South Carolina state budget and finances

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South Carolina budget and finances
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General information
Budget calendar:
Annual
Fiscal year:
2015
State credit rating:
AA+ (as of 2014)
Current governor:
Nikki Haley
Financial figures
Total spending (state and federal funds):
$21.4 billion (estimated for 2014)
Per capita spending:
$4,436.23 (estimated for 2014)
Total state tax collections:
$8.7 billion (2013)
Per capita tax collections:
$1,827.63 (2013)
State debt:
$71.1 billion (as of 2014)
Per capita state debt:
$15,053 (as of 2014)
State budgets and finances
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Total state expendituresState debtTax policy in South Carolina
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 South Carolina decreased by approximately $770 million, from $22.2 billion in fiscal year 2013 to an estimated $21.4 in 2014. This represents a 3.5 percent decrease. 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 South Carolina a credit rating of AA+.[1][2][3]

In 2013, South's Carolina's state tax collections per capita equaled $1,828, the fifth-lowest 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]

In South Carolina in fiscal year 2014, total estimated government spending equaled $21.4 billion, a smaller amount than in any neighboring state.

Total estimated state spending, FY 2014 ($ in millions)
State State funds Federal funds Total spending Population Per capita spending
South Carolina $14,445 $6,993 $21,438 4,832,482 $4,436.23
Georgia $29,545 $11,834 $41,379 10,097,343 $4,098.01
North Carolina $30,996 $12,850 $43,846 9,943,964 $4,409.31
Tennessee $18,832 $13,231 $32,063 6,549,352 $4,895.60
Virginia $35,123 $9,568 $44,691 8,326,289 $5,367.46
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 South Carolina 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 South Carolina in fiscal year 2013, higher education accounted for 19.5 percent of total state expenditures, a greater share than in any neighboring state.

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
South Carolina 17.6% 19.5% 0.4% 22% 2.7% 5.4% 32.4%
Georgia 24.1% 19% 0.1% 21.3% 3.7% 5.7% 26.2%
North Carolina 24.8% 12.4% 0.5% 30% 4.6% 10.7% 17%
Tennessee 17.8% 13.9% 0.4% 30.8% 2.8% 6.1% 28.2%
Virginia 15.1% 15.3% 0.4% 16.7% 2.8% 11% 38.7%
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 share of the South Carolina state budget spent on Medicaid decreased from 23 percent to 21.7 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 15.9% 21.0% 0.4% 21.7% 2.7% 6.6% 31.7%
2012 15.9% 21.0% 0.4% 21.7% 2.7% 6.6% 31.7%
2011 17.3% 21.0% 0.5% 20.7% 2.5% 5.7% 32.3%
2010 17.1% 20.9% 0.3% 22.6% 2.8% 9.1% 27.0%
2009 17.0% 21.0% 0.3% 23.0% 2.9% 6.9% 28.9%
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 South Carolina in 2013, total state tax collections equaled $8.7 billion, a smaller amount than in any neighboring state.

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
South Carolina $8,549 $4,476,982 $439,843 $3,357,518 $386,669 $51,744 $8,721,305 4,771,929 $1,827.63
Georgia $61,052 $7,408,422 $744,401 $8,772,227 $797,255 $10,795 $17,794,152 9,994,759 $1,780.35
North Carolina N/A $9,714,217 $1,543,201 $11,068,166 $1,285,907 $157,087 $23,768,578 9,848,917 $2,413.32
Tennessee N/A $9,128,175 $1,421,174 $262,842 $1,256,173 $298,527 $12,366,891 6,497,269 $1,903.40
Virginia $33,188 $6,192,666 $806,572 $10,900,860 $772,001 $481,566 $19,186,853 8,270,345 $2,319.96
Source: Tax Policy Center, "State Tax Collection Sources 2000-2013," June 20, 2014
South Carolina 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 South Carolina, sales taxes and gross receipts accounted for 51.3 percent of total 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
South Carolina 0.10% 51.33% 5.04% 38.50% 4.43% 0.59%
Georgia 0.34% 41.63% 4.18% 49.30% 4.48% 0.06%
North Carolina N/A 40.87% 6.49% 46.57% 5.41% 0.66%
Tennessee N/A 73.81% 11.49% 2.13% 10.16% 2.41%
Virginia 0.17% 32.28% 4.20% 56.81% 4.02% 2.51%
Source: Tax Policy Center, "State Tax Collection Sources 2000-2013," June 20, 2014

Current fiscal year budget

See also: Historic South Carolina budget and finance information

Fiscal year 2015

DocumentIcon.jpg See budget bill: H 4701

Governor Nikki Haley announced her fiscal year 2015 budget proposal on January 13, 2014. Under the governor's proposal, total spending for fiscal year 2015 would have equaled approximately $23.5 billion, including $6.6 billion in general fund spending.[10]

On June 11, 2014, Haley signed into law the fiscal year 2015 budget. The enacted budget totaled $24 billion, a 6.7 percent increase over fiscal year 2014.[10]

State debt

See also: State debt

According to a January 2014 report by the nonprofit organization State Budget Solutions, South Carolina had a state debt of approximately $71.1 billion. Its state debt per capita was $15,053. 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
South Carolina $71,105,557,000 $15,053 23
Georgia $115,193,862,000 $11,612 39
North Carolina $107,580,297,000 $11,032 42
Tennessee $41,049,738,000 $6,358 50
Virginia $91,339,102,000 $11,158 41
Sources: State Budget Solutions, "State Budget Solutions' Fourth Annual State Debt Report," January 8, 2014

Public pensions

See also: South Carolina public pensions and South Carolina public employee salaries

At the close of 2012, South Carolina's public pension system had total estimated liabilities of $43.5 billion. Of these liabilities, roughly 67.8 percent were funded, meaning the pension system had total unfunded liabilities of approximately $13.9 billion.[12]

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 South Carolina 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
South Carolina AA+ AA+ AA+ AA+ AA+ AA+ AA+ AA+ AA+ AA+ AAA
Georgia AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA
North Carolina AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA
Tennessee AA+ AA+ AA+ AA+ AA+ AA+ AA+ AA+ AA+ AA AA
Virginia AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA
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 the 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 South Carolina’s general revenues came from the federal government in 2012. That year, South Carolina received approximately $6.9 billion in federal aid, 32.41 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
South Carolina $6,892,660 32.41% 28
Georgia $13,794,726 37.92% 7
North Carolina $15,192,577 33.24% 25
Tennessee $11,198,575 40.97% 3
Virginia $9,278,113 23.53% 49
Source: United States Census Bureau, "State Government Finances: 2012," accessed February 24, 2014

Stimulus

South Carolina received $4.39 billion 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 September, agencies submit their budget requests to the governor.
  3. Budget hearings are held with state agencies in September and October.
  4. In January the governor submits his or her proposed budget to the state legislature.
  5. Both the House and the Senate pass a budget. If these versions do not match, a conference committee consisting of both House and Senate members is assembled to reconcile the differences.
  6. The legislature must pass a budget with a simple majority by the beginning of the fiscal year, which is July 1. The governor may exercise line item veto power on the enacted budget.

The governor is constitutionally 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]

A rainy day fund, the General Reserve Fund, must maintain a balance equaling three percent of General Fund revenue. Rainy day funds may be withdrawn only for the purpose of covering operating deficits.[20]

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

Agencies, offices and committees

The following standing committees in the South Carolina State Legislature deal with budget and finance matters:

  1. Finance Committee, South Carolina State Senate

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, South Carolina received a grade of D+ and a numerical score of 63, indicating that South Carolina 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
State finance.jpg
Policy
Budget policy
Ballot measures
By state
By year
Not on ballot
See also: State and local government budgets, spending and finance on the ballot and List of South Carolina ballot measures

Ballotpedia has tracked the following ballot measures relating to state and local budget and financial matters in South Carolina.

  1. South Carolina Amendment 3a, Retirement Systems Act (2006)
  2. South Carolina Capital Reserve Fund Amendment, Amendment 4 (2010)
  3. South Carolina Independent Trusts for Pensions, Amendment 3 (2008)
  4. South Carolina Public Employee Pension Plans, Amendment 2 (2008)
  5. South Carolina Rainy Day Fund Amendment, Amendment 3 (2010)
  6. South Carolina Referendum 5, State Retirement Systems Investment Panel (1996)

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the terms "South Carolina budget."

Some of the stories below may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of Google's news search engine.

South Carolina state budget and finances - Google News Feed

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Contact information

South Carolina Office of State Budget
1205 Pendleton Street, Suite 529
Columbia, South Carolina 29201
Telephone: 803-734-2280

See also

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. South Carolina Retirement Systems 2012 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report," accessed February 27, 2014
  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.gov, "Stimulus Spending by State," accessed February 21, 2014
  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. South Carolina Budget and Control Board, "State Budget - FAQ," accessed February 21, 2014
  21. 21.0 21.1 U.S. Public Interest Research Group, "Following the Money 2014 Report," accessed April 15, 2014