After accounts are settled with Uncle Sam, the typical Arizonan will have sent $11,264 to the federal government, about 20 percent below the national average of $14,051, according to an economic policy think tank.
The National Priorities Project’s breakdown of state spending on federal taxes also said that more than half the budget will go to health and defense spending. By comparison, spending on education and veterans benefits will amount to 6 and 3 percent, respectively.
That came as a surprise to Noni Nez, an archeologist with the National Forest Service in Arizona as she was getting off a flight at Reagan National Airport on Monday.
“I think education and health should be our number one priority,” Nez said. “I’m surprised that education is so low, but I’m glad we’re spending a lot of money on healthcare.”
In fact, the National Priorities Project estimates that Arizona residents sent an average of $2,679.09 for Medicaid and Medicare in their 2016 taxes. The bill for spending on military personnel was $559.90 per person in the state, while $72.79 went to nuclear weapons.
The report said that in every tax dollar, 29.1 cents went to health spending, 23.4 cents went to defense and 13.2 cents was consumed by interest on the federal debt. Another 7.5 cents went to unemployment and labor expenses, 4.5 cents were for food and farms, 4.2 cents went to government, 3.2 cents went to transportation and 2.1 was for housing.
Veterans got 6 cents, schools got 2.8 cents and less than two pennies each went to energy and the environment, international affairs, and science.
Arizona was 28th among states…
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