Montana Earns 6th Place in National Business Tax Climate Study

Sep 29, 2016|Press Release

Montana Earns 6th Place in Nat’l Business Tax Climate Study. Chamber believes there is still work to be done

For the fourth straight year, Montana has earned a sixth place ranking in the Tax Foundation’s 2017 State Business Tax Climate Index. The annual study was released yesterday. Montana’s neighbors, Wyoming and South Dakota, were ranked first and second for states with the best business tax climate.

“We’re proud of the work we’ve done to get Montana to this level,” said Webb Brown, President/CEO of the Montana Chamber of Commerce. “Yet, our goal is being #1. We believe there is still work to do to improve Montana’s business climate.”

The Montana Chamber uses this study in conjunction with many other annual publications to interpret Montana’s business climate and to set its priorities accordingly.

“While this study reflects consistency at a high level for our state, the results should not excuse complacency,” said Bridger Mahlum, Government Relations Director for the Montana Chamber of Commerce. “After completing our Montana Business Agenda Tour around the state this month, the Montana Chamber is prepared to bring forth legislation to help Montana move up from its 6th place ranking in the annual SBTCI.”

This study is based on how states structure their tax systems, not how much is actually collected by state governments. The ranking indicates that Montana has a relatively strong tax structure, but it doesn’t take a national study to show that some of our burdens are quite steep, especially for business equipment and property taxes.

The study rewards states significantly if they do not carry a major tax. Eight of the top ten states fit this description, including Montana with its absence of a statewide sales tax. Montana’s third place ranking in the sales tax category helped the state climb the charts.

Big Sky Country ranked 21st and 19th for individual income tax and unemployment insurance tax. Montana cracked the top 10 in its property tax structure and climbed to a 13th place ranking in its corporate tax category.

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