Find me on:
This form does not yet contain any fields.
    Powered by Squarespace
    Subscribe

    Entries in Donald Trump (17)

    Friday
    May262017

    The Week in Public Finance: The Trump Budget Edition

    BY  MAY 26, 2017
    Someone holds a copy of President Trump's fiscal 2018 budget at the U.S. Government Publishing Office's plant. (AP/Carolyn Kaster)

    Hysteria Over Cuts

    President Trump unveiled his budget this week, and while it merely expanded upon an outline he submitted in March, it was still met with near-immediate outcry from state and local government groups.

    In the budget, the president proposes diverting more than $54 billion from various federal agencies to boost defense spending. He also cuts $260 billion over 10 years in expected discretionary spending, a move that critics say drastically reduces federal funding and grants for vital state and local programs that create jobs, raise wages and protect low-income Americans. In total, Trump’s proposal would cut federal spending by more than $3.6 trillion over the next decade.

    U.S. Conference of Mayors CEO Tom Cochran issued a statement saying that mayors across the country were "deeply troubled by President Trump’s brazen attack on the very people he promised to protect."

    The Takeaway: Trump’s budget included so many drastic changes that even Republicans in Congress were uncomfortable with parts of it. It’s unlikely to pass as is, but it still has state and local governments worried.

    Click to read more ...

    Friday
    Apr282017

    The Week in Public Finance: Trump's Tax Plan, the Tampon Tax and Calling Out the SEC

    BY  APRIL 28, 2017

    Trump Sort of Unveils His Tax Plan

    President Trump unveiled his tax reform plan this week, and the massive cuts it proposes have left many wondering how the government would pay for the plan.

    Much of the single-page, bullet-pointed statement, which The New York Times called “less a plan than a wish list,” contained promises Trump made on the campaign trail: a much lower corporate tax rate, the elimination of the U.S. tax on foreign profits, a reduction in the number of individual income tax brackets from seven to three, a lower tax rate, and the scrapping of most itemized deductions, including one that lets taxpayers deduct their state and local taxes from their declared federal income.

    Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Wednesday that economic growth, combined with eliminating deductions, would pay for the cuts. Meanwhile, a Tax Foundation analysis of some of these key ideas shows that the plan would ultimately result in more tax revenue for state governments.

    Click to read more ...

    Tuesday
    Apr252017

    The Emerging Strategy for Capitalizing on Women's Unprecedented Interest in Politics

    Women have mobilized in large numbers to run for office before. Women-in-politics advocates want to make sure it's sustainable this time.
    BY  APRIL 25, 2017

    Jean Sinzdak could see right away that this year would be different for women in politics. For the first time in her 12 years of running a seminar for women interested in public office, she had to start a waitlist.

    Registrations for the “Ready to Run” program, run by Rutgers University’s Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP), began pouring in after the presidential election. Whether it was Hillary Clinton’s loss or Donald Trump’s victory despite multiple sexual harassment accusations and a video that shows him brag about grabbing women, the election results have been a mobilizing force.

    “We had a lot of women who said, ‘I never considered running myself, but this year I woke up or I realized I had to do it,’” says Sinzdak, the associate director for CAWP.

    Click to read more ...

    Friday
    Apr212017

    The Week in Public Finance: Ballmer's Data Trove, Grading Pension Health and a New Muni Bond Threat

    BY  APRIL 21, 2017

    This Goes Way Beyond Open Data

    You might not peg former Microsoft CEO and current owner of the NBA’s Los Angeles Clippers as a government data geek. But Steven Ballmer stepped into that role in a grand scale this week when he unveiled his privately funded, years-long project to help citizens easily track how government spends their money.

    Called USAFacts, the website contains federal, state and local aggregated data on revenue and spending, as well as on debt, population, employment and pensions. Want to know about pension debt? Two quick searches reveal that unfunded liabilities in state and local retirement systems have more than quadrupled since 2000. At the same time, the median age in the country has increased by 2.5 years.

    As a businessman used to the corporate world, Ballmer wants to make government financial reports more readable. To that end, the site has introduced the first government "10-K report" -- the private sector's version of an annual financial report. It aggregates data from all U.S. governments and gives progress reports on government programs, provides financial balance sheets and gives data on key economic indicators.

    Click to read more ...

    Friday
    Apr072017

    This Infrastructure Program Ended Up Costing Governments Millions. Trump Might Bring It Back.

    States and localities are wary of the president's support for the Build America Bonds program.
    BY  APRIL 6, 2017

    A popular Obama-era infrastructure financing program may get revived this year as President Trump moves forward on his pledge to invest $1 trillion in infrastructure. But this time around, state and local governments might not be as excited about it.

    The program, Build America Bonds (BABs), was created in 2009 as one of many recession-era initiatives aimed at jump-starting the economy. Unlike tax-exempt municipal bonds, BABs are taxable, and, as a result, open up the municipal market to new investors, such as pension funds or those living abroad. But BABs are also more expensive for governments. So to defray the added cost, the federal government offered a direct subsidy of 35 percent of state and local governments' interest payments on BABs.

    But the program became a casualty of sequestration: cutbacks in federal subsidies promised under the program left state and local governments scrambling to fill the void. A recent estimate by the Institute of Government and Public Affairs at the University of Illinois found that so far Illinois and its localities have had to pay out a collective $70 million to offset the higher costs of BABs.

    Click to read more ...