The primary sources of government revenue are income, sales, and property taxes.
There is an increasing interest in taxes on energy consumption.
Two government budget practices that can have significant implications for lower levels of government are block grants and unfunded mandates.
Excise taxes are sales taxes on individual commodities, services, or transactions such as motor fuel, cigarettes, or home sales.
States charge fees for the use of certain services. These fees are based on the principle that people should pay according to the benefits they receive.
Taxes can be complicated. And they can pose compliance issues. Sometimes noncompliance is unintentional, but other times it is intentional.
The mainstay of local taxation is the tax on real estate, known as the property tax. It is used to fund an array of state and local services, most notably public schools.
Federal and state governments have tried to change budget rules to control government spending. Budget rules have also been used to impose fiscal discipline.
Grandparents and other relatives play an important caregiving role in family well-being. Support from extended family is especially vital in families with low incomes.
Policymakers can take action to stimulate the economy.