WSJ Columnist Cites Our State & Local Tax Studies, Urges Obama Not to Repeat New Jersey’s Mistakes

December 30, 2008

William McGurn, a former Newscorp executive and former speechwriter for President George W. Bush, penned his “Main Street” column in the Wall Street Journal this morning, urging President-Elect Obama to make a specific New Year’s resolution: “I will not allow America to become New Jersey.”

Providing his thoughts on the consequences of high income, business and property taxes, McGurn calls New Jersey “the perfect bad example,” citing our State Business Tax Climate Index, State-Local Tax Burden Report, and local property tax rankings.

“In some ways, we are a mini-California. That is to say, where New Jersey was once a national leader in terms of economic growth and job creation, more recently we have become a national laggard.

“It seems not to have dented the consciousness of our political class that New Jersey’s dismal economic performance might be linked to the state’s tax policy. According to the nonpartisan Tax Foundation, New Jersey is home to the most hostile tax environment for business in the nation. We also bear the nation’s highest burden of state and local taxes. And on the list of the 10 counties with the highest median property tax, we claim seven of them.”

But according to Scott Goldstein in yesterday’s edition of NJBIZ, New Jersey Governor John Corzine is starting to head in the right direction by signing business-friendly tax legislation, including an extention of the amount of time companies can spread out net operating losses, from seven to twenty years.

Stay updated with analysis from the Tax Foundation in 2009 as Congress and state legislatures come back into session.


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