SLG Job Recovery Momentum and Public Debt of U.S. Territories
State and local government employment continued to recover, Houston sues Texas, and forever chemicals are more commonly found in tapwater.
According to the BLS, employment continued to trend up among state (+27,000) and local governments (+32,000) in June. Overall, government (including federal) has added an average of 63,000 jobs per month thus far in 2023 — more than twice the average of 23,000 per month in 2022. However, despite the gains state and local government employment is 1.1% below its February 2020 peak while private employment is 3.1% above.
In New Jersey, the Governor signed into law a $54 billion budget. It contained the controversial StayNJ program. The program provides any homeowner 65 or older with an annual income of $500,000 or less eligibility for up to a $6,500 property tax rebate starting in January 2026. Officials estimate the program to cost about $1.3 billion.
Houston has also filed suit against the State of Texas over a new law they claim violates a portion of the state constitution allowing cities to self-govern.
StayNJ Tax Rebate for the Elderly Criticized
State Revenues are Taking a Turn
New fiscal year, new taxes Route Fifty
State budget talks going down to the wire Pluribus News
Texas Enacts Law to Limit Local Government Control
Employment in the state and local government (SLG) sector improved, but continues to lag gains in the private sector. Following a blockbuster ADP reported increase in private employment, the official June nonfarm payroll numbers were released and came in lower than estimated. Overall, state and local government employment is 1.1% below its February 2020 peak.
U.S. Territories: Public Debt Outlook - 2023 Update Government Accountability Office (GAO)
Finalizing the overhaul of Puerto Rico’s electric and power operations and adhering to fiscal and financial management reforms are critical to sustained economic growth.
The recent opening of a third U.S. military base on Guam is expected to stimulate economic growth as its economy shows signs of recovery
United States Virgin Islands (USVI) ability to access traditional capital markets is uncertain, leaving it without financing flexibility as it faces serious economic, financial, and demographic challenges.
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI)’s limited financial prospects and weak financial management practices leaves CNMI at risk of a severe fiscal crisis. CNMI officials told GAO they are uncertain how the government will meet its financial obligations.
American Samoa's economy is stable but continues to depend almost entirely on activity generated by the Starkist Samoa Co. tuna cannery and government employment.
Authors estimate that at least one per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), ‘forever chemicals,’ could be detected in about 45% of US drinking-water samples.
Of the tapwater tested from 716 locations, most exposure was observed near urban areas and potential PFAS sources.
It is estimated that the probability of PFAS not being observed in tap water is about 75% in rural areas and around 25% in urban areas according to USGS scientists.
The structure and growth of ethnic neighborhoods Journal of Urban Economics
Researchers introduce a new statistical definition of immigrant ethnic neighborhoods based on a choice model and comparison with the distribution of natives using census tract data from 1970 to 2010.
Increase in the proportion of foreign-born population living in ethnic neighborhoods from 43% in 1970 to 67% in 2010.
Ethnic neighborhoods exhibit lower average incomes and housing values, higher rental housing rates, and increased reliance on non-car commuting compared to other locations where the same ethnic group resides.
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