Together Louisiana Reforms State Industrial Tax Exemptions

Baton Rouge, LA - With seventy 'Together Louisiana' leaders in attendance, Governor John Bel Edwards issued an Executive Order overhauling the nation's largest state program of corporate subsidies, the Industrial Tax Exemption Program (ITEP).

Reforms include requirements that impacted local tax authorities approve the subsidy, including municipal government, school boards and law enforcement; exemptions demonstrate a Return on Investment (ROI) for new jobs or retention of good jobs; and that subsidy applicants sign contractual agreements based on promised investments and local hires.

Says leader Dianne Henley, "What the Governor did today is far bigger than reforming a single program. It signals a major shift in our state's approach to economic development, focused less on corporate subsidies with no strings attached and more on jobs and the development of our people."

Together Louisiana's victory comes the month after Edwards pledged to 400 leaders that he would support tax fairness, and only one week after the organization released a groundbreaking study of ITEP detailing its unorthodox structure and exorbitant cost to local governments. Leaders are calling this just the first major victory of their Tax Fairness Campaign and pledge to fight for more.

Governor John Bel Edwards Sets Criteria for Lucrative Tax Breaks for Manufacturers, The Advocate

John Bel Edwards Signs Executive Order for Scrutiny of Industrial Tax Break, Times-Picayune