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New Jersey Incentives and Workforce Development Guide

Visit Real Street's website to learn more about this event. The updated New Jersey incentives guide is brought to you by Real Street Expo, a new event sponsored by Business Facilities and Today’s Facility Manager magazines.

For a list of New Jersey economic development agencies that can help with the site selection process, visit our Online Site Seekers’ Guide.

New Jersey Partnership for Action:
Created by Governor Christie and led by Lt. Governor Guadagno, the Partnership for Action is a four-pronged public-private approach for all economic development activity in New Jersey and the starting point for all initiatives, policies and efforts to grow New Jersey’s economy and create quality, sustainable jobs in our communities. The four elements of the Partnership include:
  • Choose New Jersey, an independently funded and operated 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation created to encourage and nurture economic growth throughout New Jersey;
  • the Business Action Center, which reports directly to the Lt. Governor and provides the business community with a single point of contact, applying a proactive, customer-service approach to businesses’ interactions with State government;
  • the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA), serving as the state’s financing arm; and
  • the office of the Secretary of Higher Education.
New Jersey Economic Opportunity Act of 2013:
Signed into law in Sept. 2013, it merges the State’s economic development incentive programs with the goal of enhancing business attraction, retention and job creation efforts and strengthening New Jersey’s competitive edge in the global economy.

EDA is no longer accepting applications for assistance under the Business Employment Incentive Program (BEIP), Business Retention and Relocation Assistance Grant Program (BRRAG), and Urban Transit Hub Tax Credit Program (UTHTC).

More information on the Economic Opportunity Act can be found via www.njeda.com. EDA expects to formally launch the new programs in November 2013.

Financing

Economic Redevelopment and Growth Program (ERG):
The State’s key developer incentive program. Through the new ERG, incentive grants are increased, with bonuses of 10% available to incentivize targeted development goals. ERG also has expanded geographic boundaries.
Bond Financing:
A creditworthy manufacturing company, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization or an exempt facility in New Jersey can apply for long-term financing under the Bond Financing Program. $500,000 to $10 million in tax-exempt bonds for for-profit companies, with both a fixed or variable interest rate, and terms up to 20 years for real estate and 10 years for equipment. Or, $500,000 with no dollar limit in tax-exempt bonds for qualified not-for-profit organizations.
  • Tax-exempt bonds for eligible for-profit companies can be used to finance capital improvements and expansions, including real estate acquisitions, new equipment, machinery, building construction and renovations.
  • Tax-exempt bonds for not-for-profit organizations seeking capital to expand community services can be used to finance land and building acquisitions, new construction and renovations, equipment purchases, debt refinancing and working capital.
  • Government tax-exempt bonds can be used for projects that are owned and operated for the benefit of local, county and state government bodies.
Small Business Fund:
An expedited approval process provides financial assistance to qualified businesses through direct loans or guarantees, with the choice of a variable or fixed interest rate. A small, minority-owned or women-owned business in NJ in operation for at least one full year or not-for-profit corporation in operation for at least three full years may qualify for up to $300,000 for credit scores greater than or equal to 700; up to $125,000 for credit scores greater than or equal to 650; and up to $300,000 for Not-for-Profits with 1.1X historical debt service coverage. It may be used for fixed assets and working capital.
New Jersey Business Growth Fund:
A joint program of the EDA and PNC Bank. Small or mid-sized companies that are creating or retaining jobs in NJ can apply for financing of up to a $3 million bank loan with a 25% or 50% EDA guarantee. The maximum EDA guarantee is $1.5 million. It can be used for the funding of real estate or equipment. Companies must commit to create one full-time job in NJ for every $50,000 of guarantee provided by the EDA with the exception of manufacturers, which must commit to maintain one existing full-time job in New Jersey per $50,000.
Edison Innovation Clean Energy Manufacturing Fund (CEMF):
Provides support for manufacturers that need to identify a manufacturing site, perform site improvements, construct a facility and/or purchase equipment. Organizations awarded a grant under CEMF are automatically certified as a NJ manufacturer through New Jersey’s Renewable Energy Manufacturing Incentive (REMI) program. A qualified manufacturer of Class I renewable energy or energy efficiency systems, products or technologies may be eligible for up to $3.3 million in grants and loans for project assessment and design, and project construction and operation associated with a new manufacturing line or the material expansion of an existing line of a New Jersey manufacturing facility.
Renewable Energy Manufacturing Incentive (REMI):
Program that provides rebates to New Jersey residents, businesses, local governments and not-for-profit organizations that purchase and install solar panels, inverters and racking systems manufactured in NJ.
New Edison Innovation Fund Programs:
The Christie Administration announced three new programs in August 2011 to support emerging companies that have attracted capital through angel and venture capital investors:
  • Edison Innovation Angel Growth Fund;
  • Edison Innovation VC Growth Fund; and,
  • Edison Innovation Growth Stars Fund;

All three programs are structured as subordinated convertible debt and benefit technology and life sciences companies by providing growth capital to directly fund uses such as hiring key staff, product marketing and sales. In Feb. 2013, Phone.com, a tenant at NJIT’s Enterprise Development Center, closed on a $600,000 loan through the Edison Innovation VC Growth Fund. The Newark-based business is a next-generation, cloud-based phone company focused on the needs of small business and entrepreneurs. Phone.com, which expects to add 18 new employees to its staff of six, was recently recognized by INC500 as one of the fastest growing telecom companies in the United States.

Main Street Business Assistance Program:
Provides financial support to commercial banks in New Jersey to provide financial assistance to small and mid-sized businesses and not-for-profit organizations with projects in NJ. It can provide direct loans, bank term loan participations and/or guarantees and line of credit guarantees for small or mid-sized business or not-for-profit organizations in operation in NJ for at least two years. Can be used for fixed assets, refinancing of debt or working capital.

Tax Incentives

Grow New Jersey Assistance Program (Grow NJ):
The main job creation incentive program. Base tax credits under the new Grow NJ program range from $500 to $5,000 per job, per year with bonus credits ranging from $250 to $3,000 per job, per year. The geographic boundaries have been extended, and capital investment and employment eligibility requirements have been reduced.
Sales and Use Tax Exemption Program (STX):
Offers companies a sales tax exemption certificate which applies only to property purchased for installation at the approved project site. This certificate allows the business to purchase machinery, equipment, furniture, fixtures, and building materials for the project without the imposition of the state’s 7% sales tax. Eligible companies must have 1,000 or more employees in New Jersey and relocate 500 or more to a new business location. Life sciences or manufacturing companies may be eligible if they relocate 250 or more employees to a new facility. Companies must maintain the retained full-time jobs in New Jersey for five years.
Angel Investor Tax Credit Program:
Signed by the Governor on Jan. 31, 2013 and launched by the EDA on July 1, 2013, it provides tax credits for up to 10% of a qualified investment in an emerging technology business with a physical presence in New Jersey and that conducts research, manufacturing or technology commercialization in the state. EDA approved the first investment on 8/13/2013.

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About The Author

Schwartz joined Group C Media in April 1989 as managing editor of Today's Facility Manager. In September 2012, she transitioned to a new role dedicated to developing online content for Business Facilities and Today's Facility Manager. Schwartz can be reached at [email protected]

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