The Pain Index: 10 states placing the largest budget burden on residents

It's funny how government budget cuts trickle down to everyday people. I live in California, which ranks second on U.S. News & World Report's"pain index" of states that have suffered the biggest budget pains and have been forced to institute both tax increases and spending cuts. I can say firsthand that I see the effect of those cuts every day.

Our local pool is closed some days due to city budget cuts, the nearby city of Oakland is laying off more police officers a week after a major riot, and I'm not watering my backyard. That last one is more to save me money and the state some water in a drought. But spending cuts are the reason the road medians in my town aren't being kept up (that said, they look far better than my backyard). Look around, and you're likely to deal firsthand with federal and state budget cuts as they trickle down to your neighborhood.

U.S. News & World Report''s pain index takes a look at places like my hometown, where residents are spending more on taxes yet seeing less in services. It takes into account state tax increases and spending cuts in each state since 2009 and notes that over the past three years, states have cut their budgets by nearly $50 billion -- the biggest reversal of state spending since the Great Depression -- and raised taxes by another $30 billion or so. All of these measures have been taken despite the $250 billion in stimulus aid that the federal government doled out to the states in 2009.