Among certified public accountants in the state, 7 out of 10 believe Gov. Phil Murphy's budget proposal will make the state's economy worse.

The CPA survey showed that just over 1 in 10 said New Jersey's economy would become better.

Ralph Albert Thomas, president of the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants, says most of the nearly 500 accountants surveyed say "some of the measures that were included in there, our members just felt we're not going in the right direction to get the state back on a solid footing."

"You know, New Jersey is still in a situation where it's trying to recover. It still hasn't recovered from the economic downturn that we had in 2008-2010, like other states have."

New Jersey Society of CPAs
New Jersey Society of CPAs

Thomas adds that many of the group's members continue to take a dim view of the $15-an-hour minimum wage.

"It is a noble gesture ... but you know, how are businesses going to react to that? And that's where we think that there were some missteps in terms of engaging stakeholders to understand how they would react to that ."

Thomas says higher minimum wage costs, paid sick leave and family leave mandates also hurt businesses.

"There's just so much that businesses can bear before they say, 'You know, it's time to pack up stakes and leave.'"

Joe Cutter is the afternoon news anchor on New Jersey 101.5

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