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Helena Montana State Capital

Fiscal Reform – Corporate Welfare

Feb 6, 2023 by AFP

Unleashing opportunity through sound fiscal policy and allowing Montanans to keep more of what they earn. 

Why 

Unsustainable government spending limits the economic opportunity of all Americans and fuels special-interest politics that rig the system in favor of the well-connected at the expense of everyone else. It’s also creating a debt load that presents one of the most significant obstacles to success for Americans today.  

To get the country back on the right fiscal track, Americans for Prosperity is working to rein in mandatory and discretionary spending, eliminate handouts that pick winners and losers while disadvantaging hardworking taxpayers, and create a tax code that enables everyone to succeed instead of punishing their success.  

Corporate Welfare in Montana 

Montana’s largest cities each year give tens of millions of taxpayer dollars to large, multimillion-dollar corporations. Local leadership, meanwhile, tells us they are desperate for revenue, and continually raise taxes each year, often delivering crushing blows to their residents already struggling with rising costs.  

Despite doing some good in local communities in MT, TIF has recently become a tool of corporate welfare, siphoning off 10’s of millions of dollars annually from vital public services. Touted as an economic development tool, it primarily funds projects that are already underway and picks winners and losers. The result is that cities need more resources for essential services and continually levy new taxes and higher taxes on their residents to cover the shortfall.  

The state government initially allowed TIF to be created in local cities in the 1970s. Since that time, the requirements for creating a TIF district, extending a TIF district, as well as what the money can be spent on have become far too lenient. It is time for the legislature to fix the problem they created over five decades. They must ensure accountability and integrity on how residents’ hard-earned tax dollars are spent.  

 

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