As a city with many thriving small businesses, Trentonians know firsthand how much value our city’s entrepreneurs bring to our community. These businesses stimulate the local economy, create jobs for locals, and attract visitors from near and far. Recently, Governor Murphy announced the passage of exciting new legislation, assuring small businesses within this community and throughout New Jersey can continue to prosper in the Garden State.
This past week, Governor Murphy signed three bills into law to help further support New Jersey’s small business owners. These important pieces of legislation include:
- Creating a publicly available small business manual to provide information and guidance on establishing, maintaining, and expanding a small business
- Establishing a customer assistance metrics program to assist businesses in gauging what is and is not working in their favor
- Giving small business owners additional time to address minor violations
In passing this legislation, the State of New Jersey hopes to provide a more hospitable, supportive environment for entrepreneurs to grow and thrive. “Today, we underscore once again that economic opportunity is abundant and accessible in New Jersey, especially for the small businesses that line our main streets and undergird our local communities,” said Governor Murphy. “I thank Assembly Speaker Coughlin for leading the preparation of this comprehensive bill package, which will ensure that we continue to respond to the needs and concerns of small business owners as effectively as possible. This legislation will enable us to attract, retain, and inspire small businesses to expand in a state that remains at the national forefront of economic vitality and innovation.”
Per Assembly Speaker Craig J. Coughlin, “Helping New Jersey’s small businesses thrive and grow was one of the top priorities we identified at the outset of this session. These bills are essential to our efforts. We thank the Governor for signing these bills. We also appreciate the valuable insights provided by business leaders to the Assembly members who crafted this legislation. From mom-and-pop shops to our tech start-ups, small businesses contribute to the unique and defining character that make New Jersey communities the kinds of places people want to live and raise a family.”
This legislation, which comes at a time of economic uncertainty, will provide some much-needed relief and valuable insights to our state’s business owners. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, New Jersey is home to 937,456 small businesses and over 1.9 million small business employees. In total, 99.6% of enterprises in New Jersey are considered small businesses, and 49.5% of New Jersey workers are employed by small businesses. Spanning across all industries, these businesses represent the arts, educational services, real estate, manufacturing, and so much more. As such an integral part of the fabric of our state, when our businesses thrive, each and every New Jerseyan stands to benefit.
Lawmakers from throughout the state echoed this sentiment. “For small business owners, the fines associated with minor violations can be a significant setback,” said Assemblyman Roy Freiman. “By giving businesses the opportunity to fix harmless mistakes without being subjected to penalties, we make good on our commitment to create an environment that attracts new businesses to our State and allows those already here to prosper.” Senator Andrew Zwicker noted “Starting a small business and making a go of it, especially in that first year, can be daunting. Given our uncertain economic climate, even the most well thought out business plans can go awry. Fortunately though, there is useful information available to help new businesses navigate those challenges and gain a solid foothold for future success.”
New Jersey is open for businesses, and is taking great strides every day to assure the success of the entrepreneurs who call it home.