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States in fiscal distress

Author: Robert P Inman; National Bureau of Economic Research.
Publisher: Cambridge, Mass. : National Bureau of Economic Research, ©2010.
Series: Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research), no. 16086.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
The 2007-2010 recession has imposed significant fiscal hardships on state and local governments. The result has been state deficits and the need to increase state taxes, cut spending, and withdraw funds from state rainy day accounts. The primary cause of state budget "gaps" has been the rise in the level of state unemployment. There is no evidence that gaps are related to state political institutions, the state's  Read more...
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Additional Physical Format: Print version:
Inman, Robert P.
States in fiscal distress.
Cambridge, Mass. : National Bureau of Economic Research, ©2010
(DLC) 2010655880
Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Robert P Inman; National Bureau of Economic Research.
OCLC Number: 642865644
Description: 1 online resource (26, [4], R3 pages).
Series Title: Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research), no. 16086.
Responsibility: Robert P. Inman.

Abstract:

The 2007-2010 recession has imposed significant fiscal hardships on state and local governments. The result has been state deficits and the need to increase state taxes, cut spending, and withdraw funds from state rainy day accounts. The primary cause of state budget "gaps" has been the rise in the level of state unemployment. There is no evidence that gaps are related to state political institutions, the state's prior receipt of federal funding, or possibly favored access to key congressional budget committees. The federal government has responded to these gaps with the passage of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 intended to aid states in fiscal distress and to provide an economic stimulus. As insurance for fiscal distress, ARRA covers at most $.23 of each additional dollar of a state's budget gap; there is a large per capita payment that goes to all states, independent of the level of state deficits. As targeted assistance for stimulating local economies, ARRA funding is uncorrelated with state unemployment rates. ARRA funding appears to be decided by congressional politics, given the desire to pass a major spending and tax relief package as quickly as possible. States are important "agents" for federal macro-policy, but agents with their own needs and objectives.

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