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Survey: N.J. business leaders negative on ACA, prospect of hosting another Super Bowl

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A majority of New Jersey's business leaders are negative toward Obamacare, worried about consumer spending, moderately optimistic about the state's economic forecast and down on the prospect of the Garden State playing host to a second Super Bowl, according to the latest ParenteBeard -New Jersey Chamber of Commerce Business Climate Survey released Wednesday.A

The biannual survey polled 101 business leaders across the state, the majority of which identified as either company presidents and CEO’s or senior level executives.

Though 39 percent of respondents said the Affordable Care Act has had no impact just yet, 32 percent claimed it already has hindered their businesses and another 20 percent added they expect it to hinder their businesses in the future.

“It’s no secret that business does not operate well in a climate of uncertainty and the rollout of Obamacare has been as uncertain as it gets, with rollout delays, spotty implementation and confusion over language,” Chamber President Tom Bracken said.

With 33 percent, business leaders cited consumer spending as their main concern over the next 12 months. Regulatory requirements, the main concern last year, came in second with 26 percent.

Bracken attributed the lessening concern of the state’s regulatory atmosphere to progress made by the Red Tape Review Commission.

Roughly 40 percent of respondents expect that by next winter, the state’s economy will be in “about the same” position it was this past winter. More, however, are optimistic about New Jersey’s economic outlook with 33 percent reporting they expect it to be “moderately better” compared with 20 percent who feel it will be “moderately worse.”

“New Jersey employers have been through a national recession, a slow recovery and major storms in recent years, yet a large majority remain optimistic,” Walter Brasch, ParenteBeard New Jersey metro region managing partner, said. “That bodes well for our continuing recovery.”

On the recently played Super Bowl at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, the bulk of respondents, some 42 percent, agreed that the game had no impact on the state’s reputation. Another 35 percent claimed there was a moderately positive impact, compared with 17 percent who reported it was moderately negative.

But when asked if New Jersey should once again host the big game, more than half of respondents, some 55 percent, were against the notion.

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Andrew George

Andrew George

Andrew George covers the Statehouse from NJBIZ's Trenton bureau. Born and raised in N.J., Andrew has also spent time as a reporter in D.C., Texas and Pa. His email is andrewg@njbiz.com and he is @AndrGeorge on Twitter.

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