D-Mercer. “Through this new law we are easing some of the financial burden on local businesses, and laying a strong foundation for them to be able to flourish, and for New Jerseyans to be able to remain employed.”
The Senators’ bill, S-6, authorizes the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) to oversee the grant program, which will provide capital investment and employment grants to help ease the burden on New Jersey businesses.
The new law is broken down into two sections. Firstly, it provides for a capital investment incentive that will reimburse businesses for 7% of their repair/renovation expenses. These “capital investments” include site preparation, construction, renovations and obtaining machinery. The law also appropriates $70 million to the NJEDA to help cover the cost of the capital investment programs.
Secondly, the law authorizes employment grants of $3,000 per new hire to businesses that create full-time jobs, and retain those hires for at least one year. Businesses will have to provide health benefits to all applicable employees. The law appropriates $50 million to cover the cost of the employee grants.
This measure was approved by the Senate on November 24, 2008.