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New and revised legislations affect every type of OCNJ business. Stay current on the newest laws and regulations pertaining to OCNJ commerce with these legislation reports.

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Learn About the State News Impacting Your Business 12/1/2020

New Jersey Business Update

Stock Up on PPE With New Discounts

Sign up for the NJ Economic Development Authority’s PPE Access Program to receive discounts on PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) purchases made through partnering online retailers: Boxed, Staples, & Office Depot.

  • All NJ Businesses are eligible for a 10% discount. 
  • Businesses and nonprofits with 100 or fewer employees can receive additional discounts up to 65%.

Apply for discounts by December 10, 2020, at covid19.nj.gov/ppeaccess.


Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Coronavirus Update for New Jersey Businesses 12/1/2020

Today's News for New Jersey Business:

Indoor sports ban applies to games and practices for youth, school and adult recreation. Some businesses resist Newark's 10-day lockdown. The stats are in: Travel was down on Thanksgiving 2020.

N.J.’s Indoor Sports Ban Applies to Games and Practices for Youth, School and Adult Recreation – All indoor organized sports at the youth, high school, and adult recreation levels – both games and practices – will be suspended for four weeks to battle the pandemic, Gov. Murphy announced Monday. It takes effect Saturday and lasts until Jan. 2. College and professional sports are not included. (nj.com) 

The Fine Print – Here are the new rules on indoor sports and outdoor gatherings. Outdoor gatherings are now limited to 25 people, with exceptions for wedding ceremonies, funerals, memorial services and religious and political events. Athletes, coaches, referees and other individuals that are necessary for a professional or collegiate sports competition are not counted towards the 25-person limit. 


Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Murphy Announces Additional $60M for Small Business Grants

Move Will Enable Funding of Approximately 13,000 Additional Grants
Gov. Phil Murphy announced a commitment of at least $60 million in additional Coronavirus, Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding to fulfillment of grants under Phase 3 of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority’s (NJEDA’s) Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program. This funding is in addition to $70 million in federal funds already allocated for the current phase of the program and will enable the NJEDA to fulfill grants for the entire pipeline of eligible businesses that applied for Phase 3 funding prior to the application deadline. Without this supplemental funding, approximately 13,000 of the nearly 22,000 businesses that applied for Phase 3 grants would have been declined based on the program being oversubscribed.
“COVID-19 is above all else a severe health crisis, but its economic impact has been incredibly difficult for New Jersey’s small business community,” said Governor Murphy. “Small business owners have been diligent in their efforts to protect the health of their employees and customers, and they deserve our support. This new round of funding will help ensure that many more businesses emerge from the pandemic stronger than before.
The NJEDA’s suite of COVID-19 relief programs provides a variety of resources for businesses of all sizes, including grants for small businesses, zero-interest loans, support for private-sector lenders and CDFIs, and funding for entrepreneurs. Its largest COVID-19 relief program is the Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program, which provides grants to small businesses impacted by the pandemic. To ensure equitable distribution of funds, the NJEDA set aside one-third of the funding for this program to support qualified businesses located in one of the 715 Census tracts that were eligible to be selected as a New Jersey Opportunity Zone. This targeting has helped to ensure minority- and women-owned businesses that were hardest hit by the pandemic’s economic impact were able to get the support they need.
To date, more than 22,000 small businesses have been approved for grants worth a total of more than $64.9 million through Phases 1 and 2 of the Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program. The average grant award has been roughly $3,000, which indicates the average approved business has three full-time equivalent employees.
Phase 3 significantly expands eligibility for the Grant Program and increases the amount of funding businesses can receive. Any business or non-profit located in New Jersey, including home-based businesses, with 50 or fewer full-time equivalent employees (FTEs) is eligible to receive grant funding during Phase 3, including businesses that received funding in previous phases of the program. To ensure funding goes to businesses hit hardest by the pandemic, Phase 3 sets aside funding for restaurants, micro-businesses, and businesses based in the state’s 715 Opportunity Zone-eligible Census tracts. The application period for Phase 3 grants closed earlier this week, and to date, 873 businesses have been approved for grants totaling more than $10.9 million.
“The NJEDA shares Governor Murphy’s commitment to supporting small businesses and we are delighted to be able to assist many more deserving businesses than anticipated,” said NJEDA Chief Executive Officer Tim Sullivan. “We continue to focus all available resources on processing grants and getting funding into the hands of hardworking small business owners as quickly as possible.”
“These additional EDA grants could not come at a better time,” said Senate President Steve Sweeney. “Small businesses have been hit hardest by the pandemic and are facing an uncertain winter with coronavirus infection rates spiking. These grants will help thousands of small businesses on city corners and suburban Main Streets stay open, keeping their employees on the payroll and providing the services their communities want and need.”
“Small businesses are the backbone of New Jersey’s economy. This funding is a critical lifeline as we face an alarming uptick in COVID-19 cases,” said Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin. “We must do all we can to ensure our small business community can weather the storm of this pandemic and be poised to thrive as we recover. I applaud Governor Murphy for allocating this CARES Act funding to these businesses which will also serve to keep more New Jerseyans working for their families.”
Sullivan noted that Governor Murphy has now allocated more than $250 million of funding to support small businesses through the COVID-19 crisis, with a significant focus on ensuring those dollars get where they are needed most – restaurants, micro-businesses, and minority- and women-owned firms.
In addition to the Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program, the NJEDA administers a variety of technical assistance and low-cost financing programs for small and mid-sized businesses impacted by COVID-19. More information about these programs and other State support is available at https://covid19.nj.gov.

Friday, November 6, 2020

N.J. Mandates COVID-19 Safety Rules for Workplaces

N.J. Mandates COVID-19 Safety Rules for Workplaces

Beginning November 5, employers that require or permit their workforce to be physically present at a worksite must abide by the following requirements, at a minimum, to protect employees, customers, and others who come into contact with its operations:


Monday, October 19, 2020

NJEDA Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program - Phase 3 Pre-Registration Now Open

NJEDA Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program - Phase 3 Pre-Registration Now Open
Information for Phase 3 of the NJEDA Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant
Mandatory Pre-Registration and Application Periods
Pre-Registration Opens at 9am EST on October 19, 2020 and Closes 5pm EST on October 27, 2020. To be Eligible for Phase 3 funding your business MUST pre-register. Access the Pre-Registration here.
Phase 3 of the Grant Program will likely be oversubscribed. To streamline the application process, the Authority is requiring all applicants to pre-register online. Applications will become available on a rolling basis following the pre-registration period. Pre-registered applicants will need to return to complete an application based on the following schedule:
  • Restaurants – 9:00 a.m. on Thursday, October 29, 2020
  • Micro businesses – 9:00 a.m. on Friday, October 30, 2020
  • All other businesses, excluding restaurants and micro businesses – 9:00 am on Monday, November 2, 2020
Applications for each category will be open for a period of one week will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.
To prepare for the pre-registration process, please review the Sample of the Pre-Registration Process.
Phase 3 Program Overview and Eligibility

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

SBA and Treasury Announce Simpler PPP Forgiveness for Loans of $50,000 or Less

The U.S. Small Business Administration, in consultation with the Treasury Department, today released a simpler loan forgiveness application for Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans of $50,000 or less. This action streamlines the PPP forgiveness process to provide financial and administrative relief to America’s smallest businesses while also ensuring sound stewardship of taxpayer dollars.


Friday, September 18, 2020

NJBIA Criticizes Decision to Raise Income Taxes as Policymakers Confirm They Weren't Needed to Fill Budget Gaps

This tax increase in exchange for suggested middle class relief is a gimmick that further verifies what we have said all along – increased taxes were always completely unnecessary as part of the FY2021 budget that already includes billions in bonding.

We note that the relief tied to this tax increase is undermined by other non-budget hikes for tolls and gas and other proposed taxes in the budget. Our taxpayers need real tax reform that includes property tax relief, while this does not really improve our overall affordability crisis or remove us from the edge of our fiscal cliff. 


Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Fix This Irresponsible Budget!

The proposed $40.1 billion budget Governor Murphy announced Tuesday morning simply does not reflect the stark reality of our times. And we need your help to convince the Legislature to fix it.

Instead of keeping expenses low for our taxpayers, Governor Murphy is raising taxes and making New Jersey businesses less competitive. Instead of holding the line on spending, Governor Murphy has proposed spending $1.4 billion more than the prior year, a 3.6% increase, and $5.4 billion (15.6%) more than the budget three years ago before he took office.


Monday, August 24, 2020

Action Alert - NJ Business Coalition Priorities for Congressional Delegation

Your action is requested.

We encourage you all to call our delegation members asap. DC and NJ contact info is below. Talking points are below and/or reference the letter (click here) when you reach out to our delegation members.

NJ Business Coalition Priorities for Congressional Delegation

·     Federal Assistance

·     New Jersey faces an unprecedented budget shortfall and, without federal assistance, the state will likely take action that would damage the state’s economic prospects including cutting costs by reducing expenditures on services our businesses rely on, increasing taxes on businesses and families, and borrowing billions of dollars.

·     Legislation such as the SMART Act, sponsored by our own Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Congresswoman Mikie Sherrill (D-NJ), which would allocate $500 billion to state and local governments, would help the state replace lost revenue and reduce the need for economically harmful measures.

·     We also urge your support on any legislation that would allocate federal funds to replenish state Unemployment Insurance Trust Funds, which will continue to be exhausted if high unemployment persists.


Wednesday, August 19, 2020

NJBIA, NJ Chamber of Commerce Issue Joint Statement on Reopening of NJ Businesses

Michele Siekerka, president and CEO of the New Jersey Business & Industry Association, and Tom Bracken, president and CEO of the New Jersey State Chamber of Commerce, issued the following statement today regarding a regional approach to reopening New Jersey businesses.

“It appears that deferring to industry experts and local officials for COVID-19 reopening decisions is the proper process, except when it comes to the reopening of our businesses.

“On Monday, Governor Murphy deferred decisions on fall sports to the NJSIAA, saying that, as experts, they know best. And, last week, the governor and the state Department of Health released guidelines for school reopenings, using data from six regions to inform local decisions and deferring to local health officials and school districts as the experts because ‘no one size fits all.’


Tuesday, August 11, 2020

NJ Business Coalition Urges Governor to Let New Jersey Reopen for Business  

With coronavirus numbers in the state declining, the New Jersey Business Coalition, a collection of more than 100 business and nonprofit groups, submitted a letter to Gov. Phil Murphy today urging him to end the “pause mode” of the reopening of New Jersey’s businesses.
The coalition’s Recovery and Reinvention Framework 2.0, a comprehensive update to the original framework issued in early May, points to improving numbers in reported cases, decreased hospitalizations and better capacity in the state’s healthcare facilities and strongly encourages a broader or regional reopening of New Jersey’s economy.

Monday, August 10, 2020

Days of Action - TODAY and TOMORROW

Good Morning Chamber Members:

Over the weekend, the US Chamber sent us some information and guidance for two Days of Action, asking us to reach out to our congressional representatives and push for liability protections and 501(c)(6) eligibility for PPP. Please join us in reaching out today and tomorrow.


Monday, August 10, 2020

Take Action: Tell Gov. Murphy to Veto Workers Comp Bill

We are reaching out to you once again with two asks related to the Workers Compensation legislation currently on Governor Murphy’s desk. This is a significant issue and we really need each individual organization to send a note to the front office opposing this bill. It is imperative that they hear from everyone individually.


Wednesday, July 22, 2020

NJ Health Benefits Premium Tax - URGENT ACTION NEEDED!

Businesses in New Jersey could face higher health insurance premiums under legislation introduced July 6 that would impose a new state tax on fully insured health insurance premiums. Ocean City Regional Chamber of Commerce opposes the bill.
S-2676 (Vitale, D-19) / A-4389 (McKeon, D-27), would impose a new 2.75% state excise tax on fully insured health insurance premiums for health benefits plans, MEWAs and dental and vision coverage. The bill is similar to a health insurance tax Gov. Phil Murphy proposed in his original FY 2021 budget proposal, which he put forth before the pandemic began in the U.S.

Friday, June 12, 2020

Return to Work Guidelines by NJDOL

Dear Chamber Colleagues: We just received the below information from the NJ Department of Labor regarding guidance for returning to work. The Commissioner will be unveiling this at the Governor’s press conference today. Return to Work Guidelines https://www.nj.gov/labor/assets/PDFs/returntowork_guidelines.pdf FAQs for Employers https://www.nj.gov/labor/employer-services/business/covid.shtml General FAQs: https://www.nj.gov/labor/worker-protections/covid_returntowork.shtml

Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Governor Murphy - Open our Amusements, NOW!

Please Help Us Urge Governor Phil Murphy to Fully Open Amusements! During the reopening of the state, this business segment has been overlooked and discriminated against – Amusements, Attractions, and Recreational Activities. It is safe and practical to begin reopening commercial recreational attractions. Help us urge Governor Phil Murphy to OPEN OUR Amusements! Strength comes in numbers! Please take a few seconds to support this petition. Thank you! Sign the Petition

Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Governor Murphy - Open our Businesses

Please Help Us Urge Governor Phil Murphy to Fully Open Boardwalk Businesses! We are working with Ocean City Boardwalk Merchants Association to urge the Governor to fully open Ocean City businesses. Strength comes in numbers! Please take a few seconds to support this petition.

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Update - Reopening & Recovery Plan

The Chamber previously released the Ocean City, NJ Reopening and Recovery Plan, which was derived from the comprehensive feedback of more than 100 Ocean City business owners.
The plan has been updated with survey results.
Please click the button below to read the plan.

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Governor Murphy - Open our Amusements!

Help us persuade Governor Murphy to open our amusements and attractions. Please share on your social media pages and tag Governor Murphy.

Monday, June 8, 2020

Our view: SJ businesses grow desperate as summer season starts without them

Our view: SJ businesses grow desperate as summer season starts without them
Press of Atlantic City 6/8/20
South Jersey business organizations have been trying hard to get Gov. Phil Murphy to see that the region is different than the COVID hotspot North Jersey shares with New York and deserves its own reopening plan.

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