ARIZONA’S BUSINESS CLIMATE: SUNNY
Governor Jan Brewer is committed to making Arizona the “Solar Capital of the World.” This commitment, supported by aggressive state financial incentives and federal tax credits, has created a climate perfectly suited to put Arizona on that path. Driven in part by Arizona’s Renewable Energy Standard (RES), which requires that 15 percent of retail power production come from renewable sources by 2025, Arizona’s solar installations grew by 250 percent in 2010, ranking it fourth in the U.S. according to the Solar Energy Industries Association.
Arizona’s competitiveness package, which went into effect July 1, 2011, provides aggressive new pro-business features, including:
- Quality Jobs Program, with corporate tax credits of up to $9,000 for each qualifying new job.
- Arizona Competes deal-closing fund.
- R&D tax credit for increased activities with an additional 10 percent if partnering with a university.
- A four-year, phased-in reduction of the state’s corporate income tax from 6.97 percent to 4.9 percent beginning in 2014. This will give Arizona the nation’s fifth most competitive corporate income-tax rate.
- An increase in the electable state corporate income-tax sales factor to 100 percent, up from the current 80 percent.
- A 5 percent acceleration of the depreciation schedule for business personal property.
In addition, Arizona boasts:
- Some of the lowest workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance costs in the U.S.
- Industry-focused university programs designed to produce a highly specialized workforce.
- An advanced transportation system.
- Corporate and payroll taxes well below almost every other state.
It all adds up to a consistent pro-business environment that continues to revitalize and cultivate its businesses, old and new.
Its compelling business incentives, optimum weather conditions and close proximity to key solar markets have brought industry giants such as Suntech Power Holdings Co. and Abengoa Solar Inc. to Arizona, launching the state into the renewable energy global limelight.
Arizona’s commitment to becoming a global leader in solar energy, combined with the ongoing success of industry leaders operating in the state, has helped to secure Arizona’s position as a major global center for the solar industry.
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