Issues include Gov. Bill Lee’s proposed franchise property tax reform
The 113th Tennessee General Assembly is underway, with lawmakers indicating this year’s gathering likely will be more abbreviated.
Most of the action during the first week was in the House of Representatives, which adopted a new rules policy. The vote was mostly along party lines. New rules include a ticketing policy for citizens to gain entrance into one side of the House gallery and House bill sponsors being limited to five minutes to present their bills on the floor and in committees.
Legislators must have their bills filed by Jan. 30 in the House and Feb. 1 in the Senate. NFIB has already begun reviewing bills that have been filed, which can be found here and by visiting your legislators’ individual pages. Stay tuned for any action alerts to contact your elected officials.
GOVERNOR PROPOSING FRANCHISE PROPERTY TAX REFORM
NFIB will be reviewing a proposal from Gov. Bill Lee that would eliminate the alternative property calculation of the franchise tax. Currently, there are two options to calculate – using property and net worth.
State experts believe the current process is likely unconstitutional (violates the Dormant Commerce Clause) and are making the recommendation to avoid expected expensive legal action. Businesses that currently use the property component to calculate their taxes are expected to qualify to file for refunds. Details are not yet available. No proposed changes to the excise tax calculation are expected.
Annual F&E taxes (approximately $1.7B collected) contribute about 20% to the state budget, second to sales & uses taxes, which contribute about 60% to the budget.
STATE GRANTS TO BUSINESSES FOR ADULT-SIZE CHANGING TABLES
Under a state grant program, $5,000 can be awarded per location to businesses and municipalities in Tennessee to purchase and install universal adult changing tables that are open to the public. Interested businesses can learn more here.