New Mexico owes us a ‘thank you’

When it comes to dollars flowing to the federal government, and federal dollars coming back to the state, Minnesota is not doing very well.

A study published this week in The Economist shows that over the last 20 years, Minnesota ranks second only to Delaware in the gap between the federal taxes the state’s taxpayers pay, and the amount of money coming back to the state in federal services. According to the Economist, Minnesotans paid $1,016.9 billion in taxes from 1990 to 2009. We received $503.8 billion. That’s a deficit of $513.2 billion, or 199 percent of our gross domestic product.

New Mexico, by contrast, paid $115.7 billion in taxes and received $316.6 billion in federal funds, or -261 percent of the state’s gross domestic product.

Our neighbors to the west, North Dakota and South Dakota, also receive more than they pay. North Dakota receives about $48.7 billion more than it pays, and South Dakota receives $45.3 billion more than it pays

Only Pennsylvania broke even in the rankings, with a little over $1,602 billion in both taxes and revenue.

We realize there are inequities in population and services needed. The Dakotas have far fewer people, and more highways to maintain, for instance.

It would be nice, however, for those who receive to send a thank you note to those of us who pay.

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