Contact: Brian Lavin
Public Information Office
The U.S. Census Bureau reports that total revenue for state and local governments reached an all-time high of $3.4 trillion in 2011, up 8.4 percent from 2010, according to new statistics released today. Individual income tax revenue increased 9.5 percent to $284.9 billion, while corporate income tax revenue increased 10.7 percent to $48.5 billion. Overall, tax revenue also reached a record high in 2011, increasing 5.3 percent to $1.3 trillion collected.
Revenues tied to investment assets showed the largest percentage increase for state and local governments. Employee contributions, which include amounts withheld for retirement plans plus any accrued interest, increased 33.3 percent to $553.1 billion. The figures are not adjusted for inflation.
These findings come from the 2011 Annual Surveys of State and Local Government Finances, which include the most recent statistics available on revenues (including taxes), expenditures, debt and assets (cash and security holdings) for state and local governments.
On the expenditure side, state and local governments spent $3.2 trillion in 2011, a 1.5 percent increase from $3.1 trillion in 2010. Education continued to be the largest single expense ($861.1 billion) for 2011, followed by public welfare spending ($492.0 billion) and insurance trust expenses ($361.4 billion).
"State and local government revenues were up for the second consecutive year in 2011," said Lisa Blumerman, chief of the Census Bureau's Governments Division. "The statistics produced from this release provide the only comprehensive insight into the finances of nearly 90,000 state and local governments."
Spending on education accounted for more than one-third of expenditures in four states: Arkansas, Texas, Vermont and West Virginia. Overall spending on higher education increased 3.9 percent to $252.3 billion, while spending on elementary and secondary education continued to decrease, falling 1.3 percent to $564.9 billion.
Other highlights for state and local government finances: