A couple of just-released reports suggest that more people want out of the Garden State state than in.

An analysis of Internal Revenue Service data finds outmigration cost New Jersey billions of tax dollars once again during 2017-2018, and the do-it-yourself moving company U-Haul ranks New Jersey 44th among the states in terms of growth, with the state registering a slight net loss for 2019.

New Jersey recorded an inflow of $8.3 billion in income tax returns in 2017-2018, compared to an outflow of $11.5 billion during the same period, according to the analysis of IRS data by the New Jersey Business & Industry Association.

The state's total net loss in Individual Income Tax Return Adjusted Gross Income tops $28 billion dating back to 2004-2005, NJBIA said.

"We are concerned because this outflow of (adjusted gross income) represents our potential workforce," said Nicole Sandelier, NJBIA's director of economic policy research. "When individuals are leaving the state, our businesses on the flip side then have the trouble of filling in the gaps of people who are leaving."

More than 40% of the outmigrated adjusted gross income, NJBIA found, went to "New Jersey's regional competitors" — New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Massachusetts, Delaware and Connecticut. The Garden State actually experienced a positive adjusted gross income inflow from New York and Connecticut, the data show.

"Not only does New Jersey need to be competitive and affordable for our businesses, but it also needs to be competitive and affordable for the individuals who live here," Sandelier said.

Measuring the number of one-way U-Haul trucks entering a state versus leaving a state, U-Haul found that departures from New Jersey increased in 2019 by 9%, and arrivals into the state increased by a slightly less 8%, compared to 2018. With arrivals accounting for 49.6% of one-way U-Haul traffic, New Jersey ranks 44th among the states.

Jersey City saw the biggest gains, according to U-Haul's data. Other notable cities to see a net increase include North Brunswick, Newark, Brick and Plainfield.

After sitting at No. 2 for three years, Florida topped Texas as the top growth state in 2019, the U-Haul report found.

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Contact reporter Dino Flammia at dino.flammia@townsquaremedia.com.

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