Why Is It Important?
Price of government is the percentage of personal income that goes to pay local taxes and fees. Personal income tends to increase at a faster rate than taxes in a thriving economy; therefore, the price of government can be an indicator of the health of the economy and quality of life for residents. Also, the price of government aids our understanding of the influences of taxes and can help identify opportunities for economic development that may boost the county’s economy.
What Is Measured?
The price of government enables us to compare Polk County to several surrounding counties in the following areas:
- The total amount of revenues collected by the county
- Personal income
- Some combination of the areas above
How Is It Measured?
We get the personal income data from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. For consistency, we get the tax proceeds information from the Florida Department of Financial services.
From the aggregates, the price of government can be presented as:
Price of Government = Sum of Taxes, Fees, and Charges for Service / Total Personal Income
This measure is updated annually during the first quarter of the year, as data is available.
How Is Polk Performing?
Polk County's residents pay 2.72 percent of their income in taxes which is the second lowest among Hardee, Osceola, Pasco, Pinellas, Hillsborough, and Orange counties. On the indicator above, Polk County’s rate is indicated in the green range as it is in the lower third among surrounding counties. Yellow represents the middle third and red represents the upper third of surrounding counties.