A measure sponsored by Assembly Democrats Wayne P. DeAngelo, Bonnie Watson Coleman, Pamela Lampitt, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Herb Conaway, Jr., M.D., and Dan Benson that aims to help businesses cut through red tape was re-approved Thursday 38-0 by the Senate and now heads back to Governor Christie’s desk to be signed into law.
The bill received final legislative approval in January but was conditionally vetoed by the governor with recommendations. The Assembly reapproved it in June by a vote of 78-0.
“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-Mercer/Middlesex). “There is still a lot of work that needs to be done, but the 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 State to create a uniform application for businesses to determine which state financial assistance programs they might qualify for.
The original legislation would have required the Treasury Department to create a uniform application that would determine a business’s eligibility for all of the state’s financial assistance programs. However, given the fact that the state maintains more than 50 grant and incentive programs, each with different eligibility criteria, the conditional veto recommended that the application be reworked to be less cumbersome but help identify which programs businesses may be eligible for and should apply to.
“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 help direct small business owners to the programs they should be eligible for and free them up 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).