Why Taxes Should Be Adjusted for Geographic Cost of Living

By Biggs, Shannon | The Christian Science Monitor, November 19, 2010 | Go to article overview

Why Taxes Should Be Adjusted for Geographic Cost of Living


Biggs, Shannon, The Christian Science Monitor


Families in high-cost areas bear a heavier tax burden compared to those in lower-cost areas at the same standard of living.

Our national discussion regarding income tax brackets has so far failed to address one of the major inequities of America's tax system. Dual-income households living in high-cost areas shoulder a tax burden disproportionate to those at their same standard of living in the rest of the country. And, not surprisingly, Manhattan workers carry the heaviest load.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the 2010 average weekly wage in Manhattan was $2,404, or just over $125,000 a year. The top-heavy financial sector skewed these numbers, as did the 22 percent living in poverty. However, Manhattan wages are still higher than the national average across all supersectors.

Of course, Manhattan salaries are high for a reason: They must meet the basic costs of living there. A 2009 Center for an Urban Future study compared the costs of living in Manhattan with other areas around the country and concluded, "Income levels that would enable a very comfortable lifestyle in other locales barely suffice to provide the basics in New York City."

Lower and middle class hit hard

These geographic and urban variations hit the Manhattan lower and middle class wage earners hard. The same study revealed that in 2009 a family attempting to live on around $26,000 a year in Atlanta would have to make $60,000 to meet their basic needs in Manhattan.

Consequently, a struggling Man-hat-tan family with a yearly salary of $60,000, but a standard of living uncomfortably close to the federal poverty line, is taxed at a higher rate than a family with that same standard of living in Atlanta (making $26,000 a year).

The higher costs in Manhattan quickly bump the dual-income families who can least afford it into higher tax brackets.

This disparity is exacerbated by state and local tax burdens. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Why Taxes Should Be Adjusted for Geographic Cost of Living
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.