In an email to supporters, Parents Campaign Executive Director Nancy Loome, who lobbies for full funding of public education, said, “Each year, the Mississippi Legislature exempts corporations from paying hundreds of millions of dollars in taxes they should owe our state. Now all state services, including schools, could find their budgets on the chopping block as revenue comes up short.”
More than $300 million in tax breaks and tax credits were approved by the Legislature and signed into law by Bryant during the last four-year term.
These included changing the method of calculating taxes for businesses, which is estimated to save them about $100 million, providing sales tax breaks for developers to build malls and providing a sales tax holiday for the purchase of hunting equipment.
The largest of the tax breaks is a reduction in the tax on business’s inventory, which is estimated to have a $126 million impact on the state general fund for the upcoming fiscal year, which starts July 1.
But the impact of most of the legislation passed during the last four years is unknown – meaning Department of Revenue officials were unable to estimate the impact it would have on state revenue collections. The impact of most of those tax cuts, such as exempting the sales tax on certain fuels for airplane use, is expected to be minimal. But many have said passing multiple bills that have a minimal impact on revenue eventually adds up to a significant impact.