Five Fiscal Futures

In this series, Stateline takes a long-term view of the budget choices the nation's five biggest states are making and avoiding.

May 16, 2011 By David Harrison, Staff Writer

In Texas, School Growth Clashes With a Shrinking Budget

AUSTIN, Texas - As Texas schools enroll 500 new students a day, state leaders are lopping billions of dollars from the education budget. The courts may get the final say on an issue that could force Texas to reexamine its entire fiscal system. More

May 17, 2011 By John Gramlich, Staff Writer

California's Worst Enemy: Its Own Political System

SACRAMENTO, California - The recession has hit America's biggest state hard, but partisan stalemate and conflicting voter mandates have hit it even harder. More

May 18, 2011 By Josh Goodman, Staff Writer

In New York, a 'Big First Step' Toward Fiscal Sustainability

Governor Andrew Cuomo not only got New York's legislature to pass its budget on time but also changed spending assumptions in ways that nudge the budget closer to long-term structural balance. More

May 19, 2011 By Daniel C. Vock , Staff Writer

Illinois Faces Daunting Fiscal Challenge

The nation’s fifth-largest state has to face up to the budgetary mess it created. Its leaders finally seem willing to get started. They can’t take forever. More

May 20, 2011 By Christine Vestal , Staff Writer

Florida Hopes Its Future Looks Like the Past

Florida is banking on an expected influx of retiring baby boomers to buy up the state's glut of empty housing and get an old formula for the state's fiscal health working again. More

May 23, 2011 By Josh Goodman, Staff Writer

Do States Control Their Fiscal Destiny? Not as Much as They May Think.

State leaders love to make promises about healing a sick economy. Often, though, economic success depends on factors far beyond their influence. More