What some of N.J.’s gubernatorial candidates are telling bankers

 The state Capitol in Trenton (Alan Tu/WHYY)

The state Capitol in Trenton (Alan Tu/WHYY)

The leading candidates in New Jersey’s governor’s race outlined some of their priorities at a New Jersey Bankers Association conference. 

Democrat Phil Murphy said small businesses need access to capital to grow and create jobs.

He said his proposed state-owned bank would invest money in community banks that would lend to businesses at favorable rates.

“The public bank will be there to ensure that more of the people and businesses who are qualified have access to the financial system. Right now, too many are left out.” 

Murphy said he believes his plan would help community-based banks thrive and prevent them from being taken over by larger banks. 

He said the state-bank idea is just part of his broader economic agenda but he believes it can make a difference.

Republican Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno said the GOP won’t take control of the legislature this year and worried that if a Democrat is elected governor the state can expect harmful laws.

“We need someone who will actually promise and then execute as I have for the last eight years, promise to lower the cost of doing business in New Jersey, promise to lower unemployment in New Jersey, promise to lower the regulations making it hard to do business in New Jersey.”

Republican Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli plans to overhaul school funding, reform public workers’ benefits, and change the state tax code. 

“There’s great danger in giving specifics. You’re used to platitudes, generalities, and rhetoric. I refuse to do that. It’s not my style.”

Ciattarelli said the state must invest in its infrastructure.

“As governor one thing I will do is put DOT, New Jersey Transit, and Motor Vehicles all under one roof. Motor Vehicles generates $1.4 billion a year. We can’t have that money go in the black hole known as the general fund.”

New Jersey’s primary election is June 6.

Candidates who have submitted petition signatures to qualify for the primary:

RepublicansKim GuadagnoHirsh Vardhan SinghJack CiattarelliSteve RogersJoseph Rullo

DemocratsMark ZinnaBill BrennanJim JohnsonRay LesniakJohn WisniewskiPhillip Murphy

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.