Stephen C. Fehr

Stephen C. Fehr

  • Senior Officer
  • State Fiscal Health and Economic Growth,
  • The Pew Charitable Trusts


Stephen Fehr is a senior officer with Pew's state and local fiscal health initiative, which researches state budget issues and provides policy guidance to help policymakers manage finances through the turns in the economy.

As a lead researcher on the project, Fehr oversees a wide-ranging portfolio that includes state intervention efforts in distressed local governments, state revenue systems, rainy day funds, borrowing, public pensions, and state tax policy. He is a frequent speaker to professional and academic associations and contributes to Stateline, the daily news service of The Pew Charitable Trusts.

Fehr, who joined Pew in 2008, draws from 33 years’ experience as a reporter and editor at the Washington Post and the Kansas City Star. During those years, he covered every level of government, from city councils and school boards to state legislatures, governors, Congress, and the White House.

Fehr holds a bachelor of journalism degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia. 

Recent Work

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  • State and Local Correctional Health Care Spending

    Effectively administering health care programs is a critical element of sound fiscal management for state and local governments. As health care and corrections have emerged in recent years as fiscal pressure points, so too has the intersection of these two spheres—health care for inmates. The manner in which states and localities manage prison and jail health care services affects taxpayers’... Read More

  • Insights From Fiscal 50's Key Measures of State Fiscal Health

    States’ fiscal conditions have improved since the Great Recession ended six years ago, but their recovery is incomplete. About half of states still collect less tax revenue than at their recession-era peaks, after adjusting for inflation, and most have yet to rebuild their financial cushions to prerecession levels. Twenty-three states’ employment rates still trail 2007 levels. Read More

  • Fiscal 50: State Trends and Analysis

    Fiscal 50: State Trends and Analysis, an interactive resource from The Pew Charitable Trusts, allows you to sort and analyze data on key fiscal, economic, and demographic trends in the 50 states and understand their impact on states’ fiscal health. Read More