We’ve talked several times about the potential negative impact of a $15 minimum wage in New Jersey. Ignoring all of the research on the negative economic effects in the states that have dramatically increased the minimum wage Murphy signed the $15 minimum wage bill today proclaiming “It is a great day to make some history for New Jersey’s working families. And that’s just what we’re going to do. We’ve talked long enough about putting New Jersey on a responsible path to $15 an hour minimum wage. Today we start our way on this path”. Murphy signed the bill at the Elizabeth headquarters of immigrant advocacy group Make The Road New Jersey. Murphy has made it clear that he is more interested in gaining votes for Democrats than he is New Jersey’s economy, jobs or the law abiding hard working residents of the state. Additionally Murphy seems to be doing everything he can to kill tourism at the Jersey shore.
Republican State Senator Kip Bateman commenting on the $15 minimum wage said in a statement that longtime businesses “that make our Main Streets unique” will be forced out of business, seasonal destinations like the Jersey Shore “will change forever” and large corporations and chains will replace entry-level jobs with kiosks and automated services. “I don’t think we have left our over-taxed and over-regulated business owners with any other alternative than to replace people with technology or close all together”.
Republican Assemblyman Hal Wirths the former state labor commissioner under Christie said the law ignores the “inevitability of a recession” and imposes labor costs small businesses can’t possibly afford.
On the same day that Murphy signed the bill to increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour his new law went into effect forcing property owners in New Jersey to charge 6.625% state sales tax and a 5% occupancy fee on short-term rentals. Governor Christie vetoed a similar bill in 2017. These taxes will add hundreds of dollars to the cost of a weekly rental along the Jersey Shore. Money that would have been spent in small businesses along the shore such as restaurants, retail stores and boardwalk attractions.
Based on the information I’ve read the average boardwalk job at the Jersey Shore currently pays $8 to $9 per hour. These employers will have to pay $6 to $7 per hour more per hour for the same jobs plus increased payroll taxes. Payroll costs will almost double for these small businesses! Get ready to pay $18 for a slice of pizza on the boardwalk. Enjoy your $12 ice cream. The $15 minimum wage plus the excessive short term rental tax will result in a significant decrease in visitors to the Jersey Shore as a week at the shore just became unaffordable for many families.
I have to ask again. Why does Governor Murphy hate the Jersey Shore?
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