NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis


October 18, 2004

Taxpayers in the state of Washington carry the highest tax burden in the Northwest, even though citizen tax-reduction initiatives have taken effect, according to the Evergreen Freedom Foundation.

While progress has been made due mainly to citizen tax-reduction initiatives, Washington currently ranks higher than its neighbors in Idaho and Oregon in terms of state and local tax burden:

  • Washington motorists pays 28 cents per gallon in gas tax, the highest in the Northwest and the third-highest in the nation.
  • Washington residents pay about $100.90 in state and local taxes per $1,000 of income -- a decline over six years, but still the highest in the Northwest.
  • Furthermore, Washington residents are not allowed to deduct state sales taxes from their federal income taxes, unlike other states.

At current taxation levels, Washington's tax revenues are expected to increase by $1.7 billion for the 2005 - 2007 budget compared to the current budget, although desired spending by policymakers will likely result in a $1.1 billion deficit, says Evergreen.

Source: Jason Mercier, "Washington Still Tops Northwest in State and Local Tax Burden," Policy Highlighter, Vol. 14, No. 21, October 1, 2004, Evergreen Freedom Foundation.

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