Governing Without Money: Long Term Trends in State Finances
Norton Francis is a Senior Research Associate with the Urban Institute State and Local Finance Initiative and is an expert in state and local tax policy. He was the Director of Revenue Estimation for the Office of the Chief Financial Officer in the District of Columbia from 2009 to 2012 and the Chief Economist for the New Mexico Legislative Finance Committee from 2005 to 2009. He has written about and presented on revenue estimation and tax policy.
A disconnect exists between the long term trends of revenue and expenditures that is causing fiscal crises for states. Revenue growth for both sales and income taxes, the two major state sources of revenue, has been decelerating for over a decade. Expenditures, particularly for health care and pensions, have been accelerating. Mr. Francis will discuss how these trends, which existed before the recession, may be exacerbated by responses from state lawmakers to the recession’s devastating effect on state finances.