City Fiscal Conditions 2017

The 2017 City Fiscal Conditions survey of city finance officers reveals the start of fiscal contraction in the municipal sector following several years of post-recession growth. Several major findings taken together signal a slowdown on the horizon, including waning confidence of city finance officers, slowing local revenue and spending trends and insufficient post-recession revenue recovery. 

Key Findings:

  • General Fund revenues are slowing. General Fund revenues grew by 2.61% in 2016, and revenues are projected to stagnate with just 0.9% growth in 2017
  • Property tax revenue growth is budgeted much lower than 2016. Finance officers have budgeted for 1.6% growth in property tax revenues in 2017, compared to 4.3% in 2016
  • Finance officers project a decline in sales and income tax revenues for 2017. Both sales and income tax revenues grew in 2016 (by 3.7% and 2.4%, respectively), but finance officers project a decline in 2017 (by 0.2% and 2.7%, respectively).
  • Confidence of municipal finance officers has waned. Although the majority of finance officers (69%) are confident in the fiscal position of their cities, widespread optimism hit its peak in 2015.

 

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