State Budgets

The Williams Report

A look at fiscal headlines from statehouses nationwide

State Budgets

National: Weighing cigarette tax increases
As the article rightly notes, “the use of cigarette taxes to plug budget gaps is bad policy.”

Connecticut: New projection shows state budget in deficit
Legislators must now confront a $78 million shortfall.

Illinois: State poll suggests most residents not affected by budget impasse
Life goes on.

New Jersey: Atlantic City fails to heed budget request as rift grows
The city now faces the prospect of a state takeover.

Virginia: Governor announces state budget cuts, says more may come
The cost-cutting measures are designed to mend a $1.5 billion budget shortfall.


National: Unaccountable and Unaffordable
U.S. states are now facing a $5.6 trillion pension funding hole, according to a new report from State Budget Solutions (SBS), a project of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) Center for State Fiscal Reform. Unfunded liabilities have increased roughly $900 billion since the last SBS estimate of $4.7 trillion in 2014.

National: More pain ahead for states’ pension plans
Moody’s predicts unfunded pension liabilities will rise 40 percent over the next two years.

National: Will looming state and local government pension crisis bankrupt the U.S.?
Spot-on op-ed from Investor’s Business Daily leans heavily on State Budget Solutions numbers.

National: Will pensions and OPEBs break state and local budgets?
Yes, they will — unless real action is taken forthwith.

Alaska: State moves to sell pension bonds despite S&P warning
Rather than issuing more debt, Alaska should embrace real budgeting reform.

California: At what point is California a lost cause?
Steven Greenhut finds reason for cautious hope.

New Jersey: State pension shortfall amounts to $26,000 for every resident, group claims
The Garden State has the nation’s fourth-worst public pension funding ratio, according to State Budget Solutions’ latest figures.

In Depth: State Budgets

Smart budgeting is vital to a state’s financial health. The ALEC State Budget Reform Toolkit offers more than 20 policy ideas for addressing today’s shortfalls in a forthright manner, without resorting to budget gimmicks or damaging tax increases. One way to stabilize budgets over time is to embrace…

+ State Budgets In Depth