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Regional Cost-of-Living Adjustments in Tax-Transfer Schemes

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  • Louis Kaplow

Abstract

The federal income tax and major welfare programs do not take into account significant cost-of-living variations among regions. This article considers what adjustments might be appropriate in light of the distributive purposes of tax and welfare systems and concerns about the efficiency of the interregional allocation of resources. Price index problems, differences in amenities, and heterogeneity of individuals' locational preferences are considered.

Suggested Citation

  • Louis Kaplow, 1995. "Regional Cost-of-Living Adjustments in Tax-Transfer Schemes," NBER Working Papers 5008, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:5008
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Aaron, Henry J, 1976. "Inflation and the Income Tax," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 66(2), pages 193-199, May.
    2. Gyourko, Joseph & Tracy, Joseph, 1991. "The Structure of Local Public Finance and the Quality of Life," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(4), pages 774-806, August.
    3. Henderson, J. Vernon, 1982. "Evaluating consumer amenities and interregional welfare differences," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(1), pages 32-59, January.
    4. Mieszkowski, Peter & Zodrow, George R, 1989. "Taxation and the Tiebout Model: The Differential Effects of Head Taxes, Taxes on Land Rents, and Property Taxes," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 27(3), pages 1098-1146, September.
    5. Roback, Jennifer, 1982. "Wages, Rents, and the Quality of Life," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(6), pages 1257-1278, December.
    6. Roback, Jennifer, 1988. "Wages, Rents, and Amenities: Differences among Workers and Regions," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 26(1), pages 23-41, January.
    7. Martin David, 1975. "Measurement of the Cost of Living Including the Public Sector," NBER Chapters,in: Annals of Economic and Social Measurement, Volume 4, number 1, pages 133-152 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Gillingham, Robert & Greenlees, John S, 1987. "The Impact of Direct Taxes on the Cost of Living," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(4), pages 775-796, August.
    9. Gyourko, Joseph & Tracy, Joseph, 1989. "The Importance of Local Fiscal Conditions in Analyzing Local Labor Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(5), pages 1208-1231, October.
    10. Henderson, J. Vernon, 1987. "General equilibrium modeling of systems of cities," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics,in: E. S. Mills (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 23, pages 927-956 Elsevier.
    11. Rubinfeld, Daniel L., 1987. "The economics of the local public sector," Handbook of Public Economics,in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 11, pages 571-645 Elsevier.
    12. Richard Cebula, 1979. "Living costs, the Tiebout hypothesis, and welfare policy," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 34(1), pages 129-130, March.
    13. Blomquist, Glenn C & Berger, Mark C & Hoehn, John P, 1988. "New Estimates of Quality of Life in Urban Areas," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(1), pages 89-107, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Wouter Vermeulen & Jos Van Ommeren, 2009. "Compensation of Regional Unemployment in Housing Markets," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 76(301), pages 71-88, February.
    2. Esteller-Moré, Alejandro & Rizzo, Leonzio, 2011. "(Uncontrolled) Aggregate Shocks or Vertical Tax Interdependence? Evidence From Gasoline and Cigarettes," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 64(2), pages 353-379, June.
    3. Edward L. Glaeser & Joshua D. Gottlieb, 2009. "The Wealth of Cities: Agglomeration Economies and Spatial Equilibrium in the United States," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 47(4), pages 983-1028, December.
    4. Glaeser, E. L., 1998. "Should transfer payments be indexed to local price levels?," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 1-20, January.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H24 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies
    • H53 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Welfare Programs

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