Wow, was yesterday a tough day for me financially. Yes ladies and gentlemen, I joined the ranks of the "real world" from a taxation standpoint in 2008, and the outcome was rough. All the wounds are self-inflicted, all are easily overcome, but my oh my, it sure is different out here.
You see, in 2007, I was active duty military. During that time, I was a New Jersey resident, and so fell under "non-resident" rules that assigned to me no state income tax liability. Furthermore, about 20% of my total compensation was "non-taxable" allowances for housing, etc., so my federal tax was lower than it might have been for a comparable civilian salary.
But I retired in 2008. I was on active duty January-March, then began drawing retirement on 1 April. Additionally, I started a new, full-time job in early September. Along the way, I established a new residency in the People's Democratic State of Maryland, mostly as a way of demonstrating my commitment and earnestness to The Kitten. This would prove to be an expensive decision.
So when I sat down to do my taxes yesterday, I had three primary sources of income for 2008, each of which had withholding calculated at differing levels. I knew when I did my taxes this year I would owe money, both federal and state. I knew I would have to re-do W-4's to account for my new economic position...but my God, what a new world of taxation I've entered....
Most egregious of all? This state not only has a state income tax...but it also has county income taxes! COUNTY INCOME TAXES. In terms of state plus county taxes, it is 26% more expensive for me to be a Maryland resident than it is to be a Virginia resident. Are the roads better here in Talbot County, Maryland? Nope. Seems to me most of the extra money goes to pay bureaucrats to natter about trying to enact new and exciting ways of limiting property owners' rights simply because their property abuts a tributary to the Chesapeake Bay.
Yes....I did this to myself. I could have once and for all, become a Virginia resident when I retired from the Navy and not been gobsmacked like this. And I should have been much more curious about the way to fill out the W-4's to account for my new situation. But man oh man, if ANYONE harbored ANY doubts about my commitment to the Republican Party and Conservative ideas about taxation, put those doubts away. The Man is in my pocket, but good this time.