States giving a second look to tax credit policies

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board Modified: September 19, 2013 at 7:11 pm •  Published: September 20, 2013

Business tax credits and incentives have been cussed and discussed an awful lot by Oklahoma lawmakers in recent years. State Rep. David Dank, R-Oklahoma City, has led the (mostly unsuccessful) push to eliminate or reform tax credits that don't provide a benefit for the state.

Dank has good company across the country.

In Maine, a task force will meet to see if $40 million in savings can be found in that state's tax incentives. Otherwise, Maine faces cuts to municipal revenue sharing. The head of the state Senate said it only makes sense to “look at what's working and what's not and align our tax incentives to our economy.”

A study conducted in North Carolina found that several of the state's business-related tax breaks were counterproductive. Lawmakers followed the study's recommendations by eliminating many tax incentives and instead lowering the state's individual, corporate and business tax rates.

A study presented at a recent webinar hosted by the National Conference of State Legislatures and the Pew Charitable Trusts showed that results of Minnesota's tax incentive program often weren't as good as advertised. In addition, “incentives sometimes subsidized some businesses that compete with other Minnesota businesses for the same customers and employees,” reported.

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board
The Oklahoman Editorial Board consists of Gary Pierson, President and CEO of The Oklahoma Publishing Company; Christopher P. Reen, president and publisher of The Oklahoman; Kelly Dyer Fry, editor and vice president of news; Christy Gaylord...
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