Tax time list shows Minnesotans taxed at 6th-highest rate


As the deadline to Tax Day approaches, so does the focus on the amount of taxes we pay. WCCO reports that when all the taxes are added up and factored in, Minnesota has the sixth-highest tax rate in the country. The story cites 2011 numbers compiled by the U.S. Census Bureau to substantiate the claim.

Minnesota's lack of a tax on clothing is offset by the sales tax rate, which the station says is the nation's seventh-highest. Minnesotans also pay 28.5 cents in excise taxes for every gallon of gasoline, also the nation's seventh-highest such fuel tax.

Tim Myslajek, managing partner with accounting firm Myslajek, Kemp and Spencer, told the station higher taxes for those Minnesotans with higher incomes is another reason why the state is in the top tier.

“It can be skewed a little bit when you weigh out per capita what people pay,” Myslajek explained. “Taxes can be higher if your income is higher, but they can also be a lot lower if your income is lower.”

The Wall Street Journal noted that, on average, Americans paid 9.8 percent of their income in state and local taxes, on top of taxes collected by the federal government. The number in Minnesota is 10.7 percent.

There's been much discussion of late that compares the economic policies of Minnesota and neighboring Wisconsin. The Census Bureau statistics indicate that Wisconsin ranks as the fifth-highest taxed state in the nation.

Meanwhile, Bloomberg says statistics released Wednesday by the Census Bureau indicate U.S. states took in 6.1 percent more revenue in fiscal 2013 than they did the year before, accumulating a record $846.2 billion. The statistics provide information to policy analysts, the municipal finance industry, economic forecasters, and others about the fiscal health of state governments and the services they provide. Revenue statistics are broken down into 25 subcategories that cover collection on items such as motor fuel taxes, amusements taxes and hunting license taxes.

Revenue increased in all states but Alaska and Wyoming. The largest percentage increases was in North Dakota, where total tax revenues jumped to 27.8 percent. North Dakota also topped the list of states with the largest percentage increase in tax revenue from general sales taxes at 13 percent and the largest percentage increase in tax revenue from individual income taxes at 48.4 percent.

You can read highlights from the 2013 Annual Survey of State Government Tax Collections here.

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