State and Local Governments: Knowledge of Past Recessions Can Inform Future Federal Fiscal Assistance

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A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The most recent recession, which started in December 2007, is generally believed to be the worst economic downturn the country has experienced since the Great Depression. In response to this recession, Congress passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act), which provided state and local governments with about $282 billion in fiscal assistance. The Recovery Act requires GAO to evaluate how national economic downturns have affected states since 1974. In this report, GAO (1) analyzes how state and local government budgets are affected ... continued below

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United States. Government Accountability Office. March 31, 2011.

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Description

A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The most recent recession, which started in December 2007, is generally believed to be the worst economic downturn the country has experienced since the Great Depression. In response to this recession, Congress passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act), which provided state and local governments with about $282 billion in fiscal assistance. The Recovery Act requires GAO to evaluate how national economic downturns have affected states since 1974. In this report, GAO (1) analyzes how state and local government budgets are affected during national recessions and (2) identifies strategies to provide fiscal assistance to state and local governments and indicators policymakers could use to time and target such assistance. This report is being released in conjunction with a companion report on Medicaid and economic downturns to respond to a related statutory requirement in the Recovery Act. GAO analyzed economic data and states' general fund budget data; reviewed past federal fiscal assistance and related evaluations; and interviewed analysts at key associations and think tanks. GAO shared relevant findings with policy research organizations and associations representing state and local officials, who generally agreed with our conclusions. We incorporated technical comments from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. GAO identifies strategies for Congress to consider but does not make recommendations in this report."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • March 31, 2011

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  • June 12, 2014, 7:50 p.m.

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United States. Government Accountability Office. State and Local Governments: Knowledge of Past Recessions Can Inform Future Federal Fiscal Assistance, report, March 31, 2011; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc302012/: accessed June 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.