Watchdog group says big corporations avoid state taxes

Author: Associated Press
MGN Online

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) – Florida’s largest companies spend heavily on lobbying and campaign contributions and get millions in state contracts and subsidies.

But a report released Wednesday says they pay less in state taxes than the official 5.5 percent rate. How much they pay isn’t certain, because corporate tax payments in Florida are confidential.

Government corruption watchdog group Integrity Florida’s report says the public should get more information about corporate taxes, including the amount paid by any company seeking a state contract or subsidy.

The report looked at Florida-based Fortune 500 companies. They paid an average total of 2.7 percent of their profits in state taxes nationwide, even though most states have higher corporate tax rates.

Author Alan Stonecipher says “it’s very likely they are paying less,” because Florida’s rate is among the lowest.

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