Local and state taxes as a percent of personal income are not really the issue. A more important issue is the value received for tax dollars spent.
Taxpayers are consumers of government goods and services. The question they must always be asking and answering is: are we getting value for the tax dollars we spend?
Here are some questions taxpayers may want to consider about taxes from any governmental source:
•If we want lower taxes, what are we willing to give up? What can the government do less of or not do at all that will reduce the amount of money it needs to operate?
•If a service is important to us, are we willing to pay higher taxes or sustain the current rates?
•Are the services being delivered in a reasonably efficient manner? Can operating efficiencies reduce the money required to maintain the same level of service? Could the service be done less expensively in the private sector?
•Is the tax burden shared in an equitable manner? Are all segments, residents and businesses, paying their fair share and how is that share determined?
•Are exorbitant fees replacing tax increases? Should some government services be funded strictly by user fees?