(The Center Square) – Virginia taxpayers are getting a significant return on their investment, according to an analysis released Tuesday by the personal finance website WalletHub.
The analysis ranked Virginia fourth on its list of states and taxpayers' ROI for the taxes they pay in those states. WalletHub sought to find out whether people in high-tax states receive superior government services compared to low-tax states or whether low-tax states are more efficient in the services provided.
"In short, where do taxpayers get the most and least bang for their buck?" the study asked.
To answer the question and determine a taxpayer's ROI, WalletHub compared the quality of government services received by residents with the total state and local taxes they pay.
WalletHub analyzed each state in five government-service categories: education, health, safety, economy, and infrastructure and pollution. The categories were broken down into 30 relevant metrics, and each metric was graded on a 100-point scale, with a score of 100 representing the best quality of government service.
Each state's weighted average across the 30 metrics determined its overall government services score. Taxpayer ROI rankings were determined by comparing each state’s overall government services score to its total taxes paid per capita rank.
Virginia ranked 20th in total taxes paid per capita and fourth in overall government services.
Within government services, Virginia ranked highest in economy (fourth), followed by safety (seventh), infrastructure and pollution (seventh), education (10th) and health (26th).