Letter: Minnesota's high taxes stifles the economy, jobs
Passage of Minnesota's largest tax increase in history by the DFL-controlled Legislature has triggered a barrage of editorial comments both pro and con. Although most have expressed strong opinions, few have provided factual data in support of th...
Passage of Minnesota's largest tax increase in history by the DFL-controlled Legislature has triggered a barrage of editorial comments both pro and con. Although most have expressed strong opinions, few have provided factual data in support of their positions. Here are the facts regarding Minnesota's tax burden per capita.
Minnesota's per capita tax burden, at $2,871, is fourth-highest in the nation, while the national average is $2,000. Wisconsin's is $2,283 in 12th place, and North Dakota $1,929 and 27th place. South Dakota is near the bottom, at 49th place, with per capita tax burden of $1,369, and Iowa is 34th with $1,758.
These data were last revised on March 6 by the U.S. Census Bureau and represent an accurate, non-partisan viewpoint. I am certain most reasonable people would agree there is no logical reason why Minnesota should be the fourth-highest taxing state in the nation and substantially above all surrounding states with similar geographic and demographic characteristics. It is significant to note that Minnesota's tax per capita is $1,113 higher than Iowa and more than double that of South Dakota.
At these "sky high" taxing levels, Minnesota should already have the best education system, the finest highways, excellent fire and police protection and a strong social "safety net" for those in need. We do not. Why? The clear answer is that, we have too much wasteful governmental spending and too many highly paid bureaucrats living off taxpayers. Moreover, the situation will only get worse unless taxpayers wake up and demand accountability from their elected representatives.
It is a proven fact that high taxes stifle economic growth and kill jobs. Minnesota is already losing business investment, jobs and retirees to states with less hostile tax environments. It is no surprise that Fargo, N.D., and Sioux Falls, S.D., were recently recognized as the two highest metropolitan growth areas in the Midwest.
Future generations cannot survive on delivering pizza and mowing each other's lawns. Minnesota needs a healthy business climate and high-paying jobs to employ a well-educated and highly dedicated work force. Gov. Pawlenty is right. It is time for our liberal "tax and spend" legislators to regain their "common sense." Chasing businesses, jobs and people out of state with confiscatory levels of taxation is not a wise public policy for the state of Minnesota.