Public Administration Quarterly Vol.11 No.3

Public Administration Quarterly
Local Government Budget Strategy: A Case Study of South Florida.
Thomas D. Lynch
Florida International University.

There are enormous pressures on local government finance. A Brief review of events in the early to mid-1980s shows that local government faced decreasing federal aid, increasing taxpayer resistance to taxes, declining (or static) state-shared revenues and high rates on municipal securities. During the same time, the lower-income strata of the population faced reduced federal assistance, growth areas required new or expanded public services while the existing infrastructures (e.g., roads, sewers, water systems, public buildings) required enormous repair and replacement bills. Given these conditions and others, what type of budget strategy is most likely to receive positive reactions from the public?

The author examined the local budgets and financial reports of governmental entities in Broward and Dade countries, Florida in order to assess the financial capability of those governments to deal with local needs. These findings, plus some simple political logic, served as a basis for answering the local question. Thus, this article first reports on the outlines a budget strategy which, in the author’s view, should have the greatest possibility of achieving popular success in the existing political environment.

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