Energy corps among top beneficiaries from tax incentives

In case you missed it, an investigative report by The New York Times this week found that Texas provides more business incentives than any other state by far, to the tune of more than $19 billion a year.

That equates to 51 cents of every dollar in the state budget, or $759 per resident, used for corporate income tax credits, property tax abatements, sales tax discounts and other incentives meant to lure businesses to the state.

Many companies that work in or service the energy sector rose to the top of the list of businesses that benefit most from Texas incentives. Independent oil and natural gas producer Anadarko Petroleum ranked third, receiving $175 million in income tax credits and other incentives from the state, according to the Times analysis.

The largest chunk of Texas’ business incentives benefit the manufacturing industry. The Texas sales tax exemption for manufacturing eliminates sales tax on purchases of equipment used for manufacturing, at a cost of about $11.7 billion a year, the report found.

There’s been legal wrangling over whether equipment used in oil and natural gas fields should benefit from that exemption.

While business incentives come at a hefty price for the state and its residents, Texas boasted one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country throughout the recession.

Read the Times report on Texas business incentives here.