If the fairness issue can’t move the serious people to start the conversation on tax restructuring (and Washington State does have the most regressive tax structure in the nation), perhaps the negative economic impact of our current tax structure will?
Washington is among the states that depend most heavily on sales taxes for revenue, and a new report links a decline in growth of such funds to the rising concentration of wealth for the richest U.S. households.
The study by credit-ratings agency Standard & Poor’s shows a significant decline in annual average state tax growth among the 10 most sales tax-dependent states, which includes Washington.
That report ties the slowed growth to rising income inequality, which appears to stunt overall economic growth. S&P also links it to a slowdown in average yearly gains in state tax revenues.
Washington is in fact the most sales-tax-dependent state in the nation, and it is crippling our ability to make the human and physical infrastructure investments we need. Our state’s inability to fund McCleary? Blame the sales tax. King County Metro’s 400,000 hours of service cuts? Blame the sales tax.
Seriously, serious people, we need to add some sort of tax on income and/or wealth into the mix.