We’re not among the ten worst, but we’re not in the top half. Wisconsin is still ranked 38 of the fifty states, making it a high-tax state according to the Tax Foundation.
The good news is we’ve moved up one notch, from last year’s ranking of 39. The biggest jump in improvement came from the state’s property taxes. We improved eight places to 26th in the country.
However, while we have eliminated the state property tax, local property taxes are going up 1.8 percent so next year’s score for property taxes may take a tumble.
Wisconsin is penalized especially harsh for personal income taxes (43). “Of the other forty-three states, Tennessee, New Hampshire, Illinois, Indiana, and Utah have the best scores, avoiding many problems with the definition of taxable income that plague other states,” the Tax Foundation said in its report. “Meanwhile, states where the tax base is found to cause an unnecessary drag on economic activity are New Jersey, Ohio, California, Wisconsin, Georgia, Maryland, Minnesota, Virginia, and Minnesota.”
In calculating Wisconsin’s score, the Tax Foundation criticized Wisconsin’s progressive tax structure and the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT). Until the AMT was eliminated in the latest state budget, Wisconsin was just one of six states that still had the tax.