10 States Hurtling Toward California-Level Disaster

More

California was only the beginning.

Nine more states are "barreling toward an economic disaster" according to a new Pew poll that sees deep service cuts and temporary tax hikes to avoid fiscal calamity. Some of these states will be familiar to Atlantic Business readers. I've been leading the funeral cry for the united states of MichiCaliFlAriVada (that's Michigan, California, Florida, Arizona and Nevada), and all five states are on Pew's list. Rounding out the ten are Illinois, New Jersey, Oregon, Rhode Island and Wisconsin. Here's the graph from the Pew Center on the States:


Six Factors
Revenue change
Budget gap
Unemployment rate change
Foreclosure rate
Need supermajority?

GPP "money" grade
Score
















United States
-11.70%
17.7%5
4.4
1.37%
17 yes, 33 no

B- 5
17
















California
-16.20%
49.30%
4.6
2.02%
Yes

D+
30
















Arizona
-16.50%
41.10%
3
2.42%
Yes

C+
28
















Rhode Island
-12.50%
19.20%
4.5
1.50%
Yes

D+
28
















Michigan
-16.50%
12.00%
6
1.47%
Yes

C+
27
















Oregon
-19.00%
14.50%
6.4
0.86%
Yes

C+
26
















Nevada
1.50%
37.80%
5.2
3.12%
Yes

C+
26
















Florida
-11.50%
22.80%
4.4
2.72%
Yes

B-
25
















New Jersey
-15.80%
29.90%
3.7
1.18%
No

C-
23
















Illinois
-10.90%
47.30%
3.5
1.44%
No

C-
22
















Wisconsin
-11.20%
23.20%
4.4
0.96%
No

C+
22

This horrible news only underscores the fact that even though 70% of stimulus spending has gone to fill in Medicaid and state budget holes, our states are still in dire straits because state tax revenue is collapsing across the country.

State Tax Revs & Economic Changes

Unlike the federal government, states cannot run deficits, which means cascading revenue becomes cascading services and many, many cut state jobs. For those who resist another state bailout-type stimulus bill, they must recognize what that entails: hundreds of thousands of state employees joining the ranks of unemployment, and unemployment benefits. Q3 was great, but this thing isn't close to being over.

Update: The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities reports that states could cut almost a million jobs without US aid because of budget shortfalls.

Jump to comments
Presented by

Derek Thompson is a senior editor at The Atlantic, where he writes about economics, labor markets, and the entertainment business.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

What Crazy Tech Idea Could Become Real?

"There could be great intelligence enhancements, like infinite memory."


Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

A Time-Lapse of Alaska's Northern Lights

The beauty of aurora borealis, as seen from America's last frontier

Video

What Do You Wish You Learned in College?

Ivy League academics reveal their undergrad regrets

Video

Famous Movies, Reimagined

From Apocalypse Now to The Lord of the Rings, this clever video puts a new spin on Hollywood's greatest hits.

Video

What Is a City?

Cities are like nothing else on Earth.

Video

CrossFit Versus Yoga: Choose a Side

How a workout becomes a social identity

Video

In Online Dating, Everyone's a Little Bit Racist

The co-founder of OKCupid shares findings from his analysis of millions of users' data.

Writers

Up
Down

More in Business

Just In