Friday Facts and Figures is a weekly newsletter with data points, analysis, and commentary on the biggest policy debates in New Jersey and beyond.
Sign up here.
New Jersey’s revenue collections will take a $2.2 billion hit through the end of the next fiscal year, according to new estimates by the State Treasurer released earlier this week. The lower forecast includes $1.2 billion less for the current fiscal year that ends June 30, and $1 billion less in the upcoming year. This will make it harder for lawmakers to balance the budget, maintain a healthy surplus, and continue investments in education, infrastructure, and so much more. While the Treasurer delivered the bad news to lawmakers, workers and advocates from For The Many NJ rolled out a 500-plus foot tarp outside the State House to symbolize profits made by big corporations that would benefit from the proposed $1 billion corporate tax cut. [NJ.com / Derek Hall]
In an op-ed that ran earlier this week, Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop came out in full support of keeping the Corporate Business Tax surcharge, saying it’s not nice to have but necessary to fund investments in public infrastructure and programs we all rely on. Mayor Fulop points out that big, multi-national corporations would benefit from the proposed corporate tax cut, not Mom-and-Pop shops, and that businesses are doing fine with the tax in place: “The CBT has been a win-win as corporate citizenship should be a two-way street — if you are making enormous profits from doing business in our state, you should be helping to pay for the schools, buses, and houses that those residents need.” [NJ.com / Steven Fulop]
New York recently expanded its film tax credit program, raising individual incentive amounts and increasing the overall program to $700 million a year. Lawmakers across the river are now considering expanding New Jersey’s tax credit program to compete, the latest move in a race to the bottom where Hollywood studios win and the rest of us lose. Study after study shows that film tax credits do not generate the jobs and economic growth they promise — but they do come at a real cost to the state. “In order to keep up you have to give away more and more,” said NJPP’s Peter Chen. [NorthJersey.com / Daniel Munoz]
Legislation to fund community crisis response teams advanced through the Assembly Public Safety Committee earlier this week. The bill would allocate $10 million to fund teams trained to defuse mental health crises and connect residents to the care they need. The bill — sponsored by Assemblymembers Spearman (D-Camden), Sumter (D-Passaic), and Reynolds-Jackson (D-Mercer) — was introduced in March after Paterson police shot and killed Najee Seabrooks while he was experiencing a mental health crisis. Bre Azañedo of Black Lives Matter-Paterson testified in support of the bill, highlighting the very real dangers of armed police responding to emergencies they are not equipped to respond to. “It has been proven time and time again that when Black and brown people call the police, we are putting ourselves at risk,” Azañedo said. [NJ Monitor / Dana DiFilippo]
NJPP’s Alex Ambrose joined Chat Box with David Cruz to break down why congestion pricing is a good thing — and how we will all benefit from less air pollution and less traffic. Alex also made an important point that a *very* small percentage of commuters who drive into downtown Manhattan will pay the congestion tax, and that the best thing New Jersey can do to respond is to invest in NJ Transit. The clip starts at 8:53. [NJ Spotlight News / David Cruz]
TikToks of NJPP
In a new TikTok, Alex Ambrose takes us on a tour of a new electric bus garage and charging station in Camden. Click the link for a recap of Alex’s trip, from her morning coffee to a tour of the garage to a ride on a new electric bus! [NJPP]
Have a fact or figure for us? Tweet it to @NJPolicy.