Between 2007 and 2012, total expenditures for state and local governments increased by 18.2 percent, from $2.7 trillion to $3.2 trillion, while total revenue declined 1.1 percent over the same five-year period, from $3.1 trillion to $3.0 trillion, according to new U.S. Census Bureau data from the 2012 Census of Governments released today.
Two major contributors to the decline in total revenues were employee retirement revenue, which includes earnings on investments and contributions, (dropping 67.7 percent, from $533.3 billion to $172.0 billion) and interest earnings (falling 44.6 percent, from $91.9 billion to $50.9 billion).
“State and local government revenues continue to be impacted by capital market fluctuations, especially employee retirement revenues,” said Kevin Deardorff, chief of the Census Bureau’s Economy-Wide Statistics Division.
The findings are from the 2012 Census of Governments: Finance — Surveys of State and Local Government Finances, which shows revenues, expenditures, debt, and cash and security holdings by level and type of government. Level of government includes state, local, and state and local combined. Type of government includes state, county, city, township, special district and school district.
Outstanding state and local government debt grew faster than both revenues and expenditures during this time frame, climbing 22.2 percent from $2.4 trillion in 2007 to $2.9 trillion in 2012. Cash and security holdings declined 1.7 percent, from $5.4 trillion in 2007 to $5.3 trillion in 2012.