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NJ Ranks 49th In Business Tax Climate, Beating NY

New Jersey is growing more business-friendly. According to a new report from the Tax Foundation, the Garden state moved up one place from 50th to 49th this year, beating neighbor New York.

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“New Jersey still has some of the highest property taxes in the country. In fact, per capita, state residents pay $2,671 per capita, that’s about 5.3 percent of personal income.  Some of the other reasons include a high income tax rate and a high corporate tax rate” said Scott Drenkard, an economist at the Tax Foundation.

Wyoming, Florida, and Texas rank among the ten best states for taxes on business.

The State Business Tax Climate Index, now in its 9th edition, collects data on over a hundred tax provisions for each state and synthesizes them into a single easy-to-use score. The states are then compared against each other, so that each state’s ranking is relative to actual policies in place in other states around the country. A state’s ranking can rise or fall significantly based not just on its own actions, but on the changes or reforms made by other states.

“Even in our global economy, a state’s strongest and most immediate competition often comes from other states,” said Drenkard.   State lawmakers need to be aware of how their states’ business climates match up to their immediate neighbors and to other states in their region.”

That was the case in New Jersey this year. New York’s business climate  got worse, while New Jersey stood still.

“Governor Christie actually vowed last year that New Jersey’s score would improve and that did ring true, but not because of any action from New Jersey.  What we saw instead was New York’s top personal income tax rate decrease, bumping them into last on the list” said Drenkard.

But he says there was one bright spot for New Jersey.

“The state was able to stop a proposed millionaires tax from being enacted and if that had been enacted that would have kept New Jersey at 50th.”

The top ten states in the 2013 Index are Wyoming (#1), South Dakota (#2), Nevada (#3), Alaska (#4), Florida (#5), Washington (#6), New Hampshire (#7), Montana (#8), Texas (#9), and Utah (#10).

The 10 lowest ranked states in the 2013 Index are Maryland (#41), Iowa (#42), Wisconsin (#43), North Carolina (#44), Minnesota (#45), Rhode Island (#46), Vermont (#47), California (#48), New Jersey (#49), and New York (#50).

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