fiscal conditions

fiscal conditions

Fiscal Survey of States, Spring 2015

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This report shows that state budgets are expected to continue on a path of stable, moderate growth, with 42 governors recommending spending increases for fiscal 2016. However, progress is slow, and structural issues and long-term spending pressures will require difficult budget choices for many states. States’ spending proposals continue to be cautious as they plan for limited revenue growth.

Why "Budget Gaps" Don't Always Show the Full Picture

Mind the Gap photo
June 9, 2015

Recently, several articles have indicated that a number of states are facing at least some level of “budget gap” or “shortfall” for either fiscal 2015 or fiscal 2016. One of the most important things to note about state budget shortfalls – or budget gaps – is that they are based on what a state expects to receive in revenue and what the state expects to need to spend. If the money coming in is not sufficient to cover the expected costs, there is a “shortfall”.

Positive April Surprises to Help Many States Meet Revenue Targets

May 12, 2015

Early indications are that most states experienced a positive “April surprise” this year, in contrast to last year. April surprises often occur in states after taxpayers pay both their federal and state taxes. Sometimes the surprise can be a positive one as states experience higher than projected tax windfalls. Other times the surprise can be negative as was the case for most states last year. The primary reason for the slowdown in 2014 was related to the federal “fiscal cliff”.

Fiscal Survey of States, Fall 2014

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This report shows that state fiscal conditions are moderately improving in fiscal 2015 as the economic recovery enters its sixth year. Consistent annual growth in the economy, while not as robust as many would like, is leading most states back to budget growth. States have replenished some spending for areas cut back during the recession, such as K-12 education and higher education. In addition to bolstering state spending, economic growth has produced higher revenue collections.