Building an Economy that Works for Everyone

Context is key on taxes and spending

David Goldstein beautifully parses the pundits’ (and politicians’) pronouncements on state budgets, taxes and economic growth here. The highlights:

  • General fund spending under Gov. Gregoire has merely followed the same trend established during the 1990s
  • As a share of the total state economy, Washington’s 2007-2009 budget actually represents a reduced investment – that is, a smaller share of state resources than any of the six budgets that directly precede it.
  • A reasoned approach to measuring taxes and spending looks at it as a percentage of personal income. Washington currently ranks 36th nationwide…and falling…on that scale.
  • Washington boasts the most regressive tax structure in the nation — one in which the bottom 20% of wage earners pay 17.6% of income in state and local taxes while the wealthiest pay only 3.1%.

There’s more – take a look.

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