Michele Siekerka is CEO and president of the New Jersey Business & Industry Association.
She talked about Gov. Phil Murphy’s budget proposal in the context of NJBIA’s 2019 Regional Business Climate Report.
“The proposed budget, which spends 3.2 percent more than the current fiscal year and 11.2 percent more than in FY 2018, looks to pay for additional spending by raising taxes on our already-overtaxed residents and businesses. Our history of funding additional spending by increasing taxes is the formula fueling New Jersey’s high cost of living and affordability challenges. The result is a continued pattern of outmigration and job stagnation. The only way to turn this around is to put an emphasis on reforming the structural challenges we face, as they impact our economy due to their high cost to maintain. We are going from least competitive overall to extreme outlier status, and this is certainly not a move in the right direction.”