The Tax Foundation released its “State Business Tax Climate Index” this week and Florida ranks fourth in the nation.
Wyoming led the nation followed by South Dakota, Alaska, Florida, Nevada, Montana, New Hampshire, Indiana, Utah and Texas.
Florida placed fifth last year but moved up as Nevada slid from third to fifth.
“The absence of a major tax is a common factor among many of the top ten states,” the Tax Foundation noted. “Property taxes and unemployment insurance taxes are levied in every state, but there are several states that do without one or more of the major taxes: the corporate income tax, the individual income tax, or the sales tax. Wyoming, Nevada, South Dakota, and Texas have no corporate or individual income tax (though Nevada and Texas both impose gross receipts taxes); Alaska has no individual income or state-level sales tax; Florida has no individual income tax; and New Hampshire and Montana have no sales tax. This does not mean, however, that a state cannot rank in the top ten while still levying all the major taxes. Indiana and Utah, for example, levy all of the major tax types, but do so with low rates on broad bases."
New Jersey was ranked as having the worst business tax climate in America followed by New York, California, Minnesota, Vermont, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Wisconsin, Ohio and Maryland.
“The states in the bottom 10 tend to have a number of afflictions in common: complex, non-neutral taxes with comparatively high rates,” the Tax Foundation noted. “New Jersey, for example, hampered by some of the highest property tax burdens in the country, is one of just two states to levy both an inheritance tax and an estate tax, and maintains some of the worst-structured individual income taxes in the country."
Florida led the nation when it came to individual income tax and placed third on unemployment insurance taxes. But the Sunshine State was hindered on other fronts, ranking 17th on both corporate income tax and sales tax. Florida ranked 20th when it came to property taxes.
Chris Hudson, the director of Americans for Prosperity’s (AFP) Florida chapter, said the Sunshine State should do better than its fourth place showing.
"We don't accept a "pretty good" effort from our kids when they study or play sports, and we shouldn't accept anything less than the best from our state lawmakers," Hudson said on Wednesday. “Fourth place in state business tax climate is three places too low. There is no reason Florida shouldn't have the best business tax climate in the nation - except that lawmakers want to waste time and tax dollars handing out corporate welfare rather than cutting wasteful spending and lowering the tax burden for everyone. This next session lawmakers have their goal: make our state's tax burden the lowest and most economically competitive in the nation.”
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