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Pension Liability Stress

“Pension Liability Stress For State Governments”   Abstract This chapter explores the role that public pensions play in the growth of state government spending. Most states provide a defined-benefit style pensions, which are not adequately funded or managed by state

Re-base TEL, or Not

Ratchet-Down, Dynamic Scoring Effects of Spending Caps, and Anti-Ratchet Rule Effects John Merrifield and Barry Poulson   Abstract   The growth rule for a Tax Expenditure Limitation (TEL) can be a cap or a goal, which can apply, annually, to


State Governments and Privatization: Improving Infrastructure Through Incentives Austill Stuart, Reason Foundation   ABSTRACT As the “middle” actor in the United States’ federal system, state governments are tasked with a unique mix of roles where state-level institutions serve as both

TEL Cap Choices

“The Fiscal Significance of the TEL Cap Choices” John Merrifield and Barry Poulson Introduction Early economic analysis of tax and expenditure limits (TELs) assessed their effectiveness as state and local revenue and/or spending restraints. That perspective reflected the origin of

Term Limits

Fiscal Effects of Term Limits “Those who oppose term limits express fears of having government run by amateurs, rather than by people with long experience in politics. But this country was created by people who were not career politicians, but

Fiscal Squeeze

Government Growth, Institutional Erosion, and the Fiscal Squeeze: Nebraska as a Case Study  Michael Thomas and Diana Thomas Introduction This paper offers a case study of the state of Nebraska and of the institutional and ideological changes underpinning increasing budgets

State Debt Brakes

Using a Debt Brake to Solve Colorado’s Debt Crisis John Merrifield and Barry Poulson   Abstract In recent years debt in Colorado has increased at an unsustainable rate. In this study, a Swiss style ‘debt brake is simulated for the

Voting for Fiscal Responsibility

Give People a Vote That Counts, and They Will Vote for Fiscal Responsibility by Dwight R. Lee Affiliated Visiting Faculty Fellow Institute for the Study of Political Economy| Miller College of Business Ball State University     Abstract If the

Rainy Day Funds

Rainy Day Funds Gary A. Wagner and Erick M. Elder     Introduction Unlike the federal government, nearly every state has some type of balanced budget requirement1; despite the differences in the structure of these requirements across the states, the

State Fiscal Sustainability

Assessing State Fiscal Sustainability   Olivia Gonzalez November 21, 2020   Abstract States face an ongoing challenge to meet their financial obligations. Average state debt, especially unfunded pension benefits, has grown significantly over the past decade and many states face