Governor Phil Murphy

This Week in NJ: February 12th, 2021


Governor Murphy Highlights Brownfields Redevelopment Tax Credit, Launches Loan Program Supporting Brownfields Remediation

Governor Phil Murphy highlighted two programs that will support the transformation of contaminated brownfields into vibrant community assets. 

The Brownfield Redevelopment Incentive will provide tax credits to support brownfields remediation projects and the Brownfields Loan Program makes low-interest loans of up to $5 million available to brownfield redevelopment projects for all aspects revitalization, including assessment, investigation, and demolition. 

“Investing in communities is one of the pillars of our plan to bring about a stronger, fairer New Jersey,” said Governor Phil Murphy. “Supporting brownfields revitalization projects that transform dangerous, contaminated sites into valuable community assets is crucial to building vibrant neighborhoods and spurring equitable economic growth throughout New Jersey.”

“Transforming brownfields into productive properties is one of the more potent aspects of the incentive program,” said Senate President Steve Sweeney. “Changing contaminated land into job-producing projects has environmental, economic, and social justice benefits. The ability to attract and retain jobs and generate economic activity is an urgent need as we work to maintain our competitive edge during the coronavirus. We have to be resourceful and innovative in the face of one of the most challenging crises of our time.”

“These incentive projects are needed to spur business and job growth as we come out of a pandemic crisis that has devastated broad sectors of our economy,” said Senator Sarlo, Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee chair and co-prime sponsor of the program.  “Most importantly, it will provide tax incentives to attract the jobs we want – jobs that pay good salaries in industries that will transform communities, partner with our higher education sector on R&D, provide valuable job training and be good corporate citizens. These are investments in immediate needs and future opportunities.”

"Brownfield remediation and redevelopment is good for the environment and good for the community. Not only do we advance environmental justice but we improve neighborhoods and reinvent hazardous places into sites for economic development and job creation," said Senator M. Teresa Ruiz. "Legislation like the New Jersey Economic Recovery Act fosters innovative opportunities for us to reinvent our spaces to benefit all of our residents in all of our communities around the state."


Governor Murphy Announces Executive Order Allowing Limited Spectators at Youth Sporting Events

Governor Phil Murphy announced Executive Order No. 220, which enables indoor and outdoor youth sporting events to allow parents or guardians to attend practices or competitions. The executive order will take effect immediately.

“As a father of four, I know how difficult it has been for many parents to not be able to see their kids participate in sports,” said Governor Murphy. “With our metrics trending in the right direction, we feel comfortable taking this step and allowing parents back into youth sporting events.”


Governor Murphy Visits Vaccination Sites

Governor Murphy visited two vaccination sites this week: The Matheny School in Peapack-Gladstone, where students with special needs and staff are being vaccinated, and the Mary L. McLeod Bethune Life Center's Community-Based Vaccination Site in Jersey City.


Governor Murphy Announces Health Insurance Signups In New Jersey Surpass Previous Two Years

Governor Phil Murphy announced that health insurance signups through New Jersey’s new state-based marketplace surpassed the Open Enrollment Period for the previous two years in New Jersey. Plan selections for 2021 coverage increased 9.4 percent over last year’s Affordable Care Act Open Enrollment Period, as the state successfully expanded access to health coverage through its new state-based marketplace, Get Covered New Jersey, during its first open enrollment period.

The enrollment window remains open, and Governor Murphy and Department of Banking and Insurance Commissioner Marlene Caride are urging residents who still need coverage to explore their options at New Jersey recently joined the Biden Administration in announcing the opening of a COVID-19 Special Enrollment Period to allow residents who still need coverage to sign up for health insurance through Get Covered New Jersey until May 15, 2021.

“We are incredibly pleased to see more residents obtaining health coverage through our new state-based marketplace during this critical time period,” said Governor Murphy. “In line with the proactive steps taken by the Biden Administration, New Jersey recently expanded our enrollment window to ensure that our residents have ample opportunity to access the high-quality, affordable coverage that is so important to their health and wellbeing.”

“We are encouraged that we saw plan selections increase by 9.4 percent over last year, as we expanded the enrollment window and provided new financial help to most residents enrolling on the marketplace,” said Department of Banking and Insurance Commissioner Marlene Caride. “We are keeping open the enrollment window to give those who still need health insurance the opportunity to get covered now, rather than having to wait until next year to enroll in a plan.”



Governor Murphy Announces Health Insurance Signups In New Jersey Surpass Previous Two Years

In an effort to aid small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Phil Murphy and State Treasurer Elizabeth Maher Muoio announced that New Jersey will follow the federal government’s lead in allowing Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans to be tax exempt at the state level and enable recipients to deduct business expenses that were paid with the tax-exempt loan proceeds, thereby enhancing the tax benefits of the loans.

“This decision is designed to help already beleaguered small businesses, which are the majority of recipients of these loans,” said Governor Murphy. “It’s no secret that New Jersey has been one of the hardest hit states by COVID-19 and our small businesses have shouldered the brunt of it. PPP loans helped many stay afloat and this move will provide added benefit to help them weather this storm.”

The PPP was established by the federal CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act) last year in response to the economic impact of COVID-19 in order to help small businesses keep employees on their payroll during the pandemic. 

Of the 155,851 loans totaling $17.3 billion that New Jersey businesses received, the vast majority were for smaller businesses:

  • 133,961 loans totaling $4.6 billion were for amounts under $150,000; and
  • 19,066 loans totaling $6.6 billion were approved for amounts between $150,000 and $1 million.

“PPP loans have played a critical role in helping Main Street stay afloat and keeping residents employed,” said State Treasurer Elizabeth Maher Muoio. “Given that the vast majority of these loan recipients are smaller businesses, the decision to make these loans tax exempt and the proceeds tax deductible was a logical one as we continue to grapple with COVID’s prolonged impact.”