States on Track for Default

Louisiana’s unfunded liability of $24 billion cause for “serious concerns”

NEW ORLEANS, La. – On account of immense fiscal pressure, some states are “simply not going to be able to honor their promises,” asserts John Hood, author of “The States in Crisis,” a report from the latest issue of National Affairs.

Jindal’s Prison Privatization Proposal Must be Properly Structured, But Can Generate Savings, Spokesman Says

Corrections System the Second-Fastest Growing Part of State Budgets

By Kevin Mooney

While some high profile state officials have expressed skepticism toward the idea of selling off state correctional facilities, a spokesman for Gov. Bobby Jindal says the proposal can be structured to alleviate costs and “right size” state government.

States Lack of Strict Budgetary Requirements Increases Budget Shortfalls

Stronger balanced budget amendments safeguard against shortfalls
By Phillip Suderman

As states complete their budget forecasts, 40 states are already reporting more than $80 billion in budget gaps for the next two fiscal years, according to the National Association of State Budget Officers. In a joint report released last week by NASBO and the National Governors Association nearly half of the states are already projecting shortfalls for the upcoming fiscal year. A further 11 states are still trying to close the deficits of this year’s budget.

Medicaid Expenses Drain State Coffers

Mercatus study identifies expansion of eligibility

By Phillip Suderman

The most contested and popular issues during this year’s election races focused on government spending and debt. And, although many newly elected members of Congress will soon arrive in Washington to work on the national fiscal picture, the finances they leave behind in their various states aren’t in top shape. In 2010, 48 states grappled with budget gaps that totaled nearly $200 billion. The chief culprit for many states’ financial woes, most recently is Medicaid.

Federal Spending Per Household: A Decade of Accelerated Growth

Increase continued even while average household size declined

Veronique de Rugy’s latest examination of national data highlights the upward and accelerating trend of federal spending on a per household basis – with a blip in the past two years. The Mercatus Center scholar, of George Mason University, adjusted spending figures to remove the impact of measured inflation, and found that in the last decade alone per household spending increased by 38 percent, from $21,891 to $30,174.