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North Carolina’s Tax Competitiveness: White Paper

July 2021 |  Download [PDF]  | Pillar: Competitive Business Climate

North Carolina now has one of the most broad-based and competitive tax structures for business in the United States, according to a recent Location Matters survey and newly released white paper from the Tax Foundation and KPMG LLP.

The Location Matters study, released in May, compared overall tax costs among businesses of different types in all 50 states while the white paper follows that report to provide a detailed look at the factors behind North Carolina’s strong finish.

Year in Review: 2020 COVID

December 2020 | Download [PDF] | Pillar: Competitive Business Climate 

The NC Chamber Foundation released Year in Review: 2020 COVID, a reflective research report on the statewide economy during the past year. The publication addresses the demographic, health, and economic effects caused by COVID-19 across our communities, as well as how North Carolina’s response and recovery compare nationally and with other states in the Southeastern region.

Key findings:

  • Economic sectors were affected unequally in both North Carolina and the U.S., including substantial and sustained losses in the leisure and hospitality industries. Manufacturing employment in North Carolina was hit notably harder than in neighboring states.
  • North Carolina’s General Fund budget has not been as negatively impacted as many feared, with conservative practices providing some cushion against cutbacks in government employment and services. Many other states are not as fortunate.
  • Bankruptcies, evictions and foreclosures, and commercial real estate disruption will continue to be headwinds in 2021.
  • However, North Carolina’s high quality of living may allow the state to benefit from interest in more remote work, supply-chain resiliency and redundancy, and likely growth in the state’s historically strong presence of biopharma and other innovation sector companies.

Modernizing North Carolina’s Infrastructure Through Sustainable and Diversified Revenue Streams

August 2020 | Download [PDF] | Pillar: Infrastructure & Growth Leadership

For North Carolina, a modernized transportation network, with strong roads, rails, ports, and airports, is vital to our continued success. To support this critical need, North Carolina’s leaders will need to secure a more sustainable stream of transportation revenue in the years ahead. This report, conducted on the Foundation’s behalf by N.C. State University’s Institute for Transportation Research and Education (ITRE), gives business leaders and our partners a roadmap to examine the routes we might take to get there. The report identifies four of the most viable funding options to reduce our state’s reliance on the outdated motor fuels tax and charts pathways for their implementation. It also examines several transportation projects that have been completed across the state in recent years to highlight the multiplying effects strategic transportation investments can impart on local economies.

Access ITRE and the NC Chamber Foundation presentation on the impacts of investing in roads and highways for North Carolina. 

Turning Conversations into Action: Health Care Value

December 2019 | Download [PDF] | Pillar: Competitive Business Climate

Stakeholders along the health care supply chain gathered at the NC Chamber’s 2019 Health Care Conference to discuss health care transformation, major initiatives under way in the state, examples of employer-based strategies, and recommendations for employers. This report highlights important changes in progress and actionable steps companies can take to help make North Carolina a top-ten state for health and health care value.

Framework for North Carolina Water Policy

March 2019 | Download [PDF] | Pillar: Infrastructure & Growth Leadership

North Carolina has a uniquely diverse landscape that stretches from coastal seascapes to urban centers to mountain tops. The state’s competitive economy is equally diverse, boasting tremendous residential growth, booming tourism, a dominant agriculture sector, a vibrant and growing business and industry sector, and top academic and research centers. However, there is one a common human need woven throughout every component of North Carolina’s economy – water. This report outlines five broad solutions to help North Carolina build water system, operational, financial, and strategic resilience.

The Roadmap to Value-Driven Health: Benchmarking Study Results and Implications for North Carolina

May 2018 | Download [PDF] | Pillar: Competitive Business Climate

The Roadmap to Value-Driven Health: Benchmarking Study Results and Implications for North Carolina benchmarks initiatives in states and regions that are successfully driving health care value, while also outlining possible next steps for North Carolina to do the same. This research was commissioned upon recommendation from the NC Chamber Foundation’s Health Care CEO Council, which made clear when reviewing the initial Roadmap to Value Driven Health study that more information was needed. Specifically, the council requested more research on potential models that could be implemented in North Carolina.

Roadmap to Career

August 2017 | Download [PDF] | Pillar: Education & Talent Supply

Securing and retaining qualified talent is one of the top challenges facing North Carolina employers. Businesses have job openings but are struggling to find people with the right skills to fill them, and the concern only grows as baby-boomer retirements draw near amid declining participation rates and rising skill requirements. This report is a call to action for all stakeholders along the workforce continuum, providing a baseline against which to measure improvements and progress within the education and workforce systems.

Environmental Regulatory Competitiveness Benchmarking for North Carolina

May 2017 | Download [PDF] | Pillar: Competitive Business Climate

North Carolina has experienced tremendous growth over the last several years – a surge that is only set to amplify. In order to keep up with this growth, there must be a sustained focus on cultivating a regulatory climate that supports a healthy environment and allows business to progress at the pace of the modern global economy. In an effort to analyze the state of North Carolina’s environmental regulatory competitiveness, the NC Chamber Foundation commissioned Environmental Regulatory Competitiveness Benchmarking for North Carolina, conducted by AECOM.

NC Chamber Healthcare Strategy Roadmap: Preliminary Report

May 2016 | Download [PDF] | Pillar: Competitive Business Climate

Even as North Carolina continues to secure its spot as one of the best places in the nation to do business, we remain behind the curve in maximizing health care value; our state ranked just 31st nationally in this important indicator in 2015 according to the United Health Foundation. This report is the initial effort installment as the NC Chamber Foundation works to build momentum behind our employer-driven Roadmap to Value-Driven Health in order to transform North Carolina into a top-ten state for health care value.

Spreading Economic Opportunity Across North Carolina

April 2016 | Download [PDF] | Pillar: Competitive Business Climate

Over the next 25 years the working-age population of many of our nonurban communities is projected to continue shrinking as new job seekers migrate to economic centers that have more readily available career opportunities. Spreading Economic Opportunity Across North Carolina offers a broad set of recommendations for North Carolina’s leaders to encourage public-private cooperative efforts that will capitalize on existing opportunities and create new ways to spur economic development in all corners of the state.

Technological Unemployment Study

December 2016 | Download [PDF] | Pillar: Education & Talent Supply

Nearly half of all occupations (44 percent) and total employees (48 percent) comprising North Carolina’s current workforce have a high probability (greater than 70 percent) of being replaced by technology in the coming years. The NC Chamber Foundation is already considering the future impacts of technological employment on our state. This report compiles a variety of previous research and outlines a number of key questions and considerations to help guide the next steps in this important conversation.

North Carolina Illustrated: A Visual Guide to Tax Reform

November 2015 | Download [PDF] | Pillar: Competitive Business Climate

In 2013, North Carolina lawmakers adopted legislation that fundamentally restructured the state’s tax code. The package included tax cuts for individuals and businesses, a simplified and more neutral tax system, and a stabilized revenue stream that better reflects North Carolina’s modern economy. How can taxpayers contextualize the dramatic changes that took place and what the overall impact has been? Has North Carolina truly become a more competitive state as a result of the reforms?

The NC Chamber Foundation commissioned the nonpartisan Tax Foundation to release North Carolina Illustrated: A Visual Guide to Tax Reform. This interactive report examines North Carolina’s tax system before and after the 2013 tax reforms, and illustrates how the reforms have repositioned North Carolina’s standing among competitor states.

Diversifying Revenues to Improve Commerce and Economic Prosperity

December 2014 | Download [PDF] | Pillar: Competitive Business Climate

For a number of years now, the business community and other pro-growth leaders have recognized the daunting challenge that an underfunded transportation network poses to a competitive future for North Carolina.

With that in mind, the NC Chamber Foundation commissioned the Institute for Transportation Research and Education at NC State University to conduct a study to find a solution that provides a diversified, stable and economically efficient revenue model that will meet North Carolina’s long-term transportation needs, as well as address current challenges. Diversifying Revenues to Improve Commerce and Economic Prosperity identified 16 recommendations for alternative funding methods.

North Carolina Workforce System Review and Options for Reform

April 2014 | Download [PDF] | Pillar: Education & Talent Supply

Reports indicated an increased need for effective coordination and delivery of employment training services, as well as a more productive way to match the needs of North Carolina employers with individuals that are looking for a job. Recognizing that North Carolina’s job creators are significant stakeholders in this process, the NC Chamber Foundation commissioned Doug Holmes, president of UWC, which provides strategic services on unemployment & workers’ compensation, to conduct an objective evaluation of the current workforce system in North Carolina. The report evaluates the strengths and weaknesses of the current system, federal and state performance measures, and best practices that may be employed to improve the workforce system.

North Carolina UI Solvency Study: Observations and Recommendations

May 2012 | Download [PDF] | Pillar: Competitive Business Climate

At the beginning of 2013, our state’s employers were facing a $2.6 billion debt to the federal government for North Carolina’s unemployment insurance system. North Carolina’s unemployment insurance system is funded solely by employers through state and federal unemployment payments. Therefore, North Carolina employers were scheduled to repay approximately $2.5 billion in principal and more than $500 million in interest from 2011 to 2019 to extinguish the state’s loan. The North Carolina Chamber Foundation commissioned a study to find best practices and realistic opportunities to reform our state’s broke and broken UI system.