Path to Progress? Walk to Washington train-goers overwhelmingly see it as positive plan

By Tom Bergeron
Between Newark and Washington, D.C. | Feb 27, 2020 at 5:16 pm

The annual ROI-NJ Walk to Washington poll is hardly official — we ask whoever we run into while we walk through the train cars. But it does provide a snapshot of the thoughts of the state’s top business and governmental leaders.

Questions about Gov. Phil Murphy’s budget address, the state of incentives in the state and Senate President Steve Sweeney’s Path to Progress all drew interesting responses. Especially the Path to Progress.

Support for Sweeney’s (D-West Deptford) plan to reshape the New Jersey economy while dealing with its pension and budget was overwhelming, as 92% percent of respondents felt the state should adopt the plan.

Murphy’s budget plan was not as well-received. Respondents were given three options on how they viewed his proposal: great, fair and unrealistic — with 60% saying it was fair, while 40% felt it was unrealistic. No one overwhelmingly supported his plan.

The annual budget battle figures to play out at the end of June — as it always seems to do. This year, many train-goers felt it will have an additional item to contend with: tax incentives.

When asked if Murphy’s proposed incentives would be passed before the budget battle, during the budget battle or after the budget battle, 62% said they felt the proposal would be part of the budget negotiations, while 38% said they would be done after the budget battle. No one had confidence they would be handled before the budget battle.

The poll results

Question No. 1: Would you enact the Path to Progress?

  • Yes: 92%
  • No: 8%

Question No. 2: How would you rate Gov. Phil Murphy’s budget proposal?

  • Great: 0%
  • Fair: 60%
  • Unrealistic: 40%

Question No. 3: When will the Legislature act on Gov. Murphy’s incentive proposals?

  • Before the budget process: 0%
  • During the budget process: 62%
  • After the budget process: 38%

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