New report: New Mexico’s tax burden is 5th-highest in nation

With Democrats on the hunt for higher taxes at both the State and local levels here in New Mexico, it is worth asking just how heavy the State’s tax burden is relative to other States. Conveniently, Key Policy Data which looks at state by state data on taxes and other economic indicators, just published a new series of charts which show New Mexico to have both a heavy and growing state and local tax burden.

As shown in Chart 1, when New Mexico’s state and local tax burden (tax collections divided by private sector personal income) is used as the measuring stick, New Mexico’s tax burden was the fifth highest in the nation for FY 2015 at 18.8 percent—or 31 percent above the national average of 14.4 percent.

Far from being “gutted,” as shown in Chart 2, New Mexico’s tax burden has increased over time by 65 percent to 18.8 percent in FY 2015 from 11.4 percent in FY 1950.

Chart 2 New Mexico Tax Burden by Type of Tax FY 1950 to 2015.JPG

Gov. Susana Martinez will have yet another opportunity to veto tax hikes in the wake of the 2017 special session. Unfortunately, New Mexico’s future could see political leadership that gladly accepts rather than rejects tax increases.

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4 Replies to “New report: New Mexico’s tax burden is 5th-highest in nation”

  1. Your organization picks and chooses the papers and data you like.

    As a New Mexican, I would encourage the state to increase gasoline taxes like Utah,Oklahoma and Tennessee and other Republican led states have in recent years as they face the reality we simply need increased revenue and cannot cut ourselves to prosperity.

    The complaints from taxpayers and Rio Grande Foundation ignore the fact while we will pay more for cable and $700 for iPhones we shouldn’t dare consider increasing revenue, yet it has not been adjusted for over 20 years. Still government is expected to provide the same level of services without an increase in revenue.

    Who would expect the value of a dollar and road tax of from 1995 and to cover expenses in 2017?

    1. The gas tax hikes being proposed would not allocate funding for roads. It’s just more money for the government slush fund. However, I’d consider a gas tax increase if it were dedicated to roads and if all other avenues for transportation improvement had been addressed. Repeal of NM’s costly Davis-Bacon law is one essential step that must happen before we’d support a gas tax hike. Also, millions of dollars annually are being dumped into a train (the RailRunner) which vastly outweighs any benefit it provides in terms of transportation. That needs to stop before road users are asked to pay more taxes.

    2. As a former resident of Calif, which is a democrat state by the way, a gas tax of 50 cents has been on the books for years and has been “raided to pay for items other than transportation related items , for which it was originally earmarked . Increasing taxes is an easy way for politicians to raise revenue instead of trimming excesses such as the Rail Runner, which is always in the red. We should have expanded existing bus service instead of building that money pit. A gas tax would hurt lower income families who need to travel daily to work.

  2. My thanks to Governor Susana Martinez for vetoing the tax increases proposed by the termites who chew away at our wallets in the State Legislature.

    Let the developers publish the Key Policy Data charts above in their national realtor publications that try to lure retiree home buyers into New Mexico.

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