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Old 11-29-2008, 11:24 PM
Location: Rockport Texas from El Paso
2,601 posts, read 8,390,147 times
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I looked at that comparative study and although the researchers meant well there is one glaring error.

The assessment process. Many states have laws saying it should be at 100% of market value but even among those places there is a wide variance. As to the other states - one can't compare apples to oranges.

Someone needs to do a better study.
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Old 11-30-2008, 08:15 AM
Location: Forests of Maine
36,261 posts, read 59,458,457 times
Reputation: 28744
Originally Posted by ocean2026 View Post
... As to the other states - one can't compare apples to oranges.

Someone needs to do a better study.
In the attempt to publish a study that compares apples to oranges, I do understand the idea behind the 'tax burden' thing.

If you lump all taxes collected in a state. All town taxes, all income taxes, all gas taxes, all sales taxes, all dog and hunting taxes. Lump them all together into one number.

Then guess at what you think every household grosses every year.

And compare the state's total Revenue with the average household income.

This is an attempt at comparing apples to oranges.

What percentage of the 'average' income would be an even share of the state's cost of operation.

Assuming that everywhere in the state had the same exact cost-of-living, and the same exact standard-of-living, this method might mean more. But in reality it would require a homogenized population.

Maine has the Volvo line.

One area, a big city and it's suburbs with a very high cost-of-operation. Lots of municipal services are expected in those towns.

We all know that living in Los Angelos is expensive, who would have dreamed of building a city with no water supply? So the water is pumped in [uphill] from hundreds of miles away. So you have a massive city with no water, and 200 miles away you have a desert with less than 1 person per square mile [Inyo, Death Valley, San Bernadino, Palm Springs, Mojave, Sparks]. Now if you drew a political boundary of a new state lumping that one city and it's suburbs together with the massive unpopulated areas, together the 'tax-burden' of that desert would appear to be extremely high. Even though folks in the desert have very low taxes and no municipal services.

Now California has a couple massive urban areas, and it also has a vast overwhelming majority of it's land mass in rural land with very low populations [including the Sierra Nevada Mountain range for example] with no municipal services.

In this manner Maine and California are similar.

A small portion is high cost urban with lots of municipal services, and the majority is low cost rural.

That is why relying on the 'tax burden' is so unreliable in Maine.
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