Building A Stronger And Fairer Economy in New Jersey

We are a state of innovators.

From the incandescent light bulb to today’s groundbreaking cancer research, New Jersey has been and remains a place where human ingenuity flourishes. This ingenuity is made possible through our diversity. An international gateway with more than 20% of our residents coming from across the globe, our unique backgrounds help drive our communities forward.
Over the past decade, however, we have not made the most of our state’s assets. We have underinvested and insufficiently supported our families, students, workers, and businesses. As a result, New Jersey’s economy has experienced lagging economic growth and increasing inequality.

Our vision is to reestablish New Jersey as an economic and innovation leader: as a place where diverse talent, companies, and ideas flourish; where real pathways exist to the middle class; and where all residents can prosper in the economy. To unlock long-term and resilient economic growth, we must create a New Jersey economy that is both stronger and fairer.

Read the whole economic plan here.

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Economic Plan at a Glance
Economic Plan Progress

Five key goals to accomplish by 2025:

  1. Driving faster job growth over this period than all Northeast peer states by fostering a better, more supportive business climate
  2. Achieving faster median wage growth than all Northeast peer states
  3. Creating the most diverse innovation ecosystem in the nation and doubling venture capital investment in the state
  4. Closing the racial and gender wage and employment gaps
  5. Encouraging thriving and inclusive New Jersey urban centers and downtowns, with a focus on reducing poverty

Four strategic priorities:

  1. Investing in people to help all New Jersey residents prepare for and find work that supports and sustains families and investments in our future
  2. Investing in communities to build world-class cities, towns, and infrastructure statewide
  3. Making New Jersey the State of Innovation to harness the power of innovation to create more and better jobs across the state
  4. Making government work better to improve New Jersey’s competitiveness and business climate

Ensuring all New Jerseyans can succeed in the jobs of today and are well-positioned for the jobs of tomorrow

NJ Apprenticeship Network

An expanded NJ Apprenticeship Network will ensure all New Jersey residents have a path to enter high-skilled careers through paid, registered apprenticeships. NJ Apprenticeship Network will target underrepresented populations—including women and people of color—and fields to bolster our innovation economy (e.g., life sciences and technology) and traditional industries (e.g., building and construction trades).

Computer Science for All

Renewing New Jersey’s leadership in the innovation economy starts in our public schools. The Computer Science for All initiative will ensure every high school has access to an advanced computer science program.

NJ Career Network

NJ Career Network will improve access to lifelong learning and professional development opportunities for all residents through a revamped portal and programs, including state-of-the-art digital tools, coaching, and training services. NJ Career Network will provide greater support for our often overlooked residents, including the long-term unemployed, people with disabilities, and those who are currently or were previously incarcerated.

‘Future of Work’ Task Force

The ‘Future of Work’ task force will be a pioneering effort to bring together government officials, academics, corporate partners, labor union leaders, and communities to truly understand and assess the impact that technological advancement will have on our state’s residents. The task force will seek to develop new solutions for the emerging challenges our workforce faces.

Supporting the long-term investment in infrastructure and fostering vibrant places to grow New Jersey’s economy 

NJ Aspire Tax Credit Program

This new, place-based gap financing tool will help catalyze investments in commercial, residential, and mixed-use projects with a focus on cities, downtowns, and suburban neighborhoods served by mass transit.

Brownfields Program

A re-imagined Brownfields program will support remediation of contaminated sites in a more timely manner and boost local property values and improve local health outcomes in the process.

Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program

The State Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program will support private sector investment and the redevelopment of historic buildings across New Jersey.

Opportunity Zone Strategy

To facilitate responsible investments and ensure that New Jersey’s communities are included in decision-making, the Department of Community Affairs is developing a “One-Stop Shop” to help guide municipalities. The New Jersey Redevelopment Authority is identifying “Ready to Go” investment projects and the NJ EDA will work  to establish a digital marketplace to match businesses and entrepreneurs within Opportunity Zones to more easily make investments.

Harnessing the power of innovation to create more and better jobs across New Jersey

‘The Hub’

‘The Hub’, located in downtown New Brunswick, is an innovation center being developed by DEVCO in partnership with Rutgers. A meeting place for the best ideas from New Jersey’s leading universities and entrepreneurs, ‘The Hub’ will include more than 4 million square feet of mixed-use space supporting research, experimentation, and commercialization through targeted programs for startups and innovators.

New Jersey Innovation Evergreen Fund (NJIEF)

This landmark venture capital fund will accelerate the growth of investment in New Jersey. The NJIEF will raise capital by competitively auctioning state tax credits (over five years) to New Jersey corporations and partner with private venture capital firms to co-invest these funds. In partnership with the State, venture capital firms would make joint investments in New Jersey-based startups, targeting innovation sectors such as life sciences, financial technology, digital media, and cybersecurity. As the fund’s investments mature and experience exit events, the proceeds would flow back to the venture capital investors and to the NJIEF, providing a self-sustaining stream of funds to support future investments.

NJ Forward Tax Credit Program

The NJ Forward Tax Credit Program is a new, job-creation tax credit that focuses on high-wage, high-growth sectors. The program aims to increase the State’s focus on global/U.S. headquarters, R&D activities, and foreign direct investment. NJ Forward will prioritize new job creation, encourage job creation in urban centers and other distressed communities, include an annual award cap and review to ensure fiscal sustainability and transparency, and reward companies that invest in employee skill development and training.  

Wind Innovation & New Development (WIND) Institute

Leveraging our robust college and university system, corporate partners, utility providers, labor unions, and government agencies, the New Jersey Wind Innovation & New Development (WIND) Institute aims to create a state clearinghouse for education, research, innovation, and workforce training for the future of wind energy. The WIND Institute will also bring together government agencies to shepherd various components of the offshore wind industry through permitting processes, investment opportunities, and other regulatory or programmatic procedures involved in the development of offshore wind. 

Improving New Jersey’s competitiveness and business climate 

New NJEDA Small Business Loan Program

The new NJEDA Small Business Loan Program will enhance New Jersey’s lending environment and ensure that more small businesses — especially historically underrepresented small business owners — have the capital necessary to scale their operations in New Jersey. 

Chief Innovation Officer

The first-of-its-kind position in New Jersey state government, the Chief Innovation Officer will lead and implement world-class processes and technology solutions across state agencies. 

Permitting Modernization

To improve access to business services across the state, New Jersey will pursue an interactive digital permitting platform. The program will use technology to streamline outdated, cumbersome processes, while also providing the transparency and certainty businesses need to thrive in the new economy.