Budget Planning

Heading Into 2021, State and Local Budget Gloom Lingers

Revenues are better than initially expected in some states. But they’re still down in many places as the cost of the pandemic response adds up.

End Nears for Fed’s Municipal Lending Program

The initiative only attracted two borrowers, but experts say it helped to stabilize the municipal bond market following Covid-driven turmoil earlier this year.

Timing of Covid-19 Vaccine for Health Care Workers Depends on Where They Live

STATE AND LOCAL ROUNDUP | Kansas and Missouri plan to rely on the honor system to comply with priority distribution of coronavirus vaccines ... Employees in one Louisiana city will receive a one-time lump-sum hazard payment ... Indiana lawmakers hope to shield businesses from Covid-19 lawsuits.

New Bill Proposes Stopping Unemployment Agencies That Make Mistakes From Demanding Money Back

State unemployment agencies have been demanding recipients repay thousands of dollars, even if the agency made the mistake and the money’s already been spent. After ProPublica investigated the practice, legislators are trying to end it.

Possibility of State Medicaid Cuts Looms in 2021

When states reduce spending on the program it also means they lose federal matching funds. Meanwhile, a new report highlights the long-term importance of the health coverage for kids.

McConnell: State and Local Aid Should Be Left Out of Near-Term Virus Relief Deal

The Senate majority leader recommended passing a package with programs that Democrats and Republicans can agree on, while the Trump administration offered its own proposal.

A City Looks to Incorporate More, and More Diverse, Input Into Its Budget Process

Philadelphia this week announced a participatory budgeting program for a $1 million pot of money, as well as other initiatives geared toward reducing racial inequities with city spending.

With the Election Over, Will Covid Stimulus Actually Move Forward?

Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Congress needs to approve a coronavirus aid package before the end of the year.

Jobs Recovery Slows for States and Remains Uneven

An analysis by Fitch Ratings found that job growth had slowed for most states as Covid-19 cases and hospitalizations surge across the country.

States Are Getting Close to Spending Down Federal Covid Aid

Two surveys of state and local officials find that states and local governments are using up the money, but that restrictions on how it can be spent have been problematic.

K-12 Support Staff Hit by School Workforce Cuts

But employment losses in state and local education are still coming into focus.

The Draining of State Rainy Day Funds

COMMENTARY | At least 10 states have already tapped their emergency reserves, even as budget experts expect the worst revenue declines caused by the coronavirus pandemic to come in the months and years ahead.

Some States See Better Than Expected Revenues, But Budget Outlook Is Still Tough

Evaporating federal aid and uncertainty over what will happen next with the virus and the economic recovery are casting a long shadow over states’ finances.

Another Hurricane Barrels Toward Gulf Coast

STATE AND LOCAL ROUNDUP | Hospital capacity concerns in Nebraska … ‘Ticking bomb’ septic tanks in Florida … Oklahoma jail workers charged after making inmates listen to ‘Baby Shark’.

Treasury Secretary Suggests White House is Open To Deal on New State and Local Aid

Steven Mnuchin's remarks on Wednesday come as talks are restarting over the possibility of a coronavirus assistance package ahead of the upcoming election.

New Virus Relief Proposal Includes Less Aid for States and Localities

But there’s a chance it could help to revive stalled talks. House Democrats released their updated plan for a coronavirus assistance package on Monday.

Local Officials Say They Need More Time to Spend CARES Act Money, as Future Aid Remains in Doubt

State and local governments are up against a Dec. 30 deadline to use the coronavirus relief money, a timeframe that many local officials say should be extended.

Pandemic’s Uncertainties Hang Heavy Over Small City's Budget

Augusta, Maine has already resorted to layoffs and furloughs to slow spending. Looking ahead, there are still questions about what will happen with badly needed state aid and other revenues.

Parks Prove Popular During Pandemic—But Budget Cuts Loom

A June survey by the National Park and Recreation Association found that a majority of Americans consider parks an essential government service, but decreased revenue from the coronavirus pandemic is likely to threaten parks funding in the future.