Is North Carolina a National Model for Reform?

Date: August 01, 2017


After the latest round of tax cuts, approved by the Legislature for 2019 in this year’s budget plan, Forbes contributor and Americans for Tax Reform Director of State Affairs Patrick Gleason declared North Carolina the national model for tax reform.

“It’s remarkable how much progress North Carolina has made in improving its business tax climate in recent years, going from having one of the worst business tax climates in the country (ranked 44th), to one of the best today (now 11th best according to the nonpartisan Tax Foundation),” Gleason wrote. “…Thanks to the enactment of multiple rounds of tax relief, beginning with the landmark 2013 tax reform act, North Carolina will soon have a personal income tax rate that is 30 percent lower than what the top rate was only four years ago. The corporate rate, having been reduced by more than 63 percent since 2013, is now the lowest corporate income tax rate among states that impose such a tax.”

North Carolina has attracted the attention of others, as well. CNBC’s 2017 state economic climate scorecard, based on more than 60 factors of competitiveness, ranked the state fifth best overall for business. It earned top 10 rankings in several categories, including workforce (seventh rank), cost of doing business (ninth), technology and innovation (sixth), business friendliness (eighth), and access to capital (ninth). Business Facilities also ranked North Carolina seventh for business climate, eighth for workforce training, and fifth for economic growth potential.

And Mercatus Center’s 2017 State Fiscal Condition study found North Carolina 15th for financial health. While it’s short-term cash solvency is below the national average, its long-term position is stronger than the average for other states. On budget solvency, long-run solvency, and trust fund solvency, North Carolina ranked in the top 10: fifth, eighth, and seventh, respectively.


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