American Recovery & Reinvestment Act

While fiscal concerns usually top the list of important issues for states—even in good economic times—over the next few years, the dialogue among state policymakers will almost exclusively be on the topic of money: budgets, federal assistance, taxes, spending, borrowing and, ultimately, surviving.

Policymakers across the country are facing one of the most challenging sessions in decades, due in large part to the economic woes caused by the Great Recession. From health care reform to the end of funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, here are some of the top issues facing legislators this year according to the policy staff at The Council of State Governments.

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that The Council of State Governments urges that the United States Congress extend the moratorium in place under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 on the payment and accrual of interest on state loans from the Federal Unemployment Account.

Unemployment rates remain high and people are unemployed for longer, exhausting state unemployment trust funds quickly. More states are borrowing from the federal government to cover costs, which could have an impact on future fiscal stability.

As legislatures and governors finalized state budgets earlier this year, 24 states made the bet that Congress would extend enhanced Medicaid match rates from ARRA and included that assumption in their budgets. In August 2010, Congress passed legislation including additional Medicaid assistance through enhanced FMAP rates through the end of FY 2011 - or June 2011 - but provided less aid to states than many had anticipated.

CSG, along with NAST, NACO, NASACTNLC and USCM, has signed a letter calling for the Build America Bonds to be extended  Please read the letter below:

 

 

Council of State Governments
National Association of...

As the U.S. moves toward a national broadband map, several states are undertaking mapping projects thanks to grants from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. A national map will help states determine where broadband Internet actually exists and where it doesn’t, helping to expand access to areas that currently lack it.

Ezra Klein of the Washington Post asks this question:  "Did the stimulus a) work; b) fail; c) end up locked in an unexpected battle with the massive anti-stimulus that's ripped through the states?"

Unemployment rates remain high and people are unemployed for longer, exhausting state unemployment trust funds quickly.  More states are borrowing from the federal government to cover costs, which could have an impact on future fiscal stability.

For those in the industry of government accountability, the term “unprecedented change in 2009” is an understatement. With the enactment of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, government financial management professionals embarked on a monumental undertaking: using existing limited resources to quickly develop a new, efficient, Web-based system of reporting and accounting for federal grant funds. Everyone recognized the enormity of the task; no one, however, could have foreseen the extraordinary levels of intergovernmental cooperation that would emerge.

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