March 18, 2011

How Tax and Expenditure Limitations Affect State Budgets

Key materials
Contact us
To speak with a scholar or learn more on this topic, visit our contact page.

In 1976, New Jersey became the first state in the Union to enact a tax or expenditure limitation (TEL). It was a statutory limit on state spending that forbade legislators from growing expenditures faster than state income growth.

Though legislators let it expire just six years later, the New Jersey statute kicked off a new experiment in constitutionally limited government. Many states have attempted to slow state and local government spending by adopting tax or expenditure limitations. As states face hard choices and a need to balance their budgets, are TELs the answer? 

Join us to discuss these questions:

  • Do TELs Limit Budget Growth?
  • What do states need to know before implementing a TEL?
  • How would a TEL affect your state?

Our panel will feature:

Matthew Mitchell, Research Fellow, Mercatus Center at George Mason University

Micah Kellner, Assembly Member, New York 65th District

Nick Kasprak, Programmer and Analyst, Tax Foundation