NFIB: Assemblies Promise to Fight for COVID-19 Relief for Small Businesses

Assemblies vow to fight for COVID-19 relief for small businesses


TRENTON, May 5, 2020 – As part of the Small Business Day, NFIB members here in New Jersey have taken on several issues that would be devastating for small business owners in the state.: the need for the state to use federal aid to replenish the $ 1 billion loss the state’s Unemployment Fund (UI) has suffered since the pandemic struck, granting significant protection in accountability to responsible small business owners, providing struggling small business owners with significant grants to help them recover from the pandemic and reopen the New Jersey economy.

“I know I don’t speak for myself alone when I say that the past 13 months have been some of the most difficult I have faced in my 33 years at the helm of my company. Numerous decrees issued by the governor have made the cure worse than the disease. Many of our political and media leaders continue to lump all things together as if we were all multinational corporations. Fortunately, the NFIB provides a way for us to collectively voice our opinion on legislation that is often detrimental not only to our businesses, but also to the millions of people we collectively employ ”. said Joe Olivo, small business owner and member of the NFIB. Olivo is the owner of the second generation small business Perfect Communications in Moorestown.

“Our Small Business Day 2021 was a wonderful opportunity for our small business owners to engage with their legislators,” said Eileen Kean, state director of the NFIB in New Jersey. “They need to hear from real people who are affected by what they do in Trenton. There are a few simple things they can do that would have an immediate and positive impact not only on New Jersey small business owners, but on the New Jersey economy as well. The way back from the negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic is to ensure that our small business owners thrive. “

“There is no better way to move government forward than to help small business owners. The state should help these hardworking entrepreneurs spend at least $ 300 on state programs that help small business owners. I support this legislation and I will fight in the Legislature to make it happen ”. said MP Brian Bergen. Bergen himself owns a small business. Seven years ago he founded Bergen Botanicals, an interior design company.

“On the issue of immunity, although I am a plaintiff lawyer, I am in favor of protecting small business owners who take reasonable precautions. You shouldn’t be responsible for the help. In my office, I have installed shields for all my paralegals and secretaries, but that is not enough. How do you defend yourself against a frivolous lawsuit? I do everything I can to help small businesses thrive in New Jersey ”, said Minority Leader Jon Brammick.

Here is the list of small business issues that the NFIB is pushing lawmakers to take action on:

Small business grants

  • Governor Murphy’s proposed budget for the state’s 2022 fiscal year includes an appropriation of $ 100 million to provide grants to small businesses.
  • • Previous New Jersey Economic Authority (NJEDA) programs to help businesses were immediately oversubscribed, excluding many small businesses from the process.
  • • The NFIB is urging lawmakers to spend at least $ 300 million on the fund as part of the budget they send to the governor.

COVID – accountability reform

  • • Legislation providing for corporate immunity from claims resulting from exposure to COVID-19 on business premises should be enacted.
  • • Immunity would be based on reasonable compliance in good faith with or exceeding applicable health and safety measures to prevent or mitigate a person’s exposure.
  • • The immunity would not apply to willful misconduct, reckless or intentional infliction of harm.
  • • Fear of a lawsuit is the last thing a small business owner needs while trying to stay afloat financially.
  • • NFIB urges lawmakers adopt COVID-19 liability protections to protect small businesses from frivolous lawsuits.

Reload the unemployment insurance trust fund

  • • New Jersey employers face a more than $ 1 billion UI payroll tax increase.
  • • The windfall from the New Jersey federal pandemic must be used to offset unemployment taxes that automatically increase when UI funds are depleted.
  • • The state’s economy will be boosted by promoting job growth by avoiding costly tax increases for businesses trying to rehire and retain employees.
  • • Unemployment insurance funding will ease the financial burden businesses already face and help them get back on their feet.
  • • The NFIB asks legislators allocate federal funds to top up the UI trust fund and avoid higher taxes

New Jersey COVID-19 Response

  • As of March 9, 2020, Governor Murphy has issued more than 100 Executive Orders (EOs) shutting down the state’s economy while disrupting and even destroying small businesses.
  • • Currently, there is no timeline for establishing normalcy. There is no plan to further open the dining room inside, restore pre-COVID-19 capabilities, allow non-essential workplaces to fire employees to the office or bring employees back from the office. State at work.
  • • Schools statewide never reopened in 2022, forcing parents to become teachers.
  • • Government actions have done little to restore consumer confidence to encourage retail shopping and other pre-COVID business experiences.
  • NFIB calls on lawmakers allocate federal funds to top up the UI trust fund and avoid higher taxes


For more than 75 years, the NFIB has advocated on behalf of independent American small business owners, both in Washington, DC and in all 50 state capitals. The NFIB is non-profit, non-partisan, and member-driven. Since our inception in 1943, the NFIB has focused exclusively on small, independent businesses, and so on today. For more information, please visit

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