Dylan Scott is a GOVERNING staff writer.E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
This week, the White House has updated its Federal Tax Reciept calculator to reflect current spending levels in time for the April tax season.
President Barack Obama proposed such a calculator that would allow Americans to observe in very specific ways how their federal tax dollars are spent; the effort launched last year.
The tool breaks down citizens' contributions along major spending areas (national defense, health care, education and job training, etc.), and those categories can be broken down futher (Medicaid, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, college student financial aid, etc.) for specific dollar amounts based on an individual's payments.
According to the calculator's parameters, national defense (24.9 percent of one's total income tax payment), health care (23.7 percent) and welfare programs (19.1 percent) take up the bulk of each person's federal tax contributions. Notably, payment on the net interest on the nation's debt is the fourth largest figure at 8.1 percent.
Calculate your own percentages at the White House's website.
A few states have also adopted a similar transparency device. California's income tax receipt, available here, functions almost identically to the federal government's.