Where local government money comes from
Yesterday I wrote about local governments spending $100 billion a year on police, but I realize that I didn’t provide much context for how that fits into overall spending. Here are a few datasets from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2011 Annual Surveys of State and Local Government Finances to provide a framework.
Local governments had revenues of $1.67 trillion in 2011, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Here is how federal and state governments contributed to local government revenue flows:
Local governments generated $905 billion of their own revenue:
Local governments generated $578 billion of tax revenues:
Local governments generated $267 billion in fees and charges:
Local governments earned $134 billion in utility revenues:
Local governments also had $73 billion in insurance trust revenues and public employees contributed $73 billion in pension payments.
Local government spending on current operations:
Top eight local government spending categories:
Bottom eight local government spending categories: