February 8, 2023

Unitranche

Supportive Business Potential

Oklahoma ranks low among states when starting a business

Oklahoma ranks low among states when it comes to where you should start a business.Forbes ranked the Sooner State 42 out of the 50 U.S. states. The state’s Chamber of Commerce said it all goes back to a need for tax reform.The state Chamber put personal income tax at the top of their list, arguing the state should implement a flat tax. Currently, Oklahoma has several tax brackets based on how much you make.”In the Forbes list, noted that the top five states in that list, four out of five have a single bracket, flat tax for their personal income tax. Oklahoma has six brackets, which just introduces unnecessary complication into the code,” said Ben Lepak, state Chamber Research Foundation.Lepak with the state Chamber said it’s one of several barriers the state has to deal with when attracting businesses. The Chamber’s 202 scorecard actually ranks the state 39th when it comes to economic competitiveness.”Really what we’re focused on is the overall competitiveness of the code. Not focusing on any one individual item, but a total tax picture that is competitive for business,” Lepak said.That’s why the Chamber also wants state lawmakers to look at taxes on Capital investment and taxes on companies that aren’t headquartered here but still want to do business in Oklahoma. State leaders said they’re committed to tax reform but not revealing a specific plan just yet.”It’s still in the development phase in our caucus and by mid-January. I’ll have a better perspective on how hard I’ll push on the entirety of it,” said Sen. Greg Treat, (R) Oklahoma City.One specific Treat mentioned was the personal income tax.”There is an ultimate goal of trying to get as close to zero on personal income tax as we can, in a methodical way,” Treat said.Treat said expect some progress on tax reform this session but also acknowledged a total rehaul of the state’s tax code could take several sessions to complete.

Oklahoma ranks low among states when it comes to where you should start a business.

Forbes ranked the Sooner State 42 out of the 50 U.S. states. The state’s Chamber of Commerce said it all goes back to a need for tax reform.

The state Chamber put personal income tax at the top of their list, arguing the state should implement a flat tax. Currently, Oklahoma has several tax brackets based on how much you make.

“In the Forbes list, noted that the top five states in that list, four out of five have a single bracket, flat tax for their personal income tax. Oklahoma has six brackets, which just introduces unnecessary complication into the code,” said Ben Lepak, state Chamber Research Foundation.

Lepak with the state Chamber said it’s one of several barriers the state has to deal with when attracting businesses. The Chamber’s 202 scorecard actually ranks the state 39th when it comes to economic competitiveness.

“Really what we’re focused on is the overall competitiveness of the code. Not focusing on any one individual item, but a total tax picture that is competitive for business,” Lepak said.

That’s why the Chamber also wants state lawmakers to look at taxes on Capital investment and taxes on companies that aren’t headquartered here but still want to do business in Oklahoma. State leaders said they’re committed to tax reform but not revealing a specific plan just yet.

“It’s still in the development phase in our caucus and by mid-January. I’ll have a better perspective on how hard I’ll push on the entirety of it,” said Sen. Greg Treat, (R) Oklahoma City.

One specific Treat mentioned was the personal income tax.

“There is an ultimate goal of trying to get as close to zero on personal income tax as we can, in a methodical way,” Treat said.

Treat said expect some progress on tax reform this session but also acknowledged a total rehaul of the state’s tax code could take several sessions to complete.