Vermont near the bottom of tax rankings again

by Robert Maynard

It should come as no surprise that Vermont has once again rated as one the states with the highest tax burdens in the nation.  We haven’t see anything yet, wait until the taxes are raised to pay for ShumlinCare.  The ranking is from the Tax Foundation and the story is brought to you by Vermont Business Magazine:

A national rating firm has once again put Vermont near the bottom for business development based on taxation. The Tax Foundation’s 2014 edition of the State Business Tax Climate Index states that its analysis enables business leaders, government policymakers, and taxpayers to gauge how their states’ tax systems compare.

The 10 best states in this year’s Index are:

  1. Wyoming
  2. South Dakota
  3. Nevada
  4. Alaska
  5. Florida
  6. Washington
  7. Montana
  8. New Hampshire
  9. Utah
  10. Indiana

The absence of a major tax is a dominant factor in vaulting many of these ten states to the top of the rankings. Property taxes and unemployment insurance taxes are levied in every state, but there are several states that do without one or more of the major taxes: the corporate tax, the individual income tax, or the sales tax. Wyoming, Nevada, and South Dakota have no corporate or individual income tax; Alaska has no individual income or state-level sales tax; Florida has no individual income tax; and New Hampshire and Montana have no sales tax.

But this does not mean that a state cannot rank in the top ten while still levying all the major taxes. Indiana, which ousted Texas from the top ten this year, and Utah have all the major tax types, but levy them with low rates on broad bases.

The 10 lowest ranked, or worst, states in this year’s Index are:

  1. Maryland
  2. Connecticut
  3. Wisconsin
  4. North Carolina
  5. Vermont
  6. Rhode Island
  7. Minnesota
  8. California
  9. New Jersey
  10. New York

The states in the bottom 10 suffer from the same afflictions: complex, non-neutral taxes with comparatively high rates.