Two government budget practices that can have significant implications for lower levels of government are block grants and unfunded mandates.
Federal and state governments have tried to change budget rules to control government spending. Budget rules have also been used to impose fiscal discipline.
Policymakers can take action to stimulate the economy.
Social Security benefits are paid through a self-financing system.
Social Security program administration has multiple functions. It processes applications and payments and operates field offices around the country.
Some proposals to address Social Security solvency would adjust the calculation of initial benefits. Others adjust benefit growth over time.
Older women experience higher poverty rates than older men. They also, as a rule, receive lower Social Security benefits.
From time to time, Social Security’s long-term solvency challenges have been used to justify basic structural changes.
One indicator of smart fiscal practices is maintaining balance between spending and revenues. Occasionally deficits may be necessary.
Under the U.S. Constitution, people are entitled to compensation when a government takes their property. This is known as a taking.