States Where People Pay The Most (And Least) In Taxes

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5. Rhode Island
> Taxes paid by residents as pct. of income: 10.7%
> Total state and local taxes collected: $9.4 billion
> Pct. of total taxes paid by residents: 70.9%
> Pct. of total taxes paid by non-residents: 29.1%

Rhode Island is one of the smallest states and has one of the smallest revenues. Despite this, residents’ tax burdens are among the highest. Each year, the average Rhode Islander pays $671 in state “sin taxes,” or taxes on things such as alcohol, tobacco, and gambling. This is the second highest amount in the country, behind only Delaware. Part of the reason for this is that the state taxes each pack of cigarettes $3.46, the second highest in the country. The state’s tax burden is hurting business as well. Rhode Island has an exceptionally high corporate tax rate of 9% and was recently rated as the worst state for business by CNBC.

4. Wisconsin
> Taxes paid by residents as pct. of income: 11%
> Total state and local taxes collected: $41.7 billion
> Pct. of total taxes paid by residents: 77.9%
> Pct. of total taxes paid by non-residents: 22.1%

According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Wisconsin relies more on income and property taxes for its revenue than most states. In fact, both are approximately 25% higher than the national averages. The state receives a smaller portion of federal money than most others, leaving little room for this money to offset state spending. Worst still, taxes on industrial property owners rank among the bottom half, and often the bottom third, of the country, while residential taxes are among the greatest. According to a study by the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, Wisconsin’s middle class pays a bigger share of government spending than any other state, except for New York.

3. Connecticut
> Taxes paid by residents as pct. of income: 12%
> Total state and local taxes collected: $33.3 billion
> Pct. of total taxes paid by residents: 80.1%
> Pct. of total taxes paid by non-residents: 19.9%

The state with the highest per capita income in the country collects more than $5,000 per resident on average, the most in the country. It is the 30th most populous state in the U.S., but it collects the 19th most in tax revenue. Less than 20% of Connecticut’s tax revenue comes from non-residents and business. According to the Tax Foundation, the state ranks 47th in business environment, with a 7.5% tax on businesses. The state’s residents have a higher tax burden than all but two other states. Part of the reason for this has to do with the fact that the taxes Connecticut commuters pay to the empire state counts as part of the Connecticut tax burden.

2. New York
> Taxes paid by residents as pct. of income: 12.1%
> Total state and local taxes collected: $243.9 billion
> Pct. of total taxes paid by residents: 71.4%
> Pct. of total taxes paid by non-residents: 28.6%

New York places much of its tax burden on residents from other states. Consider, for example, the amount of state revenue derived from New York City tourism, or those who commute to the city for work. Despite this, state residents maintain the second largest tax burden in the country. The state has one of the highest state and local tax collections per capita, an average of $6,884. It has one of the highest combined averages local and state sales tax rates — 8.3%. The Big Apple also has a number of exceptionally high excise taxes, such as its $4.35 tax on each pack of cigarettes, the highest rate in the country. Additionally, the state has exceptionally high property tax rates. According to the Census Bureau, the top ten counties in the U.S. with the highest property taxes as a percentage of home values are all in New York.

1. New Jersey
> Taxes paid by residents as pct. of income: 12.2%
> Total state and local taxes collected: $85.9 billion
> Pct. of total taxes paid by residents: 79.5%
> Pct. of total taxes paid by non-residents: 20.5%

New Jersey residents have a higher tax burden than those of any other state. As a percent of their income, taxes in the Garden State were 12.2% in 2009, nearly double that of Alaska. Like Connecticut, much of this tax burden comes from state residents who commute to New York City and pay taxes there as well. This illustrates how a state resident contributes to the tax base of multiple states. Although not reflected in the percent of income residents pay in state and local taxes, it is nonetheless an additional burden commuters have to bear. According to Tax Foundation, the state has the third-worst environment for business in the country, with a corporate tax rate of 9%. It also has an above-average sales tax, as well as one of the highest rates in the country for cigarettes and liquor.