Normally I try not to get too political, in fact, Dad29 even commended me for it.
"...but they've never sunk so low as to get into politics."
But, after reading this post from the Dadmeister, and this post from the Catholic Caveman, I just had to sink that low and put my two cents in on this.
Rhode Island, in terms of land area, may be the smallest state, but...
Rhode Island has the HIGHEST state cigarette tax in the country (source), and one of only five states with a smoke tax of $2 or more per pack. Yes, of the $5-6 you pay for a pack of smokes, $2.46 per pack is state tax, and to boot, you still have to pay the 7% sales tax. So now, you are double taxed. I may no longer smoke, but I still feel the tax is horrendous.
Rhode Island has the HIGHEST state gasoline tax in the country, somewhere along the line of 31.x cents a gallon. It kinda surprises me that Connecticut's gas price is about 20 cents a gallon higher than Rhode Island.
At 7%, Rhode Island may not have the highest sales tax in the nation (only California is higher as of 1/1/06 - source), but we are the highest in New England (Maine and Connecticut are at 6%, Massachusetts and Vermont are at 5%, and New Hampshire has NO sales tax).
Reading enough classifieds lead me to conclude that the house in Rhode Island that is valued at $250K for tax purposes (and sold for $350K just to make some money) can be BOUGHT easily by the average joe consumer in other states like Missouri and Maine for $120K or less. A typical property tax rate in a city or town in Rhode Island is about $25 per thousand at 100% valuation. A typical annual tax bill for a normal down-to-earth house on a normal down-to-earth tract of land is upwards of three grand.
We complain about "Taxachusetts", but not only is Massachusetts' sales tax 2% cheaper than Rhode Island, but Massachusetts is having a sales tax holiday this weekend. In other words, this weekend, any purchase up to $2500 is TAX FREE in Massachusetts. The idea of a sales tax holiday was brought up in Rhode Island. What do our greedy politicians do? Shoot the idea down, of course!
You want to talk about tax corruption, look no further than our little pathetic state!