State study of high-income earners exiting N.J. to be discussed at forum

TRENTON – The state said that next week its chief economist will outline the effects of high-income taxpayers leaving New Jersey.

The Treasury Department said that economist Charles Steindel will provide details of a study and survey during the Garden State Economic Forum Monday at the State Museum here.

The study estimates that state income tax collections were reduced by $150 million a year and that total adjusted gross income of the state fell by $3 billion between 2004 and 2009 because higher tax rates were linked to the departure of some high-income individuals, according to the Treasurer’s office.

According to Treasury, more than half of the survey respondents said clients left the state or expressed interest in leaving, with the top three reasons being:

State income taxes (85.4 percent); local property taxes (77 percent), and estate taxes (67 percent).

The study, based on federal tax data, suggests that while state income tax increases in 2004 and 2009 spurred increases in single-year revenues, tax collections were pressured downward over time because of wealthier earners leaving the state, Treasury stated.

State study of high-income earners exiting N.J. to be discussed at forum