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Speaker Coughlin’s senior tax cut proposal, StayNJ, is being fast-tracked through the Legislature — and a new NJPP report finds that it would disproportionately benefit the wealthiest households in the state while leaving many low-income seniors behind. Of those in the top one percent of households, 40 percent would receive a tax cut from StayNJ, while a mere 5 percent of those in the lowest-income 20 percent would benefit. This is due to the proposal’s lack of an income cap and exclusion of renters, who typically have lower incomes than homeowners. “It’s fair to design a system that continues to assist people at different income levels, but the bulk of the benefits should not be going to people at the higher end of the income spectrum,” said NJPP Senior Policy Analyst Peter Chen. [Gothamist / Nancy Solomon]
On Thursday, state Treasury officials announced that tax collections for May declined by 20 percent year-over-year, meaning the state collected $642 million less than in the same month last year. This means it will be harder for the state to balance its budget — especially with lawmakers poised to enact big tax cuts for corporations and wealthy homeowners. Also on Thursday, a new report published by the Steve Sweeney Center for Public Policy at Rowan University warned that the state could fall $12.5 billion short of meeting its current budget obligations over the next five years — and this doesn’t even consider the roughly $2 billion StayNJ senior tax cut proposal. “At least in my humble opinion, there’s no way the state could support the extraordinary spending that’s been proposed under StayNJ,” said Richard Keevey, former director of New Jersey’s budget office. [NJ Monitor / Nikita Biryukov]
Earlier this week, the Senate Budget Committee advanced legislation to overhaul the corporate tax code, despite opposition from state and national tax experts. The proposal would significantly lower state taxation of global intangible low-tax income (GILTI), a move estimated to cost the state $123 million annually. It would also make it easier for multinational corporations to hide profits in tax havens overseas. “As many corporate lobbyists have publicly stated, this overhaul of the tax code was drafted with extensive input from corporations and their tax law firms and accountants. But one group was missing from these discussions: the people of New Jersey, whose schools, transit infrastructure, and public services will lose out if corporations avoid paying their fair share in taxes,” said NJPP’s Peter Chen. [NJ Monitor / Nikita Biryukov]
New Jersey was one of the first states to enact a paid family leave program — but a new NJPP report finds that more than one in five workers lack job protection if they take leave due to a loophole in the state’s family leave laws. Even if a worker qualifies for paid family leave benefits, they may work at an employer that is exempt from providing job protection, leaving 840,000 workers at risk of being fired for taking family leave they’re entitled to. “All workers deserve the opportunity to bond with their children or care for their loved ones without fear of termination, demotion, or retaliation,” said Peter Chen. “Right now, hundreds of thousands of New Jerseyans do not have job protection, making paid family leave a risk they can’t afford to take.” [NJPP / Peter Chen]
NJPP is thrilled to announce the promotion of Louis Di Paolo to Vice President and the addition of Awinna Martinez as our new Policy Director. Join us in congratulating Louie and welcoming Awinna! [NJPP]
Pets of NJPP
Say hi to Lucy (aka Lulu), co-working pup of NJPP Policy Director Awinna Martinez! She loves to eat, sunbathe, and bark whenever someone is at the door or walking past the house. Here she is stationed at one of her favorite barking stations where she can see through the front door window for her shift as security detail. Woof!
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