2019

Regulations on Our Radar

Special Analysis 18-05
January 2, 2019
Summary 

This document follows regulatory actions of interest to states, including key dates and links to published rules and notices.

2018

Federal Grants Per Capita, FY 2017

Special Analysis 18-03
November 21, 2018
Summary 

This analysis uses the Census Bureau’s most recent state population estimates and the FFIS grants database to rank states on their per capita receipt of federal grants in a host of areas.

  • The District of Columbia is an outlier in federal grants per capita due to its unique status and relationship with the federal government. Among states, Alaska, New Mexico, and Wyoming hold the top rankings for fiscal year (FY) 2017.

  • Virginia received the lowest grants per capita, about 27% of the amount Alaska received. Other low-ranking states include Utah, Florida, Nebraska, and Kansas.

  • Medicaid drives the results. While average Medicaid grants per capita grew 49% between FY 2012 and FY 2017, non-Medicaid grants grew 6.6%. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has increased Medicaid’s impact as states that expand Medicaid see an influx of federal funds.

  • Puerto Rico ranks near the top of many grants allocated by income and poverty, but ranks last in Medicaid because of a federal cap.

  • Health is the largest category, averaging $1,289 per capita. Federal grants average more than $100 per capita for income security and social services, education, and transportation.

  • Mineral leasing payments drive the results for a few states. While the average state received less than $10 per capita, Wyoming received $1,155, and New Mexico received $218.

New Grants Tracker

Special Analysis 18-02
November 20, 2018
Summary 

The FY 2018 omnibus authorized and/or funded several new grants. The tracker monitors developments related to dispersing these funds.

Highway Funding in a Nutshell

Special Analysis 18-01
March 12, 2018
Summary 

Most of the roughly $675 billion in grants that the federal government provided to state and local governments in fiscal year (FY) 2017 followed a similar legislative path: Congress created programs through authorizing legislation, and either provided mandatory funding in the same legislation, or appropriated funding through the annual budget.

But federal funding for highways works a little bit differently. This Special Analysis provides a short but comprehensive introduction to federal highway funding, addressing some of our most frequently asked questions on the subject.

Grants 101: An Introduction to Federal Grants for State and Local Governments

Special Analysis
January 29, 2018
Summary 

FFIS demystifies the flow of federal funds to their many recipients using charts, graphs, and words. Grants 101 begins with the big picture and slowly works its way down to a more nuanced description of federal grants and how they work.

2017

Federal Grants Per Capita, FY 2016

Special Analysis 17-02
June 15, 2017
Summary 

The Census Bureau released state population estimates for July 1, 2016, at the end of December 2016. Using those estimates and the FFIS grants database, states were ranked on their fiscal year (FY) 2016 per capita receipt of federal funds in a host of areas. Among the major findings:

  • Due to its unique relationship with the federal government, the District of Columbia ranked first in federal grants per capita, followed by Alaska, New Mexico, and Vermont

  • Virginia received the lowest federal grants per capita, about 29% of the amount received by the highest-ranking state. Other states ranking low included Utah, Florida, Nebraska, and Kansas.

  • Medicaid drives most results. Medicaid grew 44% per capita between FY 2011 and FY 2016; non-Medicaid grants grew 2.3%.

  • The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has increased Medicaid’s impact, as states that expand Medicaid see an influx of federal funds.

  • Puerto Rico ranks near the top of many grants allocated by income and poverty, but ranks last in Medicaid because of a federal cap.

  • Income security and social services, education, and transportation are the other categories where federal grants average more than $100 per capita.

  • General government is a small category, but one program drives results for a few states: mineral leasing payments. While the average state received less than $10 per capita, Wyoming received more than $1,100, and New Mexico received $177.

This analysis is accompanied by detailed spreadsheets available to full database subscribers.

What's at Stake in Federal-State Fiscal Relations

Special Analysis 17-01
January 19, 2017
Summary 


The 115th Congress convened earlier this month with an ambitious agenda that could upend the status quo in federal-state fiscal relations. Among the possibilities:

  • Repeal or replacement of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) would have a significant impact on health programs generally, and Medicaid specifically.

  • Federal tax reform could affect states through specific policies, or through state linkages to the federal tax code.

  • Other significant changes to mandatory programs have been proposed in recent years, including converting Medicaid and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to block grants.

  • Completion of the fiscal year (FY) 2017 budget process might bring changes in discretionary programs, as may appropriations in FY 2018 and ensuing years.

  • Reinstatement of the federal debt limit later this year will provide an opening for significant policy changes. In the past, the debt limit debate has been associated with budgetary, economic, and policy upheaval.

  • Certain regulations may be targeted for reform or elimination, with various tools available to pursue such actions.