Lisa McCormick says Gov. Phil Murphy is a Wall Street millionaire who is out of touch but she says his worst offense is promising to do things people want and then doing the same bad things that were done by Chris Christie, Jon Corzine and other previous governors.
McCormick is asking voters to write in her name as their choice for governor in the Democratic primary election on June 8, arguing that residents have been poorly served by traditional politicians.
“Governor Murphy betrayed New Jersey voters,” said McCormick. “He said he would stomp out corporate welfare but he enacted a $3 billion subsidy to keep nuclear plants profitable and just three weeks after it was first introduced and fast-tracked through the state Legislature, he signed the New Jersey Economic Recovery Act of 2020, a $15 billion corporate welfare package.”
Murphy signed the $15 billion corporate welfare package after he called for an overhaul of the state Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) following an investigation that revealed billions of dollars worth of corporate welfare incentives were improperly awarded by the agency to benefit
After a bitter outcry involving tax incentives given out by the NJEDA, Murphy said the state “squandered” nearly $11 billion in tax breaks for corporations, many of which weren’t able to prove they created and retained the types of jobs that they promised.
Good government advocates condemned the Murphy-Norcross corporate welfare package.
“There is some transparency and reform in the bill, but they ironically pushed it through without time for proper oversight or public scrutiny,” said New Jersey Sierra Club Director Jeff Tittel. “This is a New Year’s gift to big corporations and the wealthy. Meanwhile, it is peanuts for small businesses and coal in our stockings for the rest of us.”
“The BPU sold out the ratepayers and renewable energy today by going along with this unnecessary nuclear subsidy,” said Tittel, of the nuclear subsidies enacted by Murphy over the objections of the state’s ratepayer advocate, the AARP and several renewable power generators. “This giveaway is about greed and not need.”
“The New Jersey Economic Recovery Act of 2020 is what you get when politicians look in the face of small business, taxpayers, and residents that have been ravaged by a pandemic and laugh,” said Jason Krychiw, an unemployed scientist living in Union Township who has been an outspoken progressive Democrat. “Anyone who voted for this chose corporations over people. Period.”
“With a stroke of a pen, New Jersey has chosen to repeat the mistakes of the past by giving away billions of dollars in corporate tax breaks,” said Brandon McKoy, president of New Jersey Policy Perspective (NJPP). “This is a bloated economic development strategy that has failed to work, not only in New Jersey but in every other state that participates in this costly race to the bottom.”
McKoy said that Murphy’s corporate tax breaks are on such a vast scale that they are likely to cheat taxpayers for decades to come.
“These super-charged programs will leave the state with far fewer resources for a robust recovery,” said McKoy. “It will also crowd out revenue in future budgets to invest in proven building blocks of a state economy, like education, health care, child care support, mass transit, and job training.”
Despite its name, McKoy charged there is “little to nothing” in Murphy’s law targeting small businesses or the state’s economic recovery from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“While a number of laudable reforms and innovative incentives are included in the Economic Recovery Act, its size and scope actually surpass that of the expired programs,” he said. “Simply put, size matters.”
“Instead, the New Jersey Economic Recovery Act mirrors some of the most egregious elements of the previous generation of economic incentives: overly generous tax subsidies for corporations that typically sell them for cash, a program design that favors businesses with the resources to navigate the application process, a deliberate disconnect between the NJEDA and the annual state budget, and a refusal to entertain the idea of a ceasefire agreement with neighboring states,” McKoy said. “New Jersey deserves better.”