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States Get New Tool to Collect Taxes Due on Internet Sales

February 24, 2016

A federal court just handed states a powerful new tool to collect a larger share of the taxes that are legally due — but often go unpaid — on purchases made over the Internet.  The court upheld a 2010 Colorado...

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Startups Fuel Job Growth, Animated

February 5, 2016

Startups and young, fast-growing companies create most new jobs during economic expansions, as we explain in our new report summarizing recent research on the dynamics of job creation.

“Startups” ― firms in their first year of existence ― play a critical role in job creation,...


Most Job Creation Starts at Home

February 3, 2016

To create jobs and build strong economies, states should focus on producing more home-grown entrepreneurs and on helping startups and young, fast-growing firms already in their state to grow ― not on cutting taxes and trying to lure businesses from other states.  That’s the conclusion from a new analysis of data about which businesses create jobs and where they create them, as we explain in a...

Infographic: The Vast Majority of Job Creation Comes From...

Repealing Internet Tax Freedom Act’s “Grandfather Clause” Could Harm All States

December 11, 2015

Legislation before Congress to repeal the Internet Tax Freedom Act’s (ITFA) “grandfather clause” could cost all states money, not just the seven states that the clause authorizes to continue taxing Internet access services directly.  That’s one reason among many why the House and Senate should reject this legislation (which would also permanently extend ITFA) when it comes up for...

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More Transparency on Business Tax Breaks

August 25, 2015

The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB), which sets the rules that states and localities follow in reporting revenues and spending, has handed the public and fiscal watchdog groups an invaluable tool to hold policymakers accountable for the tax breaks they give companies to encourage economic development. 

A new GASB rule...

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Myth and Reality on State Income and Sales Taxes

May 6, 2015

I wrote recently that proposals by governors in Maine and Ohio to shift their states’ revenue mix away from income taxes and toward sales...

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Shifting from Income to Sales Taxes Won’t Boost State Economies

April 29, 2015

Governors in Maine and Ohio want to shift their states’ revenue mix away from income taxes and toward sales taxes by cutting the former and raising the latter, arguing that will boost economic growth.  But these proposals would do more harm...

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Case for “Single Sales Factor” Tax Cut Now Much Weaker

April 1, 2015

Lawmakers in North Carolina, North Dakota, and Tennessee are considering a costly corporate tax giveaway in hopes of attracting or retaining manufacturing jobs.  But a new study casts serious doubt on the research that has long served as the main justification for this tax break.

Called the “single sales factor formula,” the tax break enables multistate corporations to pay income taxes...

Making State and Local Tax Breaks for Businesses More Transparent

February 9, 2015

State and local tax breaks to encourage certain activities, like saving for college or locating a business in a specific neighborhood, have become very costly and deserve as much scrutiny as government spending.  But, for the public, identifying these so-called “tax expenditures” can be difficult, and finding out their cost is...

Why Money Doesn’t Walk

October 20, 2014

We’ve shown that interstate differences in tax levels have little effect on whether and where people move, contrary to claims by some tax-cut proponents.  The related claim — that people who leave a state take their incomes with them, harming that state’s economy — isn’t true either, our...