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New Jersey Plans to Enhance Paycheck Protection Program Loans as January Tax Collections Edge Up

While New Jersey tax collection figures edged up in January, state officials announced they would follow the federal government’s lead in enhancing benefits of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).

January revenue collections for the major taxes jumped 0.3% to $4.1 billion in the Garden State when compared to January 2020, representing a $10.3 million jump.

Meanwhile, Gov. Phil Murphy and Treasurer Elizabeth Maher Muoio noted the state would allow the PPP loans to be tax exempt at the federal level.

“It’s no secret that New Jersey has been one of the hardest hit states by COVID-19 and our small businesses have shouldered the brunt of it. PPP loans helped many stay afloat and this move will provide added benefit to help them weather this storm,” said Murphy in a written statement.

January Tax Collections

Year-to-date, total tax revenue collections reached $18.75 billion, up 4.4.% compared to the same seven months of 2020. The total was up $793.3 million.

Collections for the Gross Income Tax (GIT) totaled just under $2.2 billion, down $165.4 million, or 7%, from last January, with to-date GIT collections reaching $8.0 billion.

The Sales and Use Tax reported collections of nearly $1.2 billion during the month, up 5% from the prior year.

Meanwhile, the Corporate Business Tax (CBT) reported collections of $179.5 million in January, representing an 18.8% fall from January 2020. Year-to-date collections reached $2.0 billion, down 2.2% from the same period in 2020.

Small Businesses

The PPP, established under the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act , provided small businesses with loans to ensure employees remained on payroll during the pandemic. The loans are forgivable when certain conditions are met.

Of the 155,851 loans totaling $17.3 billion that New Jersey businesses received, the vast majority were for smaller businesses:

  • 133,961 loans totaling $4.6 billion were for amounts under $150,000; and
  • 19,066 loans totaling $6.6 billion were approved for amounts between $150,000 and $1 million.

“PPP loans have played a critical role in helping Main Street stay afloat and keeping residents employed,”said Muoio in a press statement. “Given that the vast majority of these loan recipients are smaller businesses, the decision to make these loans tax exempt and the proceeds tax deductible was a logical one as we continue to grapple with COVID’s prolonged impact.”

Daily Data

On Feb. 19, the cumulative number of confirmed coronavirus cases in New Jersey reached 678,306 with 2,679 total new PCR cases reported. There were 593 probable cases, bringing the cumulative total of antigen tests to 83,192. The total number of individual cases for the state is 761,498. Gov. Murphy previously noted there is some unknown overlap due to health officials urging those taking a rapid test to get a PCR test.

As for those that have passed, the state reported 64 new deaths, bringing that total to 20,495. The state listed probable deaths at 2,289, bringing the overall total to 22,784. State officials noted 33 deaths occurred in the last 24 hours of reporting that have not yet been lab confirmed.  

For North Jersey counties on Feb. 19, Bergen had a total of 276 new confirmed cases and 79 probable cases, Essex 235 new cases and 41 probable cases, Hudson 267 new cases and 42 probable cases, Morris 149 new cases and and 39 probable cases, Passaic 195 new cases and 41 probable cases, Sussex 46 new cases and six probable cases, and Warren 21 cases and three probable cases.

State officials have identified a total of 50 cases of the B117 UK coronavirus variant in 11 counties in New Jersey, including seven in Essex County, four in Morris County, and two each in Hudson, Passaic and Warren counties.

Of the total confirmed deaths in North Jersey, Essex County has the most with 2,368, followed by Bergen at 2,303, Hudson with 1,788, Passaic at 1,491, Morris at 878, Sussex at 206 and Warren County at 192.

In regards to probable deaths reported Feb. 17, Bergen has 280, Essex has 266, Morris has 225, Hudson has 177, Passaic has 169, Sussex has 62 and Warren has 19.

State Testing 

The daily rate of infections from those tested as of Feb. 15, was 7.6%; by region, the rate was 8.1% in the North, 7.4% in the Central region and 6.4% in the South. The state is no longer using serology tests as health officials explained those results show a past presence of the disease as well as a current one. 

As for the rate of transmission, it remained unchanged for the third day in a row at 0.91. Officials have continually cited transmission rate and positivity rate as health data they rely on to track how the coronavirus is being contained in New Jersey, guiding them in determining when restrictions have to be tightened or lifted.

Officials reported 2,202 patients were hospitalized; 2,028 cases were confirmed and 174 are under investigation. By region, there were 1,071 in the North, 737 in the Central and 519 in the South.

Of those hospitalized, 443 are in intensive care units and 300 on ventilators. A total of 323 patients were discharged, while 216 were admitted.

Bergen Tops County Count

Bergen has the most confirmed cumulative cases in the state with 66,074, followed by Middlesex at 65,532, Essex at 65,234, Hudson at 61,386, Passaic at 50,849, Ocean at 50,020, Monmouth at 49,454, Union at 47,596, Camden at 38,484, Morris at 30,787, Burlington at 29,988, Mercer at 25,461, Gloucester at 20,501, Atlantic at 19,058, Somerset at 17,959, Cumberland at 11,742, Sussex at 7,661, Warren at 6,051, Hunterdon at 6,005, Salem at 4,121, and Cape May at 3,536.  

In regards to probable cases, Bergen had the most at 8,052, followed by Union at 7,433, Ocean at 6,253, Essex at 5,944, Morris at 5,290, Hudson at 5,330, Monmouth at 5,013, Atlantic at 4,851, Middlesex at 4,747, Passaic at 4,559, Camden at 4,558, Burlington at 4,242, Somerset at 3,978, Cape May at 3,366, Gloucester at 3,101, Cumberland at 2,129, Mercer at 1,554, Sussex at 1,089, Warren at 685, Hunterdon at 610, and Salem 455.

Another 807 cases are still under investigation to determine where the person resides.

In regards to cases related to in-school transmissions, a total of 142 outbreaks involving 671 cases, with two new outbreaks accounting for 15 cases reported in the weekly update on Feb. 17. 

For North Jersey, Bergen County has 32 confirmed outbreaks with 129 cases, Passaic County has seven confirmed outbreaks with 32 cases, Sussex has six confirmed outbreaks with 15 cases, Warren has eight confirmed outbreaks with 20 cases, Hudson and Morris Counties have two confirmed outbreaks with 10 cases each, and Essex County with one confirmed outbreak with 92 cases.

Long-term Care Facilities

Health officials noted 379 long-term care facilities are currently reporting at least one case of COVID-19, accounting for a total of 13,920 of the cases, broken down between 6,899 residents and 7,021 staff. 

Cumulatively, 1,250 long-term care facilities reported a case infecting 32,148 residents and 20,842 staff, for a total of 52,990 cases. 

The state’s official death total will now be reported as those that are lab confirmed, sits at 7,873 on Feb. 19. The facilities are reporting to the state 7,802 residents deaths and 143 staff deaths.

Vaccine Distribution

The number of COVID-19 vaccines administered in New Jersey totaled 1,559,569 as of Feb. 19. Of those who have received the vaccine, 1,102,687 residents have received their first dose with 456,045 their second; 55% have been administered the Moderna vaccine and 45% the Pfizer. 

Demographically, 59% of those vaccinated are women and 41% men. As for ethnicity, 53% are White, 17% unknown, 15% other, 6% Asian, 5% Hispanic and 4% Black. In regards to age of those having received the vaccine, 40% are 65 years old or olders, 27% are between the ages of 50-64, 25% are between the ages of 40-49, and 8% are between the ages of 18-29.  

In North Jersey, Bergen County has delivered 175,879 doses, Essex 128,947 doses, Morris 113,805 doses, Passaic 69,558 doses, Hudson 71,093 doses, Sussex 24,064 doses, and Warren 14,552 doses. 

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