Study highlights striking differences in condition of state retirement systems.

Iowa is offering an early-retirement package to state employees as part of its budget-balancing plan for fiscal year 2011.

The return of income-tax season has states making what has now become a standard pitch to taxpayers: File your returns electronically.

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.

Community colleges are experiencing record student enrollment while states are cutting their budgets due to large deficits. Enrollment caps are limiting people's access to higher education.

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.

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