Lots of People in the South Have $0 Tax Liability
So those nonpayers you heard about throughout tax season? Proportionately, lots of them are in the south (don’t ask us why they used red/blue):
Purely by the numbers, California has the most with over six million taxpayers whose credits and deductions reduce their tax liability to zero. However, of the ten states that have the highest proportion of nonpayers, nine of them are in the south, including Texas and Florida, who have 4.2 and 3.4 million tax filers that had no tax liability respectively.
The total number of nonpayers in the south is approximately 13 million or 25% of the total 51 million, according tot he IRS’ data. So whatever the expression is that includes the combination of God loving the South and hating taxes, suddenly has more credence to it.
States Vary Widely in Number of Tax Filers with No Income Tax Liability [Tax Foundation]
Accounting News Roundup: Record Number of ‘Nonpayers’ of Income Tax in ’08; IRS Getting Used to Threats?; Donations for Chile Bill Passes House | 03.11.10
• Record Numbers of People Paying No Income Tax; Over 50 Million “Nonpayers” Include Families Making over $50,000 [Tax Foundation via TaxProf Blog]
For all the bellyaching Americans do about taxes, a large portion of them have managed to turn “Tax Day into a payday.” What the hell does that mean? It means that a growing number of people are considered to be “nonpayers” or people that get back every dollar withheld on their paycheck.
Sounds great, right? It’s my money, F the government, etc, etc. Well, the Tax Foundation is a little concerned because as the federal budget continues to grow, the income tax system becomes a less effective method of financing expenditures:
“[R]ecently released IRS data for the 2008 tax year show that a record 51.6 million filers had no income tax obligation. That means more than 36 percent of all Americans who filed a tax return for 2008 were nonpayers, raising serious doubts about the ability of the income tax system to continue funding the federal government’s ballooning expenditures.”
The Foundation concludes that if the trend of credits continues, the more people will get used to the idea that their refund from the Feds is annual windfall rather than an even greater inefficient government. “As the number of refundable tax credits continues to grow, more and more tax filers are seeing the IRS as a source of income, not something to which taxes are paid.”
• Eye Opener: Threats against IRS workers continue [Federal Eye/WaPo]
Despite so many people being “nonpayers” people still hate on the IRS, as we’ve covered. And actually, the IRS is okay with that. It’s expected:
“It would be a little naïve to think that we don’t get some threats over the course of doing business,” said IRS Communications Director Terry Lemons.
Perhaps it would be naïve but there seems to be shit going down every week. When does the ‘over the course of doing business’ become “day-to-day challenges that we deal with”?
• House Passes Chile Earthquake Donations Bill [Web CPA]
Yesterday, the House approved the extension of the deadline for donations made to victims of the earthquake in Chile, to considerable less fanfare than the Haiti bill from back in January. Presumably, Congress is under the impression that voters aren’t that concerned about what goes on in the southern hemisphere, thus the need for grandstanding on this issue isn’t needed.
The bill, sponsored by new Ways & Means Chair Sander Levin (D-MI) and Dave Camp (R-MI), would allow donations made through April 15, 2010 to be included on your 2009 tax return.