Business & Innovation Friendly

Tennessee is one of the most business-friendly states, with low debt and a pro-business regulatory environment, and Oak Ridge is no exception. While Oak Ridge has a significant union presence, owed primarily to the presence of the Department of Energy and Department of Defense, Tennessee is still a right-to-work state. Our state and local tax burdens are among the lowest in the country, and our state budget operates with a healthy surplus rather than a deficit, which means a stable environment that companies can thrive in without having to watch for changing costs and regulations at every turn.

When it comes to innovation, it’s hard to find a better place outside of Silicon Valley. Yet, once the costs of doing business are factored into the picture, the Oak Ridge Corridor is one of the best places you could possibly consider to locate an innovative private business.

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Pro-Business Environment

  • TN is a right-to-work state with low union participation.
  • TN has a long history of fiscal responsibility even across party lines.
  • TN has the lowest state debt per capita in the country, per The Tax Foundation.
  • TN has made pro-business changes to its tort and workers compensation laws
  • TN was listed 4th in the U.S. for Business Climate in 2021 by Business Facilities 

Favorable Tax Situation

Income Taxes

  • No state personal income tax

Property Taxes

Note: The City of Oak Ridge spreads across both Anderson and Roane Counties. About 16% of the taxable real parcels are located in the Roane County section of Oak Ridge. 

  • No state property tax
  • City of Oak Ridge Property Tax Rate is $2.32 per $100 assessed. 
  • Anderson County Property Tax Rate is $2.46 per $100 assessed.
  • Roane County Property Tax Rate is $2.4526 per $100 assessed.
  • Ratio of Assessment for Residential Property is 25%
  • Ratio of Assessment for Commercial Property is 40%
  • Ratio of Assessment for Personal (Equipment) is 30%

Corporate & Sales Taxes

  • Competitive corporate taxes through the state (26.1% combined corporate tax rate)
  • The sales tax rate for Oak Ridge is 9.75%

Competitive Building & Operational Costs

  • Building costs in this area are 9% below the national average (
  • The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) offers electricity at significant savings compared to averages across the U.S.
    • Industrial electrical rates are 28% below the national average (
    • Commercial electrical rates match the national average (
    • Residential electrical rates are 18% below the national average (

Advantageous Workforce Development 

  • A right-to-work state
  • One of the 10 lowest unionized states in the U.S. (
  • Business-favorable wage rates across most industries
  • Customized workforce training available from multiple organizations
  • State-funded tuition available for two-year colleges for high school graduates via Tennessee Promise and Tennessee Reconnect

Innovation-Friendly Resources

The City of Oak Ridge and the Oak Ridge Corridor serve as a central hub for innovation in the Tennessee Valley. World-class resources such as the Department of Energy's integrated research centers both create and foster innovation through programs like the technology transfer program. The nearby Y-12 National Security Complex also offers commercial and federal intellectual property and research agreements, along with regional educational partners like the University of Tennessee's UT Research Foundation.

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Do Business in Oak Ridge, Tennessee