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Times' series on spending
(June 2002)
· Part 1
· Part 2
· Part 3
· Part 4

Friday, December 13, 2002 - 12:00 a.m. Pacific

The taxes you pay: Businesses feel weight of taxes at every stage
Washington's tax system burdens businesses, especially smaller or less-profitable ones, more than just about any other state. Washington also has one of the highest rates of business startups in the nation. [Dec. 13, 2002]
  In Seattle: Dispute pits city and tech, biotech firms

Previously in the series »

Adding up your tax bill A Seattle Times special report (Nov. 17 2002)

How much do you really pay into state and local coffers?
Phil and Amy Crocker of Seattle have all the makings of a middle-class lifestyle. And a $482-a-month tax bill. The Seattle Times analyzed the Crockers' finances, and those of two other households, to learn how Washington's tax system hits people at the pocketbook level.

Where your money goes
Use our calculator to add up your monthly and annual state and local tax bill.
PhotoThe participants
In addition to the Crockers, right, Gary Porter and his family and UW student Johnny Grady Jr. participated in this project. Meet these typical taxpayers.
In a recent Seattle Times poll, nearly two-thirds of people called the state's tax system unfair, and 41 percent said taxes took "a lot more" of their income than 10 or 15 years ago. How true that is depends largely on how you look at the numbers. Here are answers to some basic tax questions.

Who pays most and least — and why
Sales taxes
Property taxes
Business tax
Looking ahead
  A look at inflation

Previously in the series

The taxes you pay: Lid on property taxes is tightening
Property values are still growing, but tax growth is now limited unless voters give the OK. Tax limits almost guarantee that property taxes will bear less and less relationship to property values as years go on. [Dec. 12, 2002]

After years of heavy lifting, sales tax is getting weaker
Washington's state and local governments rely on the sales tax for much of the heavy fiscal lifting — more so than in nearly any other state. [Dec. 11, 2002]
  Competition: Millions in tax lost as buyers cross borders

With or without income tax, money woes grip most states
An income tax is unlikely to solve Washington's persistent problem in matching spending with revenue — at least, not if the experience of other states is any guide. [Dec. 05, 2002]

Seattle Times series on government spending (June 2002)

Part 1: State budget jam at boiling point

Part 2: State spending grew at slower pace in 1990s

Part 3: Boom days now busting city's budget

Part 4: King County duties grow as tax base gets trimmed

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