Idaho Commerce Director Pitches New Business Tax Incentive

Feb 21, 2014

Idaho's lackluster quiver of tax incentives make it flyover country for many companies looking to relocate or expand.

That's the verdict of Department of Commerce Director Jeff Sayer, who pitched a plan Friday he says would change that.

Sayer's proposition: What if Idaho allows companies that hire new, well-paid employees to recoup up to 30 percent of their income, sales and payroll taxes after they've proven to have met their expansion promises?

That way, he says, the state would protect itself from companies that don't follow through.

Like a lot of things Idaho floats in the economic-development arena, this so-called "Tax Reimbursement Incentive" is modeled after a five-year-old program from Utah.

Sayer, a former Utah resident, says he doesn't mind cribbing from Idaho's southerly neighbor, since they've proven its merits.