Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Where does your tax money go?

Now that you've paid your 2010 taxes, are you wondering how your tax money is spent? Louis Garcia and Andrew Johnson, computer engineers from Minneapolis, wondered the same. They created an easy way to view how the federal budget is spent in relation to your tax dollars. Called What We Pay For, the database assumes that tax dollars are pooled into one lump sump to spend on the programs and operations of the federal government. To be sure their data was accurate, the engineers randomly sampled over a hundred records at different levels. They also provide a feedback section for reporting any issues. For more information, check their About page.

In today's world of mashups Anil Kandangath got permission to use the data from What We Pay For to create an interactive chart for quick viewing. His Where Did My Tax Dollars Go? lets you choose the following categories to see proportionally how taxes are spent: single, married (filing jointly), married (filing separately), qualified widow(er), and head of household. Kandangath also has a tab for suggestions to improve the site.