As Inflation Soars, Economic Developers Should Promote the Cost-Savings of Moving to Wyoming
15 Jun 2022
Inflation has been reported to range from 6.8 to 8.2% for 2022 - staggering rates of inflation that haven’t been seen since the 1980’s. Everything from the cost of gas to crackers and milk at the grocery store have been impacted.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor, at the same time as inflation is rising, real average hourly earnings for all employees decreased by 0.6 percent. That’s the impact of inflation because it reflects a 1.0 percent increase in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U). What’s more alarming is the decrease in real average earnings year over year. From May 2021 to May 2022, they decreased by 3 percent.
What does the decrease in real average hourly earnings mean for Wyoming’s economic developers?
Quite simply it represents an opportunity to showcase the benefits of moving your family and business to Wyoming.
People and businesses can save money by moving to Wyoming.
There are multiple ways to save money by relocating to Wyoming - all of which should be actively promoted by economic developers through social media, digital ads and in conversations. Economic developers should promote the following ways to save -
#1 Lower your personal taxes by moving to Wyoming.
Wyoming has no state income tax - zero. Compare this to neighboring Utah’s 4.95%, Idaho’s 6% and Montana’s 6.75%. People in these, and 43 other states, can lower their expenses and keep more of their paycheck by making the move. When considering that real wages have decreased by 3% in the last year, moving to Wyoming, and eliminating state income tax, more than offsets inflation. Essentially, a family makes more each paycheck, even if their salary doesn’t go up. The best part of this strategy is that it continues to yield dividends year after year. Even when inflation calms down, people in Wyoming will still benefit from having no state income tax.
#2 Eliminate your corporate income tax by bringing your businesses to Wyoming.
Businesses receive tax benefits in Wyoming because there is no corporate income tax here. On the corporate side, 44 states levy a corporate income tax. Wyoming is one of just two states that have no personal or corporate income tax. This time, let's compare to states on the west and east coasts. In California corporations pay 8.84% in income tax. In Pennsylvania it’s 9.99% and in Florida it’s 5.5%.
A 2022 Tax Foundation report found that “Wyoming offers the lowest average effective tax rates for mature businesses and the seventh-lowest effective rates for new firms.” If inflation has decreased a company’s profitability, moving to Wyoming, and reducing overall taxes, can help to reverse this trend.
#3 Lower your cost of living in Wyoming.
It’s more affordable for families to live in Wyoming than the majority of U.S. states. This is important for business owners and their employees. In the first quarter of 2022, Wyoming’s overall cost of living was 93.9% (6.1% below the national average). By comparison, neighboring Montana’s cost of living was 104.4% and Colorado’s was 102.4%. Going further out, Oregon’s cost of living was 125.2% and New York’s was 152.1%. Moving to Wyoming not only lowers your taxes but also your overall cost of living.
#4 Wyoming offers incentives for new business and business expansion.
When businesses move to Wyoming (or expand here) they can qualify for a variety of financial incentives that can help to either finance the project or help to reduce the cost through grants and tax credits. For example, Wyoming’s New Market Tax Credits program has delivered $110 billion to over 6,500 projects since 2000.
#5 Land is cheap in Wyoming compared to other states.
There is plenty of land available for development in Wyoming, and it costs less than in most states. In some cases, communities have industrial land that can be sold at a reduced rate as an incentive to bring in a business that creates jobs. (Note: economic developers who have available land at discount rates should heavily promote it)
Don’t miss the opportunity to promote the financial advantages of moving to Wyoming.
Economic developers should consider the unique time we are living in. The impact of inflation is being felt the strongest it has been since 1981. People are desperate to save money and businesses are looking for ways to get their profitability back up. Wyoming could be the answer. An active audience is listening, so let’s get our message out!