Posts tagged ‘Total Revenue’

All You Need to Know About State Fiscal Responsibility

Via Reason

The baseline takes state government budgets and grows them by population growth and inflation.  In other words, baseline spending in 2007 would be the same real level per capita as in 2002.  The Total Revenue line is the actual revenue collections by state governments.  Actual collections grew about 4 times faster than population and inflation in this period.  And states still did not balance their budgets or pay down debt in this period.  Nick Gillespie writes

Had the states kept their outlays constant while allowing for inflation and population growth, they would have been sitting on $2 trillion in reserves when the recession hit. Instead, they were broke heading into the recession and are in even worse position now.

Revenue is IRRELEVANT to fixing state budget problems.  No matter how much money is collected, governments will spend all the money and more.  The only solution I can see is imposition of statutory, perhaps Constitutional, spending caps in each state.