Maine Politics

From the Piscataqua to the St. John

Monday, January 24, 2005

The Way Life Should Be

The BDN this weekend had two very interesting pieces comparing the state of Maine and its tax level to other parts of the country. The first item was an article comparing Maine and our only U.S. neighbor. It examined the relative tax rates and the differences in political cultures in Maine and New Hampshire.

New Hampshire spent roughly $2 billion - when factoring in money from the state's educational trust fund - to pay for its state programs in 2003. Maine, by similar measures, spent $2.4 billion that year, according to a National Association of State Budget Officers State Expenditure Report.
The vast majority of Maine's general fund money came from its sales and personal income taxes. New Hampshire, having neither, relies more heavily - to its detriment, some say - on business and property taxes to fund major programs…
Like many, [UNH political scientist] Schuman laughs at the takeover attempt and jokes with his New Hampshire colleagues that he lives in Maine "because he wants some services for his tax dollars."

The second was an Op Ed written by a Maine native who has spent the last 32 years in Oklahoma. It’s worth reading in its entirety and can be found here.

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