10 Worst States for Your Tax Dollars
Life + Money

10 Worst States for Your Tax Dollars


The majority of Americans think they pay too much in taxes; but it gets even more painful when states waste taxpayers’ hard-earned money.

Now that most of us have filed our returns, the ball is in states’ hands to spend our money wisely and to provide residents with essential services -- but we often forget that part.

“There’s an obvious disconnect in the minds of taxpayers between the amount we fork over each April and what we ultimately receive from the government in return,” noted WalletHub. “It’s difficult to discern the government’s precise role in our day-to-day quality of life and overall pursuit of happiness.”

In a report released in early April, WalletHub compared the quality and efficiency of state government services across six categories—infrastructure, education, health, safety, economy and pollution—to the different rates at which Americans are taxed in each state and municipality.

It found that Arkansas is the state where residents receive the worst government services compared to how much they pay in state taxes.

Slideshow: The 10 Worst States for Your Tax Dollars

More than half of the ten states that provide the worst return on investment were in the south, including Mississippi, Louisiana, North Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama and Kentucky. The report also found that taxpayers in red states get a worse bang for their tax buck than those in blue states.

Obviously, there’s no such thing as a free lunch. As you could expect, some of these states, including Mississippi, Louisiana, West Virginia and Alabama have among the lowest tax rates in the nation. Then there’s just plain waste like in California, which has the second highest average annual state and local taxes after New York at $9,509. The Golden State was also the seventh worst state in the country when it comes to tax ROI.

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