N.Y. has steepest tax burdenG. Scott Thomas of Business First of Buffalo
The bureau totaled up the money collected by all states, counties, cities, towns, villages and special districts during the 2001-02 fiscal year, then divided those revenues by the population in each state.
New York's state and local governments earned the dubious honor of first place by collecting $4,645 in taxes from each man, woman and child across the state. Only two other states finished above $4,000 in per capita tax revenues: Connecticut and New Jersey.
New York's tax load, as measured by the Census Bureau, is 48 percent steeper than the national average of $3,143 per person. And it's 114 percent above the state at the bottom of the list, Alabama, whose state and local governments collected $2,170 per capita in 2001-02.
Detailed statistics on state and local taxation are part of the Census Bureau's new 728-page report on government finances, which was released at the beginning of November.
The report also contains breakdowns for specific types of taxes:
- New York has no peer in the category of state and local income taxes, pulling in $1,844 per person from that source. That's far and away the highest figure in the nation.
Maryland has the second-heaviest income tax load, $1,468 per capita. Rounding out the top five are Massachusetts, Delaware and Minnesota.
The typical state collected $802 in income taxes in 2001-02. New York is 130 percent above that average.
- America's steepest property taxes aren't found in New York, but in a neighboring state. New Jersey is No. 1 with a property tax load of $1,872 per resident. New York is fifth at $1,402.
The five states with the heaviest property taxes are all in the Northeast. Joining New Jersey and New York in that group are Connecticut, New Hampshire and Maine.
New York stands 45 percent above the U.S. average for property taxes, which is $969 per individual.
- Sales and gross receipts taxes are favored by Western states. Washington state takes in the most money in this category, $1,974 from each man, woman and child. The two runners-up, both above $1,750, are Hawaii and Nevada.
New York ranks 17th in sales tax collections, bringing in $1,175 per person. That's only 4 percent above the national average of $1,125.