Delaware state budget and finances

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Delaware budget and finances
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General information
Budget calendar:
Annual
Fiscal year:
2015
State credit rating:
AAA (as of 2014)
Current governor:
Jack Markell
Financial figures
Total spending (state and federal funds):
$9.2 billion (estimated for 2014)
Per capita spending:
$9,786 (estimated for 2014)
Total state tax collections:
$3.3 billion (2013)
Per capita tax collections:
$3,617 (2013)
State debt:
$16 billion (as of 2014)
Per capita state debt:
$17,437 (as of 2014)
State budgets and finances
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Total state expendituresState debtTax policy in Delaware
Note: This page utilizes information from a variety of sources. As such, the currency of the information varies somewhat. The information presented on this page reflects the most recent data available as of February 2015.
Between fiscal years 2013 and 2014, total government spending in Delaware remained about the same at approximately $9.2 billion. The cumulative rate of inflation during the same period was 1.58 percent, calculated using the Consumer Price Indices for January 2013 and January 2014. As of 2014, financial services firm Standard and Poor's had assigned Delaware a credit rating of AAA.[1][2][3]
In fiscal year 2014, total estimated spending in Delaware amounted to $9.2 billion. Estimated per capita spending totaled $9,786, fourth-highest in the nation.

Spending

Definitions

The information below comes from the National Association of State Budget Officers (NASBO). These spending figures are broken into three broad categories in order to facilitate comparison between the states.[3]

  • State funds: State funds include general and other state-based funds. A general fund is "the predominant fund for financing a state's operations." Other state funds are "restricted by law for particular governmental functions or activities."
  • Federal funds: Federal funds are "funds received directly from the federal government."
  • Total spending: Total spending is calculated by adding together the totals for state and federal funds.

These figures exclude spending from the sale of bonds.

2014 expenditures

See also: Total state expenditures

The table below breaks down estimated spending totals for fiscal year 2014 (comparable figures from surrounding states are included to provide additional context). Figures for all columns except "Population” and “Per capita spending" are rendered in millions of dollars (for example, $2,448 translates to $2,448,000,000). Figures in the columns labeled "Population” and “Per capita spending" have not been abbreviated.[3]

Total estimated spending in Delaware amounted to $9.2 billion in 2014, lowest among its neighboring states. Its estimated per capita spending was highest among its neighbors at $9,786.

Total estimated state spending, FY 2014 ($ in millions)
State State funds Federal funds Total spending Population Per capita spending
Delaware $7,253 $1,903 $9,156 935,614 $9,786.09
Maryland $27,479 $9,859 $37,338 5,976,407 $6,247.57
New Jersey $39,574 $13,566 $53,140 8,938,175 $5,945.29
New York $92,915 $41,171 $134,086 19,746,227 $6,790.46
Pennsylvania $62,391 $23,810 $86,201 12,787,209 $6,741.19
Per capita figures are calculated by taking the state's total spending and dividing by the number of state residents according to United States Census estimates.[4]
Source: National Association of State Budget Officers

Spending by function

See also: State spending by function as a percent of total expenditures
Breakdown of spending by function in FY 2013
Source: National Association of State Budget Officers

State spending in Delaware can be further broken down by function (elementary and secondary education, public assistance, etc.). Fiscal year 2013 information is included in the table below (information from neighboring states is provided for additional context). Figures are rendered as percentages, indicating the share of the total budget spent per category.[3]

In 2013 Delaware dedicated smaller portions of its budget to Medicaid and public assistance than its neighboring states. The largest single portion of its budget was dedicated to K-12 education at 24.3 percent. The bulk of its spending went to expenditures labeled as "Other."

State spending by function as a percent of total expenditures, FY 2013
State K-12 education Higher education Public assistance Medicaid Corrections Trans-
portation
Other
Delaware 24.3% 4.6% 0.3% 17.2% 3% 8.7% 42%
Maryland 19.2% 14.5% 3.8% 21% 4% 10% 27.5%
New Jersey 24.9% 7.9% 0.9% 20.4% 3.1% 10% 32.8%
New York 19.3% 7.6% 3% 29.1% 2.5% 6.4% 32.1%
Pennsylvania 14.9% 2.1% 1.5% 26.9% 2.6% 7.5% 44.6%
Source: National Association of State Budget Officers
Note: "Other" expenditures include "Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), institutional and community care for the mentally ill and developmentally disabled, public health programs, employer contributions to pensions and health benefits, economic development, environmental projects, state police, parks and recreation, housing and general aid to local governments."[3]

Spending trends

Between 2009 and 2013, the portion of Delaware's budget dedicated to Medicaid rose from 12.3 percent to 17.2 percent. Meanwhile, the portion dedicated to transportation fell from 11.1 percent to 8.7 percent. See the table below for further details (figures are rendered as percentages, indicating the share of the total budget spent per category).[3][5][6][7][8]

Spending by function from 2009 to 2013 (as percentages)
Year K-12 education Higher education Public assistance Medicaid Corrections Transportation Other
2013 24.3% 4.6% 0.3% 17.2% 3% 8.7% 42%
2012 24.6% 4.5% 0.3% 15.9% 3.0% 8.9% 42.9%
2011 24.5% 4.7% 0.3% 16.2% 3.0% 8.3% 43.0%
2010 23.8% 4.2% 0.5% 14.4% 2.9% 8.6% 45.5%
2009 23.7% 4.1% 0.3% 12.3% 3.0% 11.1% 45.5%
Source: National Association of State Budget Officers
Note: "Other" expenditures include "Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), institutional and community care for the mentally ill and developmentally disabled, public health programs, employer contributions to pensions and health benefits, economic development, environmental projects, state police, parks and recreation, housing and general aid to local governments."[3]

Revenues

2013 revenues

See also: State government tax collections by source

The table below breaks down state government tax collections by source in 2013 (comparable figures from surrounding states are also provided to give additional context). Figures for all columns except "population" and "per capita revenue" are rendered in thousands of dollars (for example, $2,448 translates to $2,448,000). Figures in the columns labeled "population" and "per capita revenue" have not been abbreviated).[9]

In 2013 Delaware's total tax collections equaled $3.3 billion. Its per capita collections amounted to $3,617.

State tax collections by source ($ in thousands)
State Property taxes Sales and gross receipts Licenses Individual income taxes Corporation net income taxes Other taxes Total 2013 population Per capita collections
Delaware N/A $487,202 $1,259,277 $1,130,501 $309,644 $159,692 $3,346,316 925,240 $3,616.70
Maryland $750,927 $7,347,048 $805,292 $7,693,324 $952,092 $569,508 $18,118,191 5,938,737 $3,050.85
New Jersey $4,620 $12,198,133 $1,516,432 $12,108,615 $2,282,055 $967,026 $29,076,881 8,911,502 $3,262.85
New York N/A $23,217,491 $1,952,367 $40,230,379 $4,920,605 $3,346,329 $73,667,171 19,695,680 $3,740.27
Pennsylvania $55,537 $17,106,300 $2,585,202 $10,777,334 $2,208,163 $1,233,090 $33,965,626 12,781,296 $2,657.45
Source: Tax Policy Center, "State Tax Collection Sources 2000-2013," June 20, 2014
Delaware tax collections by source in 2013
Source: Tax Policy Center

The table below lists 2013 tax collections by source as percentages of total collections. In Delaware, license sales accounted for 37.6 percent of tax collections.[9]

State tax collections by source (as percentages)
State Property taxes Sales and gross receipts Licenses Individual income taxes Corporation net income taxes Other taxes
Delaware N/A 14.56% 37.63% 33.78% 9.25% 4.77%
Maryland 4.14% 40.55% 4.44% 42.46% 5.25% 3.14%
New Jersey 0.02% 41.95% 5.22% 41.64% 7.85% 3.33%
New York N/A 31.52% 2.65% 54.61% 6.68% 4.54%
Pennsylvania 0.16% 50.36% 7.61% 31.73% 6.50% 3.63%
Source: Tax Policy Center, "State Tax Collection Sources 2000-2013," June 20, 2014

Current fiscal year budget

See also: Historic Delaware budget and finance information

Fiscal year 2015

DocumentIcon.jpg See budget bill: SB 255

Governor Jack Markell announced his fiscal year 2015 budget proposal on January 30, 2014. Under the governor's proposal, total state operating funds for fiscal year 2015 would have equaled approximately $3.83 billion. Markell's proposal included $460.9 million in bonds and capital improvements, $253.5 million in capital projects and $207.4 million in transportation projects.[10]

On July 1, 2014, Markell signed into law the fiscal year 2015 operating budget, which totaled approximately $3.8 billion. The enacted budget represented a 2.46 increase over fiscal year 2014. The budget included a $500 raise for state employees.[10]

State debt

See also: State debt

According to a January 2014 report by the nonprofit organization State Budget Solutions, Delaware had a state debt of approximately $16 billion. Its state debt per capita was $17,437. The report revealed that state governments faced a combined $5.1 trillion in debt. The obligation amounted to $16,178 per capita in the nation.[11]

Total state debt, 2014
State Total state debt State debt per capita Per capita debt ranking
Delaware $15,991,093,000 $17,437 17
Maryland $94,211,004,000 $16,010 20
New Jersey $213,933,875,000 $24,134 6
New York $387,465,667,000 $19,799 10
Pennsylvania $184,903,767,000 $14,487 24
Sources: State Budget Solutions, "State Budget Solutions' Fourth Annual State Debt Report," January 8, 2014

Public pensions

See also: Public pensions in Delaware

A 2012 report from the Pew Center on the States noted that Delaware's pension system was funded at 92 percent at the close of fiscal year 2010, above the 80 percent funding level experts recommend. Consequently, Pew designated the state's pension system as a "solid performer."[12]

Taken together, the funding ratio for the state's pension systems decreased from 98.61 percent in fiscal year 2007 to 88.34 percent in fiscal year 2012, a drop of 10.27 percentage points. Likewise, unfunded liabilities increased from approximately $95.6 million in fiscal year 2007 to more than $1 billion in fiscal year 2012.

Credit ratings

See also: State credit ratings

Credit rating agencies, such as Standard and Poor's, assign grades to states that take into account a state's ability to pay debts and the general health of the state's economy. Generally speaking, a higher credit rating indicates lower interest costs on the general obligation bonds states sometimes sell to investors in order to finance large-scale undertakings (e.g., road construction and other public works projects). This in turn results in lower interest costs, thereby lowering the cost to taxpayers.[13][14]

The table below lists the Standard and Poor's credit ratings for Delaware and surrounding states from 2004 to 2014. Standard and Poor's grades range from AAA, the highest available, to BBB, the lowest.[15]

State credit ratings, 2004 to 2014
State 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004
Delaware AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA
Maryland AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA
New Jersey A+ AA- AA- AA- AA AA AA AA AA AA AA-
New York AA AA AA AA AA AA AA AA AA AA AA
Pennsylvania AA AA AA AA AA AA AA AA AA AA AA
Source: Stateline: The Daily News Service of The Pew Charitable Trusts, "Infographic: S&P State Credit Ratings, 2001-2014," June 9, 2014

Federal aid to state budget

See also: Federal aid to state budgets

State governments receive aid from the federal government to fund a variety of joint programs, such as Medicaid. Federal aid varies considerably from state to state. For example, Mississippi received approximately $7.7 billion in federal aid in 2012, which accounted for more than 45 percent of the state's general revenues. By contrast, Alaska received roughly $2.9 billion in federal aid in 2012, just under 20 percent of the state's general revenues.[16]

The table below notes what share of Delaware’s general revenues came from the federal government in 2012. That year, Delaware received approximately $1.8 billion in federal aid, 24.7 percent of the state's total general revenues. Figures from surrounding states are provided for additional context.[16]

Federal aid to state budgets, 2012
State Total federal aid ($ in thousands) Federal aid as a % of general revenue Ranking
Delaware $1,814,112 24.68% 46
Maryland $10,030,264 30.16% 33
New Jersey $13,412,759 26.25% 42
New York $48,698,785 32.78% 27
Pennsylvania $20,440,103 30.60% 32
Source: United States Census Bureau, "State Government Finances: 2012," accessed February 24, 2014

Stimulus

According to Recovery.gov, the official government website for the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board, under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Delaware received $817 million in federal stimulus funding between February 2009 and June 2013.[17]

Budget process

The state operates on an annual budget cycle. The sequence of key events in the budget process is as follows:[18][19]

  1. In July and August of the year preceding the start of the new fiscal year, the governor sends budget instructions to state agencies.
  2. In October, agencies submit their budget requests to the governor.
  3. Budget hearings are held with the public in November.
  4. On or before February 1, the governor submits his or her proposed budget to the state legislature.
  5. The legislature must pass a budget with a simple majority by June 30. The fiscal year then begins in July.

The governor is constitutionally and statutorily required to submit a balanced budget to the legislature. In turn, the legislature must pass a balanced budget, and any budget signed into law by the governor must be balanced.[19]

Delaware is one of 44 states in which the governor has line item veto authority.[19]

Delaware maintains two major governmental funds: the General Fund and the Special Fund. Within the Special Fund, there are four category types: Appropriated Special Funds (ASF), Non-appropriated Special Funds (NSF), Federal Funds and Bond Funds.[20]

Agencies, offices and committees

The following standing committees in the Delaware General Assembly deal with budget and finance matters:

  1. Appropriations Committee, Delaware House of Representatives
  2. Finance Committee, Delaware State Senate
  3. Joint Finance Committee, Delaware House of Representatives
  4. Joint Finance Committee, Delaware State Legislature
  5. Revenue & Finance Committee, Delaware House of Representatives

The Delaware State Auditor evaluates the finances of the state government and prepares reports of findings from its audits. The auditor is elected ever four years in midterm election years and is a partisan office.

The Delaware Treasurer is the chief financial officer of the state government and manages the banking, accounting and investing of the state. The treasurer is elected every four years in midterm election years and is a partisan office.

Studies and reports

U.S. PIRG "Following the Money" report

See also: "Following the Money" report, 2014

The U.S. Public Interest Research Group, a consumer-focused nonprofit organization based in Washington, D.C., released its annual report on state transparency websites in April 2014. The report, entitled "Following the Money," measured how transparent and accountable state websites are with regard to state government spending.[21] According to the report, Delaware received a grade of D+ and a numerical score of 63, indicating that Delaware was "lagging." in terms of transparency regarding state spending.[21]

Budget and finance ballot measures

Voting on
state and local
government budgets,
spending and finance
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Policy
Budget policy
Ballot measures
By state
By year
Not on ballot
See also: Spending and finance on the ballot and List of Delaware ballot measures

Ballotpedia has tracked no ballot measures relating to state and local budget and finance matters in Delaware

Recent news

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Contact

Budget Development and Administration
122 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. South
Dover, DE 19901
Phone: 302-739-4206
FAX: 302-739-5661

See also

External links

Additional reading

References

  1. Bureau of Labor Statistics, "CPI Detailed Report Data for February 2014," accessed April 9, 2014
  2. InflationData.com, "Cumulative Inflation Calculator," February 28, 2014
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 National Association of State Budget Officers, "State Expenditure Report: 2012-2014," accessed February 18, 2015
  4. United States Census Bureau, "State and County QuickFacts," accessed February 23, 2014
  5. National Association of State Budget Officers, "State Expenditure Report, 2009-2011," accessed February 24, 2014
  6. National Association of State Budget Officers, "State Expenditures Report, 2010-2012," accessed February 24, 2014
  7. National Association of State Budget Officers, "State Expenditure Report, 2009," accessed February 24, 2014
  8. National Association of State Budget Officers, "State Expenditure Report, 2008," accessed February 24, 2014
  9. 9.0 9.1 Tax Policy Center, "State Tax Collection Sources 2000-2013," June 20, 2014
  10. 10.0 10.1 National Association of State Budget Officers, "Summaries of Fiscal Year 2015 Proposed and Enacted Budgets," July 11, 2014
  11. State Budget Solutions, "State Budget Solutions' Fourth Annual State Debt Report," January 8, 2014
  12. Pew Center on the States "The Widening Gap Update: Delaware," June 18, 2012
  13. Stateline: The Daily News Service of The Pew Charitable Trusts, "Infographic: S&P State Credit Ratings, 2001-2012," July 13, 2012
  14. Bankrate, "The 6 states with the worst credit ratings," September 27, 2012
  15. Stateline: The Daily News Service of The Pew Charitable Trusts, "Infographic: S&P State Credit Ratings, 2001-2014," June 9, 2014
  16. 16.0 16.1 United States Census Bureau, "State Government Finances: 2012," accessed February 24, 2014
  17. Recovery, "Stimulus Spending by State"
  18. National Conference of State Legislatures "State Experiences with Annual and Biennial Budgeting," updated April 2011
  19. 19.0 19.1 19.2 National Association of State Budget Officers "Budget Processes in the States, Summer 2008," accessed February 21, 2014
  20. State of Delaware Office of Management and Budget, "Budget and Accounting Policy Manual: Chapter 3 - Delaware's Accounting Framework," accessed April 14, 2014
  21. 21.0 21.1 U.S. Public Interest Research Group, "Following the Money 2014 Report," accessed April 15, 2014