AARP Budget and the Economy Principles

Promote transparency—proper accountability and oversight of government spending requires a transparent budget process negotiated by elected officials.

Provide adequate resources—revenues should be adequate to fund and sustain governmental spending and other public needs.

Ensure sustainability—government officials should consider the medium- and long-term effects of budget policies. Deficits should be kept at a manageable level to preserve economic growth and essential programs that serve vulnerable populations. Additional revenue may be necessary to achieve long-term fiscal balance.

Fairly distribute resources and burdens—the benefits of economic prosperity and public programs should be shared equitably, including across income groups and generations. The burdens of providing such programs should also be shared equitably.

Adopt prudent practices—budget processes should use reasonable assumptions, analyze impacts in a straightforward manner, and allow enough flexibility to respond to changing circumstances.