Tuesday, July 05, 2005

State spending, taxes and results

Operating under the assumption that sunshine is the best disinfectant, here’s a quick rundown of available info about state tax statistics and spending habits. That Louisiana fails to get good results for the money it spends is a given. A quick glance at national ranking of performance indicators proves that. See, for example, indicators of child well-being. The Tax Foundation maintains information about the tax climate of the 50 states. Here’s the Foundation’s tax data page for Louisiana. Info about Louisiana’s state and local tax burden is here, again from the Tax Foundation. Here’s the U.S. Census Bureau’s breakdown of total taxes and tax per capita. Meanwhile, Louisiana state rep Tim Burns highlights state spending info on his personal website. Citing a 2004 book titled The Price of Government (excerpt here) Burns notes the following statistics on state spending comparing Louisiana to other states in the region: Louisiana: $4,141.04 Alabama: $3,835.96 Florida: $3,538.05 Texas: $2,987.99 Georgia: $1,972.96 Mississippi: $1,584.59 Isn’t it time to start asking why Louisiana spends so much but gets so little?