BATON ROUGE, LA (April 10, 2017) – Today the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry (LABI) released a policy memo that clearly shows the state’s businesses are indeed paying their “fair share” of taxes. As the Legislature convenes today to consider new tax proposals, LABI outlines all of the taxes that business is already paying in Louisiana, which is a larger share of taxes than the national average.
Last month, Governor John Bel Edwards claimed 129,000 of 149,000 corporate tax filers paid no taxes to the state, yet he neglected to mention that the Department of Revenue data shows that 48,000 of these filers paid taxes as S-Corporations on their personal income tax returns, not corporate. Further, all 149,000 filers were still subject to the franchise tax.
“The current rhetoric ignores the facts,” according to LABI’s Senior Vice President and memo author Camille Conaway. “National reports show that employers in Louisiana pay 41% of all state taxes and 59% of local taxes, representing nearly half of taxes collected in Louisiana. Across the country, by contrast, businesses pay 44% of state/local taxes. The state is currently ranked 41st for the business tax climate due to a complex code, high rates, and uncompetitive forms of taxation.”
In addition to individual and corporate income tax, Louisiana businesses pay the majority of property taxes and half of sales taxes – at the highest rate in the nation. Businesses pay a franchise tax and an inventory tax in Louisiana, which most states don’t even have, as well as excise taxes like severance and gas. New data shows that the often-cited corporate exemptions are down 60%.
LABI President and CEO Stephen Waguespack stated, “As another legislative session kicks off, it is imperative to keep in mind that Louisiana is in an economic recession, and employers have been subjected to tax increases and enormous unpredictability for the past 15 months. Meanwhile, legislative economists are telling state leaders that to address the deficits, we must create jobs. Further placing the blame on employers working every day to ensure the success of the state will only lead us down the same past: a down economy and more state deficits.”
LABI’s most recent publication is available for download at www.labi.org/research.
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About the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry
The Louisiana Association of Business and Industry was organized in 1975 to represent Louisiana businesses, serving as both the state chamber of commerce and state manufacturers association. LABI’s primary goal is to foster a climate for economic growth by championing the principles of the free enterprise system and representing the general interest of the business community through active involvement in the political, legislative, judicial and regulatory processes. Find out more information at www.labi.org.