Seventy percent of nearly 500 New Jersey CPAs polled by the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants in early March believe that Gov. Phil Murphy’s proposed budget for the 2020 fiscal year will make the state’s economy worse over the long term.
More than 38 percent of respondents said the state’s economy would become “significantly worse” and 32 percent said it would become “marginally worse.” Only 12 percent said it would be better and 17 percent said it would “stay the same.”
Of those who responded negatively, most cited Murphy not focusing enough on the amount of spending on public pension benefits in New Jersey in his budget proposal, high property taxes for both residents and businesses in the state, and implementation of the millionaire’s tax.
Meanwhile, those who felt more favorable about the impact of the Governor’s plan pointed to having increased revenues from the highest-income taxpayers as a means to raise necessary state funds, the need to reduce health care costs, and the prospect of tax revenue from the sale of legalized, adult-use marijuana.
The results are similar to a survey the NJCPA conducted last May when nearly 75 percent of the 786 CPAs who responded said that New Jersey’s economy would either get “significantly worse” – 44 percent – or “marginally worse” – 31 percent – over the long term under Murphy’s proposed budget plan for the state’s 2019 fiscal year.
Nearly half of the respondents – 47 percent – in the recent poll rated the state’s economy as “fair,” compared with 29 percent who described it as “poor” and 23 percent as “good.”
“Surveys like these show the true mindset of the business community in New Jersey. CPAs, as trusted advisors, are at the forefront of helping businesses grow, innovate and operate more efficiently,” said Ralph Albert Thomas, chief executive officer and executive director at NJCPA.