Our Taxes Aren’t “Iowa Nice”

A businessman in Sioux City recently stated it very plainly to us:  “We have stores in seven states.  Iowa is more expensive for property taxes than any other.”   Iowans are, for the most part, hardworking, friendly, and willing to help a stranger in need. Many call this “Iowa nice.”  However, our state’s tax code has been ranked as one […]

Where’s Everyone Going?

In just one year, over 9,000 Iowans moved to Florida, Texas, and South Dakota ­– all states that do not have an income tax.   Since 1980, the nation’s population has grown by more than 40 percent, and Iowa’s population has only grown 7 percent. Tax rates have a direct impact on the population. States with lower tax rates have […]

‘Cadillac Tax’ will hit Iowans hard

The Cedar Rapids Gazette recently published a guest column from Walt Rogers, TEF Iowa Deputy Director about the impending implementation of the “Cadillac Tax.” Under the Cadillac Tax, the federal government will impose a 40 percent excise tax on all employer-sponsored health insurance plans, as well as workplace-provided health care and wellness programs.   ‘Soaring deductibles and medical bills are […]

State Government is Picking Winners and Losers

Iowa competes with 49 states for businesses and people. What policies will allow Iowa to be more competitive and attract more people, businesses, and entrepreneurial activity?   While the economy overall is doing well, Iowa is still confronted with some serious economic problems. Whether it is slow population growth, a growing divide between rural and urban communities, or a shortage […]

Tax Credits Need Accountability and Transparency

Taxpayers are being forced by the government to subsidize businesses.   State and local governments utilize tax credits and incentives to create economic growth. The argument is made that governments need to utilize credits and incentives to not only attract new businesses, but also help existing businesses expand. Whether it is tax credits, incentives, abatements, or the use of TIF […]

Helping Iowa Grow

People vote with their feet. Iowa’s population and economic growth requires lowering income tax rates and controlling spending.   There is clear evidence states that reduce tax rates and control spending not only grow economically but attract new residents. Tax rates matter and the more a government taxes something the less you get. High taxes not only discourage investment, entrepreneurship, […]

This Wine Tax Will Not Age Well

Sour grapes! Iowa has the fourth highest tax on wine in the nation.   When considering wine, Iowa may not necessarily be the first region connoisseurs think about. However, Iowa’s wine industry does have an economic impact in our state. Iowans and tourists often visit one of nearly 100 wineries and the state government taxes wine at $1.75 per gallon, […]

The Tax Cuts Are Working!

Unshackling the tax burden from Iowa small businesses does not just allow them to expand, but it also benefits their employees.   Lana Pol, owner of several businesses in Pella and Des Moines recently testified before the United States House of Representatives Committee on the Budget. Ms. Pol was representing the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) and she spoke […]

What Happened to My Tax Refund?

This is either lazy reporting or intentionally inaccurate. Tax refunds do not indicate if a person’s tax liability increased or decreased.   Americans across the country are filing their federal income taxes and many are seeing lower than expected refunds or getting the shock of having to pay more taxes to the federal government. Many liberal politicians and media outlets […]

Is a Four Percent Raise Enough?

Would a four percent increase in income next year help your household budget? For most families it would. Four percent isn’t enough for the city of North Liberty according to their city administrator and they want to increase the property tax rate another 1.2 percent. In recent years the city’s taxable valuation growth has increased between seven and 14 percent […]

Iowa’s Tax Burden

How does Iowa compare with the other 49 states and Washington, D.C.? The individual income tax rate, corporate income tax rate, sales tax rate all as of January 1, 2019, and property taxes paid as a percentage of owner-occupied housing value for CY 2016 are ranked from 1 to 51 with 1 being the lowest and 51 the highest. Individual […]

Does Government “Help” Prevent Growth?

The Iowa legislature is already making progress in creating a more friendly economic environment for job creators by passing needed tax reform legislation. The tax reform bill signed into law by Governor Kim Reynolds begins the process of reducing Iowa’s high individual and corporate tax rates. In addition, this legislation also calls for a strenuous review of Iowa’s many business […]

Iowa Passes Substantial Tax Reform

Gov. Kim Reynolds and Republicans in the Iowa House and Senate identified tax reform as a priority before the start of the 2018 session. With expectations high for the first significant income tax reform in 20 years, the discussion on tax policy dominated the session. The Governor and lawmakers agreed to a bill on the session’s final day and the […]

The Historical Success Story of Tax Cuts

The passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which is the most significant tax reform to occur in decades, is creating economic growth and opportunities for Americans. The tax cuts, along with President Donald Trump’s unshackling the economy from excessive regulations, is the cause of this economic renewal. The “new normal” economy of slow economic growth and high unemployment […]

The North Carolina Growth Story Continues

Opponents of tax reduction balk at North Carolina’s historic tax reform as an example that pro-growth tax policies only lead to the bleeding of essential state services. They are wrong.  Since 2013, an economic policy agenda reducing tax rates, regulations, and controlling the growth of spending has been advanced in North Carolina. In the process, North Carolina “began changing the […]

Will Iowa Become a Pro-Growth State?

U.S. News & World Report recently ranked Iowa “best state in the nation when it comes to infrastructure, healthcare, opportunity, and education.” Although this ranking is something Iowa can be proud of it does not mean that improvements cannot be made, especially regarding our state’s high and complex tax code. Iowa has some of the highest individual and corporate income […]

Government’s Unquenchable Appetite for Tax Dollars

As Iowa’s tight budget situation lingers, the call for additional revenue sources continues to grow. The Des Moines Register recently published an editorial advocating a tax increase on beer to fund various programs and law enforcement efforts to deal with alcohol-related issues. The editorial board argued that a higher beer tax would discourage drinking and reduce the harmful effects of alcohol abuse. Iowa currently […]

Crush the Soda Tax

The Des Moines Register recently suggested that Iowa should consider imposing a new tax on soda and other sugary drinks. It is assumed that this tax may be able to help solve two problems. The first is to generate more revenue for state government, and the second is to fight obesity. Any potential debate over a soda tax should serve […]