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Who Offers Tax-Based Business Development Incentives?

45 Pages Posted: 30 Sep 2011  

R. Alison Felix

Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City

James R. Hines Jr.

University of Michigan; NBER

Date Written: September 2011

Abstract

Many American communities seek to attract or retain businesses with tax abatements, tax credits, or tax increment financing of infrastructure projects (TIFs). The evidence for 1999 indicates that communities are most likely to offer one or more of these business development incentives if their residents have low incomes, if they are located close to state borders, and if their states have troubled political cultures. Ten percent greater median household income is associated with a 3.2 percent lower probability of offering incentives; ten percent greater distance from a state border is associated with a 1.0 percent lower probability of offering incentives; and a 10 percent higher rate at which government officials are convicted of federal corruption crimes is associated with a 1.2 percent greater probability of offering business incentives. TIFs are the preferred incentive of communities whose residents have household incomes between $25,000 and $75,000; whereas TIFs are much less commonly offered by communities whose residents have household incomes below $25,000. The need to finance TIFs out of incremental tax revenues may make it infeasible for many of the poorest of communities to use TIFs for local business development.

Suggested Citation

Felix, R. Alison and Hines Jr., James R., Who Offers Tax-Based Business Development Incentives? (September 2011). NBER Working Paper No. w17466. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1935792

R. Alison Felix (Contact Author)

Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City ( email )

1 Memorial Dr.
Kansas City, MO 64198
United States

James Rodger Hines

University of Michigan ( email )

625 South State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1215
United States

NBER

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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