“Together Louisiana” has high praises for local government

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Monday marks a new focus for Together Louisiana.

During a Press Club meeting, the group highlighted the Industrial Tax Exemptions and the importance of our local government being able to decide who gets the tax break.

However, some lawmakers want to change that. They want to return ITEP to state control. 

Regardless, members of the group are sticking to their beliefs on how the money could go to better use; although, big companies, like ExxonMobil, have argued that tax exemptions are an incentive.

Together Louisiana revealed several facts about ITEP:

1. Louisiana is the only state in the nation to allow a state-level entity, the Board of Comemerce and Industry, to control local property tax exemptions.

  • Source – Louisiana Economic Development, 2016

2. From 2000-2016, the Board of Commerce and Industry approved 99.95% of ITEP requests without conducting a cost-benefit analysis.

  • Exemptions cost local entities $20 Billion in lost revenue from 2000 to 2016.
  • School districts lost $7.5 from ’00 to ’16, more than 20% of state and local funding for schools.
  • Source – LED Fastlane Database, 2000 to 2016.

3. The companies receiving $20 Billion in ITEP subsidies from 2000 to 2016 cut 26,000 jobs over the same period.

  • Source – Employment data from ITEP applicant companies, LED Fastlane Database, 2000.

4. Three times as much property currently is exempted under ITEP as under the homestead exemption.

  • ITEP – exempt property (assessed value): $23.3B
  • Homestead-exempt property (assessed value):
  • Source – Louisiana Tax Comission, 2018 Annual Report, tables 48 & 49.

5. Louisiana has exempted 68 times as much industrial property as Texas (even though Texas has 5x as much industrial property).

The group also compared statistics to Texas; claiming Louisiana exempts 35 as much industrial property as Texas and Louisiana’s total tax burden on manufacturing is much lower than our neighboring state. They also argue Texas outpaces Louisiana for job creation in Education, Health, and Public Sector Jobs.

For more information on where “Together Louisiana” stands on ITEP, click here.

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