A state lawmaker is citing chart-topping singer Adele's snub of New Jersey as a reason to pass his proposal to give tax breaks to A-list stars.
Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean says the fact that her upcoming tour bypasses New Jersey in favor of New York and Philadelphia proves the need for the state legislature to pass his bill. It would exempt stars who play at least four nights in Atlantic City from having to pay state income taxes on all shows in New Jersey that year.
Nicknamed the "Britney bill" for Kean's references to multi-night engagements that pop star Britney Spears has done in Las Vegas, the bill remains stuck in the Legislature. Maybe it will fare better with the "25" star's name associated with it.
Adele is scheduled to stage six performances in New York City, two in Philadelphia and none in New Jersey, Kean noted.
"New Jersey gets nothing from Adele performing eight shows in neighboring New York and Pennsylvania," he said. "New Jersey will continue to lose job and revenue growth in a wide variety of sectors from retail to restaurant to hospitality to transportation to tourism to communications" unless the bill is passed, he said.
The bill would exempt artists from state taxes not only on their Atlantic City performances but also on shows at New Jersey venues including arenas in Camden, Trenton, Holmdel and Newark.
Just who is an A-lister — and qualifies for the tax breaks — may require a delicate touch. New Jersey's secretary of state would set qualifications for the benefit, taking into account music and ticket sales along with awards the performer has won.
Adele has scheduled six-night stands in Los Angeles and New York, four nights in Toronto, and at least two nights in most other cities. It remains possible that additional tour dates might be added later.