taxes-tax-day-spending / Institute for Policy Studies

Tax Day is April 17, 2018. Americans will file their tax returns for all income received in 2017. Want to know what your taxes pay for, and who pays what?

Check out our Tax Day 2018 resources:

Check out our Tax Day notes and sources.

Some Key Findings:

The receipts are in and we found that corporations contributed to just 9 percent of federal revenue through income taxes, while individuals contributed 48 percent. Our analysis shows individuals and states just how much of that money is going to the military, the environment, education, and healthcare.

On the Pentagon & Military

  • The average taxpayer contributed $240 to Lockheed Martin through the Department of Defense. That’s more than twice as much as the $112 taxpayers contributed to child nutrition programs including school breakfast and lunch.
  • The average taxpayer paid $190 for all diplomacy and foreign aid, compared to eighteen times as much – $4,328 – for the Pentagon and military.
  • The average taxpayer put in 29 working days in 2017 to pay Pentagon contractors. That’s eleven cents out of every tax dollar going to the Pentagon’s corporate contractors.
  • While nearly 24 cents of every tax dollar supports the Pentagon and military, just five cents goes to our troops in the form of pay and other benefits (excluding health care).

On Energy & the Environment

  • The average taxpayer contributed just $39 for the Environmental Protection Agency, which has been threatened with a 35% (or $2.9 billion) budget cut under President Trump’s proposed 2019 budget.

On Education

  • The average taxpayer contributed just $580 to education, including K-12 education, higher education, and vocational training.

On Income Support

  • Taxpayers contributed $426 for income support programs for veterans.
  • The average taxpayer contributed just $80 in 2017 to Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, better known as welfare.

On Health Care

  • Taxpayers contributed an average of $3,533 for Medicaid and Medicare, providing insurance for 1 in 3 Americans.

On Government

  • The average American paid $79 for the Internal Revenue Service, the equivalent of a 0.5% service charge for income tax collection.
Lindsay Koshgarian directs the National Priorities Project at the Institute for Policy Studies.

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