New Jersey’s five existing Urban Enterprise Zones scheduled to lose their designations on the first of the year would get a two-year extension under legislation scheduled for consideration in the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee today. The New Jersey Business & Industry Association (NJBIA) supports the bill.
The legislation accepts the Governor’s recommendation that the Commissioner of Community Affairs research potential alternatives. The bill then would provide a two-year extension of the UEZ program.
“The UEZ program has proven to be helpful to small businesses and downtown areas in cities that need economic development the most,” said Andrew Musick, NJBIA director of Taxation & Economic Development. “More effective alternatives may be found in the future, but until then, the UEZ program should continue.
“Urban Enterprise Zones were created for Main Street and have helped countless small businesses through the years,” Musick said. “Many of these communities are still struggling, so we think the program should remain until we find something to replace it.”
The five UEZ communities set to expire at the end of 2016 are Bridgeton, Camden, Plainfield, Trenton, and Newark. Businesses in UEZs are allowed to charge half of the state’s regular sales tax rate and receive incentives such as business-to-business tax exemptions, subsidies for unemployment insurance, and corporate-tax credits for hiring and investing.