Minnesota, long a place of heavy tax burdens, is the national leader in new tax cuts, according to an analysis of budgets by the National Conference of State Legislatures.
The study of tax cuts that 42 states will implement over the next two years shows that Minnesotans will receive the highest total of cuts and rebates -- $2.7 billion -- as well as the highest per-capita relief, at $575.
Some legislatures have not yet approved budgets. But the nearest competitor so far is Connecticut, which is offering tax relief totaling $216 per capita.
While Republicans, Democrats and Reform Party Gov. Jesse Ventura fight over who should get credit for the tax relief, some in Minnesota's political mix say it is too little, too late. "It's a little like a 500-pound man bragging about losing 25 pounds," said Darrell McKigney, president of the League of Minnesota Taxpayers, a conservative interest group. "We're still grossly overtaxed."
California, the most populous state, is returning about a half-billion dollars in tax cuts -- about the same as Texas, the report said.
It noted that only seven states raised taxes: Arkansas, Illinois, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Carolina, South Dakota and West Virginia.