The federal-state relationship is in the spotlight because of enormous fiscal challenges facing all levels of government. Tight budgets and a weak recovery in the wake of the Great Recession are leading to discussions about appropriate amounts of public spending and how costs should be allocated among local, state, and national government. Federal and state policy makers require solid data and analysis to engage in a meaningful debate and truly understand how their tax and spending policies affect other levels of government.
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All levels of government play a role in building and maintaining our nation’s roads, bridges, and transit through a partnership in which the financial contributions are substantial and deeply intertwined. Yet over the past 10 years, the Highway Trust Fund, which pays the vast majority of the federal contribution to our transportation infrastructure, hasn’t been able to keep pace with... Read More
Last month, Congress and President Barack Obama avoided a federal shutdown by agreeing on a temporary measure to fund the government through Dec. 11. Yet it seems increasingly unlikely that a federal budget agreement will be reached without an early December budget showdown. Once again, uncertainty reigns about how much the federal government will spend even after its fiscal year has started. Read More