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A measure sponsored by Assembly members Wayne P. DeAngelo, Bonnie Watson Coleman, Pamela Lampitt, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Herb Conaway, Jr., M.D., and Dan Benson, which is aimed at helping businesses cut through red tape, has been approved by the full Assembly and Senate.

The bill (A3195), approved by a vote of 66-11-1 in the Assembly, is part of the overall “Back to Work NJ” effort to create jobs and spark economic recovery. It now heads to the Governor for his signature.

“As we drive around our communities, we see too many empty shopping plazas with ‘for rent’ signs in their windows for extended periods of time. It is a daily reminder that we need to work with the business community to help get people employed again,” said DeAngelo (D-Hamilton). “There is still a lot of work that needs to be done, but the recent approval of this measure is a step in the right direction toward revitalizing our communities.”

The measure would cut red-tape by requiring the Department of Treasury to create a uniform application for state business grants or loans. A “universal” application form would eliminate duplicative paperwork and forms that small businesses must complete when applying for eligibility under state financial assistance programs. The EDA currently has a joint form on its website, but it does not cover all state financial incentive programs, which all have separate applications associated with them.

“This is one of the simplest and most effective ways we can help small businesses get established in New Jersey,” said Watson Coleman (D-Mercer). “In this tumultuous economy businesses are in need of every bit of assistance to get up and running, but often times the red tape can be so overwhelming for a small operation.”

“It’s important that we work together to create common sense proposals that can provide financial incentives for small businesses to establish and flourish,” said Lampitt (D-Camden). “Cutting through bureaucratic redundancies and red-tape will mean healthier small businesses creating more and better jobs for New Jerseyans.”

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, there were 27.5 million small businesses in the country in 2009.

“State programs often require the same information about the small business which makes applying for various programs far too time consuming. This measure will free up small business owners to focus their time on running their business,” said Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen).

“Considering that nearly two-thirds of the new jobs created in the U.S. between 1993 and 2009 were from small businesses, this is a smart way to trigger job creation in New Jersey,” said Conaway (D-Burlington/Camden).

“This streamlined application will enable small businesses to more easily access state financial assistance programs, in turn helping to stimulate the economy as these businesses are then able to invest in their development, workforce, and facility,” said Benson (D-Mercer/Middlesex).