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Dealing with deficits: how New England States are managing the fiscal crisis
Following the economic boom of the late 1990s, the current recessionary period has caused revenues to decline and demand for government services to rise. Now, government executives and lawmakers, faced with persistent budget deficits, are struggling with difficult decisions: "What cuts should we make?" "Could we, should we, raise taxes?" "How deeply do we dip into quickly diminishing reserves?"...
Preparing for the storm: rainy day funds in New England
Rainy day funds have played an important role in alleviating the current state fiscal crisis. This article examines the benefits of these funds, the various ways in which they can be structured, and the differences in the structure and use of these funds in New England.
Securitizing tobacco settlements: the basics, the benefits, the risks
In this time of fiscal hardship for American states, governors and legislators across the country are searching for ways to make up for revenue shortfalls. Partly because of the severity of the revenue crisis, innovative and unconventional means of raising cash have begun to surface. One of these approaches, the topic of this article, is the securitization of tobacco settlement revenues.
Year-to-date revenues for the first four months of FY2003 were above their FY2002 level in most New England states. Hit hard by dramatically diminished tax receipts and/or increased spending pressures, all six states closed FY2002 with deficits that had to be eliminated by end-of-the-year fiscal measures. The improved revenue collections for the first four months of FY2003 were welcome. General revenues were up in Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont. Sales tax receipts, driven in large part by car purchases induced by manufacturers' offers of zero percent financing, ...
New England states are facing their worst fiscal crises in at least a decade. General revenues, especially those from the personal income tax, fell sharply in every New England state except New Hampshire in FY2002. All six states closed the fiscal year with deficits. Although preliminary reports suggest that FY2003 revenue collections in some states may be up from last year, deficits are still expected throughout the region. In response, all six states are cutting expenditures, drawing down reserve accounts, and/or raising taxes and fees.