The Fiscal Link - July 2013

Your On-Line Connection to the Latest Fiscal Information in the States .

NCSL & National Association of Legislative Fiscal Offices (NALFO) Updates

  • Register today for the 2013 Fiscal Analysts Seminar! The Seminar will take place in Annapolis, Oct. 7-9. Get more information and register online here. View the online agenda here.
  • NCSL 2013 Legislative Summit. The nation’s premier meeting of legislators and staff takes place this summer in Atlanta , Aug. 12-15. Legislators and legislative staff from all 50 states come together at NCSL’s Legislative Summit to work on America’s toughest issues. You will meet colleagues from across the country, share ideas, talk with experts, learn from nationally renowned speakers, discover policy solutions and develop a states’ agenda for NCSL to take to Washington, D.C. NALFO sessions at the summit will include: a federal budget update, legislative oversight of federal funds, a discussion on fiscal notes, and studying retirement and outcomes-based budgeting.
  • Understanding New Public Pension Funding Guidelines and Calculations. This brief provides guidance on the new GASB reporting requirements.
  • The Great Evaluator. This article from State Legislatures Magazine features the work of Steve Aos, director of the Washington State Institute for Public Policy.

State News & Reports

  • Colorado. The Legislative Council published an Issue Brief examining Colorado’s payments from the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement. 
  • Iowa. The Legislative Services Agency released their annual “Fiscal Facts,” book for FY 2013. The book looks at overall state revenues and expenditures and examines pertinent policy topics during the year.
  • Pennsylvania. The Independent Fiscal Office published a report examining potential changes to the state’s film production incentive tax credits including the removal of the annual cap.
  • Wisconsin. The Legislative Fiscal Bureau published their required annual “Earmark Transparency Report,” highlighting earmarked appropriations in the General Assembly’s 2013-15 biennial budget.

Federal News & Reports

  • The Federal Reserve Bank of New York published a report examining the unintended consequences of school accountability policies. The report uses data from Florida and draws comparisons to programs in New York.
  • The Congressional Budget Office published a report highlighting the rising demand for long-term care services as the elderly population in the U.S. grows.
  • The New England Public Policy Center at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston published a discussion paper examining economic distress and resurgence in central U.S. cities.
  • The Government Accountability Office released a report, which found that most federal managers lack recent program evaluations. The report also includes strategies for effective program evaluations.

Other Items of Interest

  • The Pew Charitable Trusts recently released reports on the “The State Role in Local Government Financial Distress,” which compares the way different state governments have reacted to local fiscal crisis, and a  50-state study measuring states’ use of cost-benefit analysis titled, States’ Use of Cost-benefit Analysis: Improving Results for Taxpayers.
  • The Brookings Institution published a report evaluating homebuyer tax incentives. The report found that incentives provided during the recession provided a modest boost to housing demand, but some effects were reversed after the expiration of the credits.
  • The National Association of State Student Grant & Aid Programs published its annual report on state sponsored student aid. According to the report, states awarded $11.1 billion in financial aid during the 2011-2012 academic year.
  • The Southern Regional Education Board released a “Fact Book on Higher Education,” which compiles comparative data on the 50 states.

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