VIDEO: Governor Lee Recaps How $2 Billion Franchise Reform Was Passed

Date: May 29, 2024

NFIB leaders discuss 2024 TN victories, challenges for small business

Last week, Governor Bill Lee engaged NFIB members on his drive to pass SB 2103, a sweeping overhaul of Tennessee’s franchise and excise (F&E) tax. As a result, businesses that were using the property measure in calculating the tax will see a $400 million tax cut going forward, along with potential eligibility for refunds ($1.5 billion total).

“This was an issue that was incredibly complicated when presented to us, when I first discovered we had [a constitutional issue with our franchise tax], said Lee (remarks begin at 8:30 of the video). “Just like all of you who run a business, when a problem comes you have to deal with it.”

Lee said he was not “pleased at all with any level of disclosure,” of confidential taxpayer information but in the end was “happy enough with a compromise” that got the bill to his desk.

“I’m grateful for the support of NFIB in this process, for certain,” he added. “(NFIB) came alongside and helped us with making sure lawmakers understood why this needed to be passed and why it’s important.”

NFIB member Brigitte Edwards, who owns six fitness studios in Middle Tennessee, shared with the governor that the new law will “bring $50,000 total to our bottom lines this year … which will help us improve pay and benefits, and add staff, [and] the tax cut will help stabilize our operations.”

Commissioner of Revenue David Gerregano also provided an update and shared resources on the refund process. He said already thousands of Tennessee businesses have submitted refund claims. An estimated 100,000 businesses, 80% of which are based in Tennessee, recently were sent letters alerting them of their likely eligibility.

NFIB State Director Jim Brown and Labor Advisory Chair Michael Moschel recapped the rest of session and provided an update on challenges and opportunities ahead.

Questions? Contact State Director Jim Brown at [email protected] or (615) 874-5288.


Related Content: Small Business News | Tennessee

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