Florida TaxWatch: Sunday is Taxpayer Independence Day for Floridians

Florida TaxWatch announced Sunday is Taxpayer Independence Day in Florida, marking the point of the year where taxpayers start “finally earning money for themselves and not for the tax collector.”

“Taxpayer Independence Day, calculated by Florida TaxWatch, accepts that every dollar earned since January 1 goes to pay federal, state, and local obligation,” the group noted on Thursday as it showcased a new report on the subject. “This year, it will take the average Florida family 103 out of 365 days – or almost three and a half months – to satisfy its tax obligations. Looking at it another way, it takes two hours and 15 minutes of every eight-hour workday to earn enough to pay your taxes. Historically, taxpayer independence comes sooner in Florida than for the average U.S. taxpayer, and this year is no exception. The Tax Foundation estimates that the national Tax Freedom Day for 2019 is April 16, two days later than Florida’s.”

Florida TaxWatch President and CEO Dominic Calabro weighed in on Thursday. While he praised Florida’s economy, Calabro noted that, in 2018, Taxpayer Independence Day was on April 13.

“Florida’s economy is steadily and modestly growing, and that is boosting state and local tax collections,” said Calabro. “Even with the federal tax cuts of 2017 and the Florida Legislature’s tax-cutting policy, tax collections paid by Floridians grew faster than their income in 2019 so Taxpayer Independence Day is coming one day later this year.”

“Federal tax burden continues to have the largest impact on Floridians, as federal taxes comprise 68.7 percent of Floridians’ federal, state, and local tax burden. For the average Floridian, the state tax burden is 16.5 percent and local tax burden is 14.7 percent of their total tax bill. Florida will contribute $301 billion in taxes to federal, state, and local governments in 2019, $15 billion more than last year,” Florida TaxWatch noted.

“Taxes are Florida families’ single biggest expense, more than food, housing and clothing combined,” said Florida TaxWatch Vice President of Research Kurt Wenner. “It’s important that they are kept informed about the changing size of their tax bill, so they can decide if they are getting the government they pay for.”

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