In a couple recent posts, Poverty, Taxes and Getting Skin in the Game here on this blog, and Are You Overtaxed? over at Freedom is Groovy, Mr. Groovy and I exchanged some thoughts on taxation. One of the things we both noted is that our government, at all levels, needs to be more efficient in the way it spends taxpayer’s dollars.
Earlier today, WalletHub released its latest analysis of the U.S. tax landscape, an in-depth look at the states with the Best & Worst Taxpayer Return on Investment in 2016. WalletHub used 20 metrics to compare the quality and efficiency of state-government services across five distinct categories — Education, Health, Safety, Economy, and Infrastructure & Pollution — taking into account the drastically different rates at which citizens are taxed in each state.
The top three states with the best taxpayer Return on Investment (ROI) were New Hampshire, South Dakota and Colorado. Heading up the worst states? New Mexico, Vermont, and Connecticut.
Some highlights comparing the best and worst:
- California has the highest proportion of major roads that are in poor condition, 51 percent, which is seven times higher than in Florida, the state with the lowest, 7 percent.
- Alabama has the highest infant mortality rate per 1,000 live births, 8.68, which is two times higher than in California, the state with the lowest, 4.30.
- Alaska has the highest violent-crime rate per 1,000 residents, 6.36, which is six times higher than in Vermont, the state with the lowest, 0.99.
- Louisiana has the highest incarceration rate per 100,000 residents age 18 or older, 1,072, which is six times higher than in Maine, the state with the lowest, 189.
- Wisconsin has the highest “public university system” score, which is three times higher than in Nevada and New Mexico, the states with the lowest.
- Red and Blue States nearly tie in terms of taxpayer return on investment, with Red States yielding slightly better ROIs.
Check out WalletHub for the full report to see where your state ranks.