Public Employment: The Next Shoe to Drop?

Largely because of fiscal assistance provided by the federal government, job losses in state government have been much lower than those in the private sector. As that federal aid comes to an end, the prospect for public sector job losses increases dramatically, unless a) federal aid is extended or b) there is a sudden and swift improvement in state tax collections. At the same time, a recent study questions whether state and local government employees have it so much better than their private sector counterparts.

How Federal Aid Could Help

Proposals for extending federal fiscal assistance to states have been plentiful, but the prospect for actually enacting such an extension has gone from a sure thing to anyone’s bet.