Archive for May 2016

A Fresh Take on Business Taxes

Conservatives and many business groups contend that Minnesota business taxes are high relative to other states. Apart from the dubious merit of some of these claims,* they generally do not take into account the level of economic activity that provides the base from which all taxes are paid. For example, businesses might be able to…

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Minnesota Manufacturers Optimistic

A recent survey shows that “Minnesota’s manufacturers are feeling remarkable levels of across-the-board confidence in the financial prospects for their companies in 2016,” despite growing uneasiness about the U.S. economy. Concerns among manufacturers about the impact of government policies and regulations have steadily declined over the last seven years. These findings are from the recent…

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The High Cost of Fully Exempting Social Security Benefits

Fully exempting Social Security from the state income tax will result in a rapidly escalating state revenue loss and will have consequences that violate several principles of good tax policy. These and other aspects of plans to exempt all Social Security benefits were explored in a March 2016 House Research background paper. Using information from…

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Impact of State Aid on 2016 Property Taxes

Total property taxes in Minnesota increased by 4.7 percent from 2015 to 2016, exceeding the combined rate of inflation and population growth, with county property taxes increasing by 3.4 percent, city property taxes increasing by 4.5 percent, and school property taxes increasing by 7.0 percent. However, before leaping to the conclusion that these local governments…

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Mid-Week Reads: Voter Suppression and Racial Economic Disparities

Every week, North Star will take some time out of our schedules to bring you our favorite reads from the past week. Jeff Van Wychen Stop Voter Suppression Economist and former Clinton Labor Secretary Robert Reich neatly highlights various forms of voter suppression practiced by states around the nation and endorses “a new Voting Rights Act—that renews…

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New MDOR Data Show No Über-Rich Tax Flight

New data from the Minnesota Department of Revenue (MDOR) shows a significant increase in the number of very high-income taxpayers and the income taxes paid by them in the year following enactment of a new “top tier” income tax rate targeted at households with taxable income in excess of $250,000 for married joint filters, $200,000…

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