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Under the voucher program, are businesses writing checks on New Hampshire’s bank account?

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The voucher program grants an 85% business tax credit for contributions businesses make to “scholarship organizations.”  The scholarship organization (we have one, the Network for Educational Opportunity, discussed here) can use those funds for tuition to any entity approved by the State as a non-public school.

When I was in businesses, I saw these high percentage tax credits as an opportunity to direct state expenditures in accordance with my interests.  Just write a check to the project instead of the State.  And when you look at the numbers, it really is as if the business is writing a check on the state’s bank account.

Say you’re a profitable business and write a $10,000 check to a scholarship organization.  Your New Hampshire business tax could be reduced by $9,350.  And your federal tax deduction  would be $221 more than it would have been.  So to make a $10,000, you would pay only $429 from your own funds.  You have, in effect, redirected $9,350 from the State’s general and education trust fund to a private, religious or home school in New Hampshire.

Here are the figures.  Click here if you want to experiment with your own figures.


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