U.S. Department of Commerce

Government Finance Statistics

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Government finances include revenues, expenditures (spending), debt, and assets (cash and security holdings). Although states and local governments differ among one another in how they record their activities in their legislation and accounting systems, the Census Bureau classifies their data into standard categories so that they may be compared more easily.

These statistics are collected quarterly or annually. Every fifth year (years ending in '2' and '7') the Census of Governments is conducted. The same questions are asked as in the annual surveys, but for every government in the United States, not just a sample.

Topic Frequency Description
Quarterly Summary of State & Local Taxes Quarterly Quarterly estimates of state and local government tax revenue are shown at a national level, and detailed tax revenue data shown for individual states.  The most current information available on a nationwide basis for government tax collections.
Quarterly Survey of Public Pensions Quarterly 100 largest pension systems (defined-benefit plans) as of the previous Census of Governments, followed for five years. Makes up most of the financial activity among defined-benefit pension systems for government employees (89.4 percent as of 2007) Shows revenues, expenditures, and composition of assets.
Annual Survey of Public Pensions: State Data Annual Finance data for state-administered retirement systems for public employees. Includes all 222 state-administered defined.benefit systems. National and state-level aggregates in tables, individual systems in public use files.
Annual Survey of Public Pensions: State & Local Data Annual Finance data for retirement systems (defined-benefit plans) administered by states or local governments. National and state-level aggregates in tables, individual systems in public use files.
Public School Finance Data Annual Finance data of elementary and secondary public school systems. Covers school systems in all states and the District of Columbia.
State Government Tax Collections Annual Summary of taxes collected by state for up to 25 tax categories. Detailed by type of tax.
State Government Finances Annual Finance statistics for each state government (including their dependent agencies).
State & Local Government Finances Annual Finance statistics that include all governments within the geographic area of each state. Includes school districts, special districts, townships, cities, and counties, in addition to the state government.


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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Federal, State, & Local Governments | 1(800) 242-2184| govs.cms.inquiry@census.gov |  Last Revised: May 14, 2013