Lawmakers and others hoping to make Georgia more attractive to employers won’t be heartened by a new report that assesses the state’s business tax climate.
Georgia ranked 34th among states in its “business-friendliness,” according to the Tax Foundation, a non-partisan tax research group based in Washington. That puts it behind Southeast neighbors including Florida (No. 5), Tennessee (No. 14), Mississippi (No. 17) and Alabama (No. 20), as well as Far West states including the top three, Wyoming, South Dakota and Nevada, and even old-line manufacturing centers including Michigan (No. 18) and Pennsylvania (No. 19).
Tax Foundation economist Mark Robyn noted that, “Even in our global economy, a state’s stiffest competition often comes from other states. State lawmakers need to be aware of how their states’ business climates match up to their neighbors and to other states in their region.”
The State Business Tax Climate Index, in its eighth edition, incorporates dozens of tax elements into a single score, then ranks states by that score. It focuses “on how the elements of a state tax system enhance or harm the competitiveness of a state’s business environment.”
Georgia fared poorly in tax components including individual income tax, where it ranked No. 40, and its property tax, where it ranked No. 39. It did better in corporate tax (No. 9) and in sales tax (No. 12).
While some states rankings changed from last year, Georgia stayed in place.