Bombardier Tax Credits Revised, But Still a Dangerous, Unjust Idea
The ill-conceived Bombardier tax credit plan is moving forward, albeit in a more limited form. Instead of being worth as much as $880 million, the bill would now grant only a maximum of $240 million in tax credits to the French-Canadian corporation if it relocates to the Kansas City area. While several lawmakers seem to think this adjustment would make the plan worthwhile for the state, even in a best-case scenario the state would not break even on this deal until sometime between 2021 and 2039. That’s a long time to wait for a "payoff" that may never materialize.
The larger problem, however, is that this bill illustrates how the government plays favorites among businesses. Missouri is already home to tens of thousands of businesses that employ millions of people and they would happily employ more if a lower tax burden freed up the money to do so! The only fair and just way of encouraging this sort of growth is to lower the corporate tax rate across the board so that all companies are treated equally. In the alternative, the General Assembly could offer these tax credit plans to any company that creates new jobs in the state. Either of these ideas would be a far more equitable solution, and it would show loyalty to the businesses already serving Missouri, rather than blatantly offering to bolster the profits of a foreign corporation.