The climate for the state’s businesses has improved as efforts to establish a more efficient and business-friendly regulatory environment, streamline government, and cut costs for companies have made progress over the past year, according to a Red Tape Review Commission report released today.
“For business, onerous and burdensome red tape is like death by a thousand paper cuts,” said Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, who chairs the commission, in a prepared statement. The report, she added, “outlines future steps to further reduce the regulatory burden on business and make it easier for them to grow and hire workers.”
One commission member, state Sen. Steven V. Oroho (R-Sparta), said certain aspects of the commission’s work aren’t easily quantified.
“Sometimes the most important work you’ve done is what you have been able to stop from becoming a burdensome regulation, and that’s hard to measure,” Oroho said.
In the coming year, one of the commission’s focuses will be on state government procurement processes, Oroho said.
“One of the key areas is going to be bidding and contracting aspects, because that affects government and private industry,” he said.
Commission member John Galandak, president of the Commerce and Industry Association of New Jersey, said pubic hearings and comments have been an integral part of the reform process, and at least one of the forums to be held early this year will be focused on energy and infrastructure.
“It’s such a critical component of the state’s economy and our ability to do business,” Galandak said.
Though the commission, created in 2010, has worked to reduce or eliminate restrictive and costly rules and regulations, work remains, Guadagno said in her introductory letter to the report.
Another focus for the commission will be examining obsolete permits and outdated and confusing laws. For instance, the commission cited what it called an “antiquated” requirement that bus operators file a 20-page application for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity that it says provides no public benefit, and an “outdated” law requires small hotels with 10 or fewer rooms to keep a guest register.