Politicians start telling the truth
In response to Moody’s placing the state’s Aaa credit rating on review, Tennessee’s News Channel 5 filed this story and video, two very good examples of a state government reacting to a possible downgrade. In the video, municipal bond expert and Metro Councilmember Emily Evans says:
There is no getting away from the fact that we have engaged in debt practices that have been irresponsible and we are going to pay a price and we need to pony up and pay it.
Our massive debt load is a large issue overhanging America and a big bump in the road to economic recovery. Facing the facts and telling the truth are necessary to start the process of getting fiscal houses in order.
Further: Bond Buyer: Debt Fight Sparking Muni Fears
State tax-collection data looks good
From the Rockefeller Institute’s latest report:
Total state tax collections as well as collections from two major sources — taxes on sales and personal income — showed growth for the fifth consecutive quarter, following five straight quarters of decline. Overall state tax revenues in the first quarter of 2011 increased by 9.3 percent from the same quarter of the previous year.
Also from the Tax Foundation: Monday Map: State and Local Sales Tax Rates, 2011
Minnesota gets it done finally
It’s not perfect but it’s finished. Reuters reports:
The Minnesota legislature approved on Wednesday in a marathon special session all the budget bills needed to end a state government shutdown that has lasted nearly three weeks.