Five State Fiscal Debates to Watch in 2024

Key public finance issues that are likely to capture policymakers’ attention this year

Navigate to:

Five State Fiscal Debates to Watch in 2024
A close-up of four microphones, two each being held by two hands. The mics are directed toward a person, visible only from the chest down to the thighs, standing near a podium, wearing a blue shirt, grey slacks, and a burgundy tie. Two other microphones are also visible at the left of the image.
Getty Images

As legislative sessions begin in statehouses throughout the country, lawmakers face a host of issues that will affect state budgets. This five-part series previews some of the most pressing fiscal questions state leaders are likely to debate in 2024.

Day One: The Transition Away From Pandemic Aid

Federal pandemic aid funding is winding down, creating a fiscal cliff for schools, public transit agencies, and child care providers. State legislators, many already grappling with shortfalls, will need to help fill the gaps.

Day Two: Substantial Budget Shortfalls

After two years of double-digit tax revenue growth, states curbed their expectations for fiscal year 2024—and some are still coming up short. At least seven states are reporting deficits in the current or upcoming fiscal year as budget conditions tighten.

Day Three: Environmental, Social, and Governance Investing

Socially and environmentally conscious investing strategies continue to gain in popularity among investors and financial institutions, but they also increasingly have become a target of state legislation.

Day Four: Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence has emerged as one of the hottest topics for state legislators in 2024. But the technology holds promise but also poses risks to state governments that could affect spending.

Day Five: Natural Disaster Risks

With more frequent and costly natural disasters driving up home insurance rates, especially in Gulf Coast and Western states, lawmakers have taken a range of steps to protect property and state budgets.

Composite image of modern city network communication concept

Learn the Basics of Broadband from Our Limited Series

Sign up for our four-week email course on Broadband Basics

Quick View

How does broadband internet reach our homes, phones, and tablets? What kind of infrastructure connects us all together? What are the major barriers to broadband access for American communities?

What Is Antibiotic Resistance—and How Can We Fight It?

Sign up for our four-week email series The Race Against Resistance.

Quick View

Antibiotic-resistant bacteria, also known as “superbugs,” are a major threat to modern medicine. But how does resistance work, and what can we do to slow the spread? Read personal stories, expert accounts, and more for the answers to those questions in our four-week email series: Slowing Superbugs.