Subaru seeks break for move

TRENTON, N.J. – Subaru announced plans Friday to move its U.S. headquarters to Camden, just four miles from its current home in Cherry Hill, and said it is seeking $118 million in tax breaks intended to lure jobs to the impoverished city.

The move by the fast-growing division of the Japanese carmaker would be a coup for a city that is employing new methods to try to improve its schools, reduce crime and attract business in an attempt at resurgence.

“There’s more jobs, hopefully, for our city residents, and just to put us on the map,” Arthur Barclay, a Camden city councilman, said earlier this week.

The move would continue a bonanza of state tax breaks for businesses that have agreed to move into Camden with incentives offered in a state law adopted last year. In 2014, the state has awarded $500 million in future business tax credits for moves to the city.

Statewide, the breaks total up to $1.8 billion – the most in any year and more than the total the state awarded from 1996 through 2009.

That law, the Economic Opportunity Act, was adopted with bipartisan support in the Legislature and signed by Republican Gov. Chris Christie and includes special enticements for companies to move to Camden, where more jobs are direly needed.