Survey: New Hampshire has best return on taxes in the nation

By Brent Addleman | The Center Square

The Granite State has the best return on investment when it comes to taxes, a survey says.

WalletHub, a personal finance website owned by Evolution Finance, released an analysis saying 73% of people polled do not believe the government is spending their tax dollars in an effective manner. The poll focused on education, health, safety, economy, and infrastructure and pollution across 29 key metrics.

In the survey, New Hampshire ranked first in the country for taxpayer return on investment; third in total taxes paid per capita; and fourth in overall government services.

Dr. Stephen J. Lusch, associate professor of accounting at Texas Christian University, said it was difficult to determine if high tax burdens lead to better government services. His comments, provided by the survey company, reflected a national view rather than focusing on New Hampshire.

“We can say that higher tax burdens likely lead to more government services,” Lusch said in the report. “Whether more government services equate to ‘better’ government services is a value judgment for each individual taxpayer.”

Lusch said if higher tax revenues permit a town to hire more teachers in an effort to decrease class sizes, then the taxpayers with children in school would likely view it as “better government services.”

New Hampshire scored 68.17 in the survey, with its No. 4 rank in overall government services ranking. The state earned a score of 15 for education; seven in health; one in safety; five in the economy; and 37 for infrastructure and pollution.

Lusch said that one trend he spotted in using tax revenue more efficiently was the rise of evidence-based budgeting in state and local governments.

“Under evidence-based budgeting, budget requests are accompanied by research to support the request,” Lusch said in the report. “That is, a budget manager cannot simply request a 10% increase in her budget for the year. Instead, the proposed increase would need to be accompanied by research to support the budget increase.”

He said one caveat is that research could be cherry-picked in a manner that would support any budget increase.

WalletHub, according to the report, calculated the return on investment by comparing the quality of government services received by residents and the total state and local taxes paid.

Image courtesy of Public domain

7 thoughts on “Survey: New Hampshire has best return on taxes in the nation

  1. New Hampshire has a large tax base south of Concord. They manage better as they have the Seacoast and the Lakes Region holding more wealth than the Northern counties. Of all the thirteen New England States, NH manages much better, but it is still expensive to own property there. How they weather the coming implosion will be interesting to see.

  2. The results of electing sensible problem solvers as apposed to our leftist lunatics that are stuck on stupid agendas. Elections have consequences and the proof is in the pudding. NH works, VT sucks at a great cost with no results. NH gets a A for performance VT gets a F- or G if there’s any of them.

    • You should read the report. Strange that this article doesn’t mention that Vermont ranks 3rd over all while NH ranks 4th.

      • Everyone should, since this article links to the wrong report.
        It does not say VT ranks 3rd overall.
        It actually says that VT ranks 44th overall on Taxpayer Return On Investment, which is the topic of the study.
        VT does rank 3rd in the overall amount of government services provided (compared to 4th for NH), but at the expense of having the 2nd highest amount of taxes paid per capita. While NH manages almost the same level of government services while having the 3rd lowest amount of taxes paid per capita.
        In other words, NH state government provides the most government services per tax dollar collected, while VT provides some of the least amount of services per tax dollar.

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