Not good news for NJ. Despite all the recent headlines about New York City residents fleeing to the NJ suburbs during the COVID pandemic, it turns out that from March to July of 2020, seven out of ten households that are moving to or from NJ are LEAVING the state. According to a Bloomberg/United Van Lines study, 69% of households are leaving versus 31% moving in – the highest percentage of leavers in the country. Other big-government, high-tax, public-union-dominated states like NY, IL and CT are close behind NJ, suggesting a pattern.
But no one should think that this is just the impact of COVID. Even before COVID hit, UVL’s 2019 study showed that 68.5% of NJ movers were leaving versus 31.5% coming in. So there is something else at work: perhaps high taxes, high cost of living, fewer jobs, and an underperforming economy? And contra New Jersey Policy Perspective president Brandon McKoy, the households moving out had higher incomes than the ones moving in. This is a recipe for disaster for NJ.
And yet Governor Murphy wants to raise taxes more: on the wealthy, on financial trading firms, on corporations, on healthcare plans and on gasoline. So he can take care of his public-sector union political supporters (see SPCNJ’s blog “The NJEA Hits the Trifecta with Murphy’s Budget; the Rest of NJ, Not So Much“).
NJ is a great place to belong to a public-sector union, but the wealthy, retirees, private-sector working families, and even millennials are voting with their feet.