Out of Control Policy Blog

"Broke States and Bailouts"

Last week I wrote about how states' fiscal woes are far from over. Specifically, tax revenue is rebounding from a diminished base, bailouts have expired and government spending on entitlement programs and elsewhere is on pace to increase in the next several years.

Mercatus Center at George Mason University recently hosted a panel event entitled "Broke States and Bailouts" discussing the aforementioned issues facing states today. Panel members included: Eileen Norcross, senior research fellow at Mercatus; Steven Malanga, senior fellow at Manhattan Institute; and Mike Jerman, legislative director for Congressman Jason Chaffetz (R-UT).

The panel discussed the following questions:

  • What institutions are in place that increase state spending and debts?
  • What are the consequences of a bailout by the federal government for states?
  • What are potential solutions states can implement in 2011?

Malanga framed the discussion saying policymakers have a greater role to play than lining up government spending and revenue. He continued, "We are in a new fiscal reality, and we need to reorient state and local government, and that means structural and basic reform."

The full hour-long discussion is available here. For more information, visit Reason Foundation's government reform research archive here.

Harris Kenny is Policy Analyst


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