Washington’s lifelines for state budgets may be fraying

Released: 
February 05, 2013

Since the recession, revenue-starved states have grown more reliant on federal help, but those funds may now be in danger.

Since the recession, states coping with sagging tax revenue have become increasingly reliant on federal funds. Back in 2008, federal dollars accounted for 26.3 percent of total state budgets. By 2011, it was up to 34.1 percent.

The stimulus package was behind much of the increase, but that federal largesse is ending. State funding is further threatened by possible federal “fiscal cliff” cuts.

Some states rely more than others on government spending. The economies of West Virginia, Alaska, Wyoming and Mississippi are most reliant on government money. Nevada, Texas, Illinois and Connecticut are least reliant.

Check out our infographic for more on how states depend on federal funds. See “What Do Others Say?” for more views, then add to the discussion below. Are you worried about your state taking care of itself?