Louisiana ranks FIRST in the nation for corporate subsidies per capita, giving away $5.1 BILLION PER YEAR in corporate exemptions. Yet our legislature has been unable to fill a deficit of $600 million (which it created).
This petition calls upon Governor John Bel Edwards and the Louisiana Legislature to FIX OUR TAX SYSTEM, by reducing corporate subsidies and exemptions, reforming the income tax structure and restoring funds to education, healthcare and other essential needs.
WHEREAS, Louisiana ranks FIRST IN THE NATION for corporate subsidies per capita, with a corporate subsidy rate 500% higher than the national average;
WHEREAS, Louisiana’s tax structure is regressive, with the highest sales tax in the nation, requiring low- and middle-income citizens to pay the highest rates of taxation;
WHEREAS, the state’s largest program of corporate subsidies, the Industrial Tax Exemption Program, redirects billions in property taxes from local governmental entities to corporations, without the approval of those local entities;
WHEREAS, Louisiana faces chronic budget deficits, resulting in devastating cuts to education, healthcare, infrastructure and other investments;
THEREFORE, we, the undersigned, call upon:
I) Governor John Bel Edwards to use his constitutional authority to reform the Industrial Tax Exemption Program, requiring local approval for local exemptions, lowering the exemption to a maximum of 65% of property taxes and forbidding the exemption of school district property taxes;
II) the Louisiana Legislature and Governor Edwards to address the inadequacy and unfairness of our state tax system, by reducing corporate exemptions, reforming income tax rates and deductibility to restore the revenue lost from the Stelly cuts and replacing the sales tax increases of 2016 with a less regressive revenue source.
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