Tax and Budget

For decades, the consumption of services has been making up a higher and higher percentage of  state economic activity. Yet many states' sales tax bases fail to capture the service-based economy.

Indiana tax relief measure will be on ballot; Wisconsin and Iowa have proposals of their own

State Medicaid provider rates were casualties of the recession in almost all states in 2009-2010. And despite the economic downturn a number of states expanded eligibility, increased benefits, and improved application processes.

State eNews Issue #40 | February 18, 2010
The road to fiscal recovery for states will be bumpy, say top executives of the nation’s leading state service organizations, but they believe the slog will bring transformational changes to state governments.
State eNews Issue #39 | February 3, 2010


President Barack Obama’s State of the Union speech, with its strong jobs and middle-class families themes, seemed to echo the famous Clinton campaign war room posting, “It’s the economy, stupid.”

States are using a variety of tactics to get people back to work through retraining programs, most of which are on community college campuses.  Big enrollment increases, couple with state budget cuts, is leaving many colleges in a fiscal crisis.

The cost of substance abuse and addiction is staggering— hitting state budgets hard.  Alternative methods of managing substance abuse can pay off for states.  States’ fiscal crises have simultaneously provided opportunities to develop new strategies for substance abuse programs and forced funding decreases for successful programs.

State eNews Issue #38 | January 20, 2010
 

In the midst of California’s budget troubles, its only remaining A-level credit rating from a major firm was just downgraded to an A-minus, according to The Los Angeles Times.

State eNews Issue #37 | January 6, 2010

States are starting to see an influx of investment in broadband from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

The Obama administration on Dec. 17 announced $183 million in the first round of stimulus funds would go to 18 broadband projects in 17 states. Of the initial awards, $121.6 million went to middle mile projects, those connections to communities lacking sufficient broadband access...

This edition of Firstline Midwest is Part 2 of a two-part series on state responses in the Midwest to the budget crisis. Part 1 focuses on the revenue side, particularly proposals in 2009 to close budget gaps through tax increases or gambling expansions. Part 2 examines short- and long-term strategies to control spending.

Prior to the last two fiscal years, state budgets were being passed and balanced with fairly robust increases in state spending: on average, about 6 percent annually between 1979 and 2008....

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