California Makes the Bottom Five in Economic Sustainability

Sarah Arnett a PhD in Public Policy at the Georgia State University has developed a method for assessing the fiscal condition of states. Her evaluation of the 50 states is published in a Working Paper for the Mercatus Center at George Mason University.


Sarah Arnett’s Abstract:

State fiscal condition is multifaceted and difficult to measure. Using a method developed in previous research, I create the cash, budget, long-run, and service-level solvency indices using fiscal year 2012 data to measure the dimensions of fiscal condition. The five states with the highest-ranked overall fiscal condition are Alaska, South Dakota, North Dakota, Nebraska, and Wyoming. The five states with the lowest-ranked fiscal condition are New Jersey, Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, and California. The top five states all had a surplus in fiscal year 2012 as measured by an increase in net assets, but there are differences in their underlying strengths. I find that the states with the worst fiscal condition have had years of poor financial management across the different dimensions of fiscal condition. [Emphasis added]

The study and details are linked at the Mercatus Center navigation button above.

About Russ Steele

Freelance writer and climate change blogger. Russ spent twenty years in the Air Force as a navigator specializing in electronics warfare and digital systems. After his service he was employed for sixteen years as concept developer for TRW, an aerospace and automotive company, and then was CEO of a non-profit Internet provider for 18 months. Russ's articles have appeared in Comstock's Business, Capitol Journal, Trailer Life, Monitoring Times, and Idaho Magazine.
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