Tennessee Taxpayers Can Send a Clear Message to Washington


August 28, 2014 10:46AM

With all the news about corporate inversions, where large corporations move their headquarters “on paper” to a country with a lower corporate tax rate, it is easy to lose sight of who actually employs most Americans—small businesses on Main Street. As our political leaders and national media call for the closing of this particular loophole, those of us at Beacon know this one loophole is not the biggest issue, and in fact businesses are considering these decisions because of the larger unfair corporate tax structure that encourages business to move overseas. This is just a symptom of a larger issue. Perhaps this is best illustrated at the state level. As Tennesseans, we pride ourselves on responsible governance, on maintaining the lowest debt per capita in the nation, of being the third freest state in the union, and competing amongst the short-list of states without an income tax. In fact, we don’t believe that good is good enough. Many leaders in our state legislature are also calling for a repeal of our Hall Tax on investment income to ensure that Tennessee remains a competitive incubator for future economic growth. In so doing, we’ll become a magnet for businesses in other states to relocate to a more business-friendly environment. It’s time for Washington to take note of Tennessee’s example. We need full-scale tax reform for all businesses and all Americans. We need an all-out assault on spending in Washington. A fairer and flatter tax code that broadens the tax burdens for all Americans and American businesses, paired with reined in spending, is necessary if we want Tennesseans and small business owners to have the cash to invest in their future and live their American Dream. Helping you pursue your version of the American Dream is at the very core of Beacon’s mission. Just this week, the Beacon Center and CEO Justin Owen participated in an event with U.S. Rep. Diane Black and the Main Street Growth and Opportunity Coalition of small business and community leaders to discuss these market-based state and national tax reforms. As a member of both the House Ways and Means Committee and Budget Committee, Rep. Black is uniquely positioned to impact the decisions on how our tax dollars are spent. She has been a leader in promoting pro-growth legislation and policy discussions since residents of the 6th District first sent her to Washington. Of course, she cannot do this alone. Our state and nationally elected officials must hear from Tennesseans across the state. Let us join in the call for repealing our state’s Hall Tax and stand with Rep. Black to bring true corporate tax and spending reform to Washington. -Lindsay Boyd