Budget response: Some groups loved it — and some still are calling for CBT surcharge to return

Gov. Phil Murphy’s proposed $55.9 billion budget was roundly criticized by business groups — mostly because of the new Corporate Transit Fee, which would put a 2.5% surcharge on any business with net annual income of $10 million or more.

Of course, that didn’t bother some other groups. Some didn’t even feel it fully replaced the 2.5% Corporate Business Tax surcharge.

More on that at the end of the story.

For now, a look at some of the groups that praised the budget and its attention to programs that aid residents over businesses.

Some examples:

  • New Jersey League of Conservation Voters (Executive Director Ed Potosnak): We applaud the governor for putting forth the greenest budget in his tenure. We are pleased that Gov. Murphy is again positioning New Jersey as a clean energy leader by investing in modernization of our electric grid in his state budget. As we move toward a 100% clean energy future, these critical investments will improve service reliability and advance clean, renewable sources of energy like offshore wind. We also applaud the governor for his continued promotion of a Green Fund to leverage federal, state and private investments to boost clean energy projects and jobs in our state.
  • New Jersey Policy Perspective (President Nicole Rodriguez): The governor’s budget proposal rightly asks the world’s biggest corporations to pay for the infrastructure that helps generate their record-breaking profits. In this current era of rising inequality, if corporations are going to swallow a lion’s share of economic growth, they shouldn’t expect to pay less in taxes and have working families make up the difference. The new Corporate Transit Fee is a testament to the tireless advocacy of workers, transit riders, advocates and local elected officials in every corner of the state who fought for a fairer tax code.
  • Communications Workers of America N.J. (State Director Fran Ehret): In addition to our appreciation for Gov. Murphy’s full pension payment, we look forward to working with the Murphy administration to continue funding crucial priorities — such as health care, child care, tax fairness, racial justice, environmental justice, economic justice, pay equity and workers’ rights.”
  • Housing and Community Development Network of New Jersey (CEO Staci Berger): Everyone needs and deserves a safe, affordable place to call home. Ensuring that all New Jersey residents can exercise their human right to housing requires bold investments and solutions. We’re eager to learn more about the budget proposals announced today, especially the pilot program that would encourage the development of affordable accessory dwelling units, which could help address our severe affordable home shortage.
  • New Jersey Working Families Party (interim State Director Antoinette Miles): New Jersey Working Families is pleased that Gov. Murphy has announced a budget that secures a dedicated funding source for NJ Transit by moving us toward tax fairness with a new Corporate Transit Tax targeting New Jersey’s megacorporations. We know that powerful businesses have strenuously opposed paying their fair share of taxes, and today’s announcement is an important step toward securing a bright future for our state’s public transit system and ensuring that it will be able to continue to provide mobility for working families traveling to work, doctor’s appointments and to see friends and family.
  • New Jersey Public Charter Schools Association (CEO Harry Lee): On behalf of New Jersey’s public charter schools and the 62,000 students we represent, I applaud Gov. Murphy’s continued commitment to education. His efforts to fully fund New Jersey’s education formula, including the proposed $11.7 billion in his FY2025 budget plan, have gone a long way towards meeting the educational needs of students across the state. Despite his dedication to significantly investing in education, New Jersey has yet to achieve equity in educational funding. Public charter schools, which serve 1 in 5 students in the Garden State’s most underserved communities, are in desperate need of facilities upgrades and renovations.

All this being said, some of these groups still had a wish list — one that includes the return of the CBT surcharge.


  • Working Families Party: The fight is far from over. The funding proposal Gov. Murphy laid out today fails to avert a crushing proposed (NJ Transit) fare hike that will increase congestion even as it drives up costs for working families. At the same time, this new proposal fails to secure long-term funding for other critical state programs that had previously received support through the now-expired Corporate Business Tax surcharge.
  • NJPP: This budget proposal still has some red flags that lawmakers will have to address. Even with a strong commitment to longstanding funding needs like pensions and schools, the budget proposal still erodes the state’s surplus to fund basic operations. Meanwhile, most programs that promote affordability for low- and moderate-income households like the Child Tax Credit and WorkFirst New Jersey received flat funding — a functional cut in a time of inflation. As New Jerseyans face down fare hikes and cost increases, the onus now shifts to the Legislature to commit to a full reinstatement of the corporate surcharge to make the state affordable for all.