PLI PLUS 2.0 is now available – click here to test drive the new platform.
Skip to main content

Hot Topics in State and Local Tax 2021

Speaker(s): Christopher D. Lloyd, Gopika Parikh, Jeanne H. Schroeder, Michael Rato, Morgan Scarboro, Nikki E. Dobay, Sarah M. Toi, Scott Roberti
Recorded on: Mar. 9, 2021
PLI Program #: 304642

Chris Lloyd leads the McGuireWoods Consulting infrastructure and economic development team where he specializes in site selection and economic development incentives negotiations. Since 1998, Chris has worked on dozens of high profile, corporate expansions and relocations across the country. Chris has also worked closely with clients on numerous public-private partnership projects for transportation and other infrastructure, and played a leading role in the development and passage of Virginia's public-private partnership laws, which have since become model legislation for use in other states.

Prior to joining McGuireWoods Consulting, Chris served for nearly five years in the Office of the Secretary of Commerce and Trade under Virginia Governors Allen and Wilder. In this position, he was responsible for legislative, budgetary, and regulatory coordination and development within that Secretariat which managed the state's economic development programs.

Chris graduated from the College of William & Mary in 1993. He lives in Richmond with his wife, Megan, and children, Ryan and Meredith.

Gopika Parikh leads the Business Credits and Incentives (C&I) Practice for the Financial Services Office (FSO) of Ernst & Young LLP.  She has more than nineteen years of experience with the Firm.  During her tenure at Ernst & Young, she has successfully spearheaded projects to secure and implement tax and financial incentives on behalf of clients across industries, but has had a special focus the financial services industry since 2011. 

For the financial services industry, Gopika has focused on credits and incentives as they relate to the insurance industry, banking and capital markets, as well as asset management and private equity.   She helps clients understand the tax implications of relocation, expansion and consolidation, develops analysis tools to provide detailed modeling of potential tax effects, and identifies incentives that reward business decisions that also help communities. She had led efforts nationally for the CARES Act, Disaster credits, and EY’s Affordable Care Act (ACA) Reporting services for FSO. 

External to EY, he has presented at Banking and Capital Markets Tax Institute (2020), the E.Commerce conference for Commercial Real Estate Development Corporation (NAIOP, 2014) on Data Center incentives, National Premium Tax Credit conference (2011 – 2013), and for Area Development Magazine (2010) on Federal incentives.  She has also co-authored articles in Site Selection Magazine (July 2014 – “Data Centers:  A perspective on site selection, incentives and outsourcing.”), the Journal of Multistate Taxation (January 2013 – “Think You Can’t Use Tax Incentives, Think Again!”) , and for the Institute of Professionals in Taxation (IPT) (July 2008 – “Gone Green Yet?”).  Gopika is an Enrolled Agent, which authorizes her to represents clients before the Internal Revenue Service, holds a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies in Business and Communications from the University of Maryland Baltimore County and a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Baltimore.  She is also accredited as a LEED-AP (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) by the US Green Building Council.

Prior to joining Ernst & Young LLP, Gopika spent six years in business development and project management for business consulting firms, executing on clients’ national and global initiatives, including leading a large project in Asia that spanned India, Thailand, China, Japan and Hong Kong.

Jeanne has over 25 years experience in state and local indirect tax with her primary focus in Property Tax.  Jeanne brings knowledge from a myriad of perspectives, having owned her own property tax consulting firm, working in the manufacturing industry sector and serving as the Northeast Regional Property Tax Lead for a Big 4 Firm.  In addition, Jeanne has extensive training and experience with process improvement methodologies (Lean Thinking).

During her years in industry, Jeanne formed and led the property tax department of a $60B multi-national conglomerate.  In this role, Jeanne managed all aspects of property tax compliance, real and personal valuation review, appeals, audits, planning, transfer tax and credits and incentive reviews.  During her tenure, Jeanne saved the company $70M in property tax.

Jeanne has extensive public speaking experience, including external conferences and internal / client meetings.

Jeanne served on the Tolland Town Council (elected) as well as the Tolland Board of Assessment Appeals (appointed).


  • Pace University, BBA-Public Accounting
    • CPA Prep
  • Darden Executive Masters Program (UVA)
  • Numerous IPT / IAAO Courses


MICHAEL RATO is a Partner at the law firm of McElroy, Deutsch, Mulvaney & Carpenter, LLP and the Co-Manager of MDM&C’s Commercial Litigation Group.  His practice focuses on unclaimed property law, complex commercial litigation, and regulatory matters.

His unclaimed property practice concentrates on advising financial institutions, broker/dealers, and corporations on all aspects of unclaimed property law. Mike has defended companies in unclaimed property audits, assisted with voluntary compliance initiatives, and conducted internal investigations into potential unclaimed property law violations. He has also counseled financial institutions on the application of unclaimed property laws to electronic payment systems, stored value card programs, and corporate reorganizations. Mike is a frequent speaker on unclaimed property topics and is the author of the unclaimed property blog Escheatable ( He is also a two time co-recipient of the Unclaimed Property Professionals’ Organization Award of Merit.

In addition to his unclaimed property practice, Mike represents banks, broker/dealers, and other companies in regulatory and administrative matters.  He has represented clients before the Securities and Exchange Commission, FINRA, N.J. Department of Banking & Insurance, the N.Y. and N.J. Comptroller’s Offices, and other regulators. His matters have involved credit default swap and derivatives trading, conflicts of interest, advertising rules, and regulatory reporting requirements. 

His commercial litigation practice encompasses a wide variety of business and commercial disputes.  He has represented clients in litigated matters and arbitration proceedings involving contract disputes, patent infringement, shareholder oppression, license agreements, consumer fraud matters, and business torts.  Mike has also represented clients in appellate matters before all levels of state and federal courts.

Mike is admitted to practice in the States of New Jersey and New York, and in a number of federal trial and appellate courts.  He is a 1998 graduate of the Stevens Institute of Technology, and received his Juris Doctorate from Seton Hall University School of Law in 2001. At Seton Hall, he was a member of the Editorial Board of The Seton Hall Law Review and a recipient of the Daniel J. Moore Scholarship. 

In addition to his practice, Mike is MDM&C’s Assistant General Counsel.

Morgan joined MultiState in 2018 and currently serves as Manager, Tax Policy and Economist. In her role, she focuses primarily on corporate income tax issues. Prior to this, she worked as a policy analyst at the Tax Foundation's Center for State Tax Policy. Her research has been cited in national and state-based publications, including the Associated Press, CNN Money, NPR, and The Washington Post. She holds a Bachelor of Science in economics and a minor in political science from Georgia College & State University and a Certificate in State & Local Taxation from Georgetown Law.

Nikki Dobay is a nationally known state tax lawyer with significant experience and understanding of state tax policy. Nikki regularly consults clients on sophisticated multistate tax issues as well as the consequences and planning opportunities related to corporate M&A transactions. She represents clients in all stages of state and local tax controversy – from audits to appellate litigation – involving income and franchise taxes, sales and use taxes, property taxes, and constitutional issues.

Prior to joining Eversheds Sutherland, Nikki spent five years as Senior Tax Counsel of the Council On State Taxation (COST). During her time with COST, Nikki worked with their membership of nearly 550 multistate corporations, where she advocated for COST’s mission: to preserve and promote equitable and nondiscriminatory state taxation of multi-jurisdictional entities. Nikki has worked on legislative, administrative and judicial advocacy efforts covering an array of state and local tax policy issues. Focusing on the Western states, she has testified before countless state legislatures and taxing agencies and has worked closely with policy makers on the significant state tax issues in those states, including the recently enacted Oregon Corporate Activity Tax. She regularly engages with statewide business and taxpayer associations, departments of revenue, as well as national tax administrator organizations, including the Multistate Tax Commission (MTC), the Federation of Tax Administrators (FTA), and the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), on key SALT issues impacting multi-jurisdictional taxpayers.

Nikki also gained experience working in the national office of a Big Four accounting firm and at large corporate law firm in Oregon, where she assisted with clients with multistate tax issues and Oregon tax controversy matters, including proceedings in the Oregon Tax Court.

Nikki is admitted to the Oregon State Bar and the Ohio State Bar. She has submitted her application to the State Bar of California. Her work is supervised by California State Bar members.

Sarah is a Principal in EY’s Unclaimed Property and Escheat Services (UPES) Practice.  She has 15 years of unclaimed property consulting and compliance experience, which includes providing services to her clients such as: state and third-party audit defense, voluntary compliance assistance, statistical estimation of unclaimed property identification, exposure calculation analysis, remediation efforts, policy and procedures reviews, restructuring and annual compliance.  Sarah has developed deep technical knowledge through working with clients of varying size both in terms of organizational structure and revenue, in a wide range of industries.  This experience includes large project management, data management and forensic review, and analysis of accounting policies.  Sarah has helped clients through the entire life cycle of unclaimed property review, including education and awareness, issue identification, exposure calculation, remediation, reporting/disclosure, and policy enhancements.

Sarah holds a B.S. in Accounting from the University Of Connecticut and an M.S. in Accounting also from the University Of Connecticut School Of Business.  She holds a certified accounts payable professional designation, issued by the Institute of Financial Operations.  Additionally, Sarah is a member of the Unclaimed Property Professionals Organization (“UPPO”). 


Based in Stamford, Connecticut, Scott is a member of EY’s National Tax team leading the Firm’s State Policy Services practice.

Scott and his team have deep experience and longstanding relationships in the state tax policy arena. They work across various industry sectors with clients of all sizes, including Fortune 500 clients, to help them develop and execute their state policy plan, tailored to the size, complexity, and unique aspects of each client. Depending on the client, that could mean monitoring and tracking of state tax policy developments, in-depth analyses, multistate tax policy strategy development and support, or state policy advocacy by engaging with policymakers and industry leaders.

Scott’s industry background leading the state policy team at a Fortune 10 company informs his development at EY of coordinated, cross-functional, and proactive strategies tailored to clients’ needs and resources. During his industry tenure he developed successful state tax policy models using a wing-to-wing approach from issue identification to government facing engagement. These models included boundary-less team effort from tax, government affairs & policy, business stakeholders and strategic external networks.

He has served as Co-Chair Council on a State Taxation Legislative & Policy Committee, has testified before State legislatures, and has spoken before many national associations including the National Governors Association and National Conference of State Legislatures.

Scott is a frequent leader for state chamber coalitions focused on developing consensus on business or industry-specific tax regimes in collaboration with state tax officials.

He formerly served on Connecticut’s Economic Competitive Council, appointed by former State Senator John McKinney.