Volcker Alliance Partners Present Public Finance Research at ABFM Conference

Panel at ABFM

Research partners from the Volcker Alliance’s State and Local Budgeting in the COVID Era issue paper series delivered presentations as a panel at the annual gathering of the Association of Budgeting and Financial Management, a chapter of the American Society for Public Administration. William Glasgall, Volcker Alliance senior director, public finance, chaired the panel that included Beverly S. Bunch and Patricia Burns (University of Illinois Springfield); Thad Calabrese (New York University); Phil Dean (Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute at the University of Utah), and David Guo (Wichita State University). This meeting was part of the Alliance’s continued efforts to bring together partners in research with practitioners to promote fiscal sustainability and empower public servants to better serve their constituencies.

Bunch presented on the methodology of the issue paper she authored, The $195 Billion Challenge– the amount allocated to state budgets as part of the $350 billion in State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds (SLFRF) that Congress provided as part of the American Rescue Plan Act. The presentation touched on the sequel to the paper, which will look at recent expenditures by states of SLFRF dollars and the extent to which one-time cash infusions are being used to support continuing programs that may need new funding once the federal assistance runs out in 2026.

Calabrese and Dean previewed their forthcoming papers on New York City’s dependence on federal and state revenues and lessons learned regarding state budget forecasting during the COVID-19 pandemic, respectively. Both authors provided an overview of their research approach, findings, and engaged with attendees on further refinements to the works.

Guo presented on his continuing research employing the Alliance’s Truth and Integrity in State Budget Data Lab, evaluating impacts of various state policies, such as balanced budget requirements, tax and expenditure limits, and debt limits, on the grade each state was awarded by the Alliance in its Truth and Integrity in State Budgeting reports.

Scott Pattison, Deputy Executive Director of the Multistate Tax Commission, provided feedback for the authors as the panel’s discussant and framed the panel’s work within the context of states’ record-breaking own-source and federal revenues.

The Alliance-organized panel and the efforts of its university partners are helping to shape the direction of public finance research as well as connecting government practitioners with cutting-edge insights and policy recommendations.

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