Missouri has the Eleventh Lowest Tax Burden in the Nation for 2015

Aug 22, 2017

In Fiscal Year (FY) 2015, Missouri collected $21.9 billion in state and local taxes. While this is an impressive sum of money, it tells us little about whether or not the average Missouri taxpayer can afford this level of taxation.



Click here to view tax burden data by state, type of tax, and for years 1950 to 2015


As shown in Chart 1, Missouri’s state and local tax burden (tax collections divided by private sector personal income) was the eleventh lowest in the nation for FY 2015 at 12.6 percent—or -13 percent below the national average of 14.4 percent.


Chart 1 Missouri State and Local Tax Burden FY 2015.jpg


#MO #taxburden in FY 2015 was the 11th lowest in the nation at 12.6%— -13% below US avg @keypolicydata #MOleg #MOgov (click to tweet)


As shown in Chart 2, Missouri’s tax burden has increased over time by 84 percent to 12.6 percent in FY 2015 from 6.8 percent in FY 1950.


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


#Missouri #taxburden has increased 84% between FY 1950 to 2015 to 12.6% from 6.8% @keypolicydata #MOleg #MOgov (click to tweet)


Click here to view tax burden data by state, type of tax, and for years 1950 to 2015


As shown in Chart 3, Missouri’s 12.6 percent tax burden is greater than these combined industries: retail trade (6.5 percent), and construction (5.9 percent).


Chart 3 Missouri State and Local Tax Burden vs. Major Industry FY 2015.JPG


#Missouri #taxburden > combined industries: retail and construction @keypolicydata #MOleg #MOgov (click to tweet)


Missouri’s lower than average state and local tax burden is driven by a low corporate income tax burden (0.3 percent, 10th lowest), property tax burden (3.4 percent, 12th lowest), and all other taxes burden (2.1 percent, 9th lowest).



Additionally, Missouri taxpayers have the benefit of the Hancock Amendment which was added to the Missouri Constitution in 1980. The amendment caps revenue to 5.6959 percent of personal income. Any revenue exceeding the cap must be refunded to the taxpayers. Here is one of my earliest studies I wrote and deals with the Hancock Amendment that I did while working for the Tax Foundation (pdf) and here is a more technical review of the Hancock Amendment from the Institute of Public Policy at the University of Missouri (pdf).


Of course, the tax burdens for local government can vary just as much as they do among the 50 states. As such, we have also calculated the local government tax burden for every county in Missouri—this includes every taxing jurisdiction within the geographic county borders whether it is a city, a special district, or county government itself.


The Missouri counties/cities with the highest local government tax burden include:


  • Wright County, MO (13.6 percent)
  • Macon County, MO (10.3 percent)
  • Douglas County, MO (10.2 percent)
  • Jackson County, MO (9.9 percent)
  • Sullivan County, MO (9.7 percent)
  • Reynolds County, MO (8.9 percent)
  • Cole County, MO (8.4 percent)
  • Miller County, MO (8.3 percent)
  • Johnson County, MO (8.0 percent)
  • Putnam County, MO (7.8 percent)


The Missouri counties/cities with the lowest local government tax burden include:


  • Osage County, MO (2.2 percent)
  • Ralls County, MO (2.4 percent)
  • Wayne County, MO (2.6 percent)
  • Newton County, MO (2.8 percent)
  • Scott County, MO (2.8 percent)
  • Shelby County, MO (3.4 percent)
  • Ripley County, MO (3.4 percent)
  • Christian County, MO (3.4 percent)
  • Bollinger County, MO (3.5 percent)
  • Carroll County, MO (3.5 percent)


Chart 4 Missouri Local Tax Burden by County FY 2015.JPG


Click here to view tax burden data by state, type of tax, and for years 1950 to 2015



Finally, don’t forget to watch our exclusive time-lapse video of state and local tax burdens over the last 65 years! See if your state has been above or below the national average?



Category: Tax Burdens

J. Scott Moody

Scott has nearly 20 years of experience as a public policy economist. He is the author, co-author and editor of over 180 studies and books. His professional experience also includes positions at the American Conservative Union Foundation, Granite Institute, Federalism In Action, Maine Heritage Policy Center, Tax Foundation, and Heritage Foundation.

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