A new study released by the Mercatus Center at George Mason University takes a close look at financial health of North Carolina state government. Among the findings:
- Real (inflation-adjusted) state spending per capita has increased fourfold in North Carolina since 1970. Three sources of revenue allowed for this increase: (1) tax increases, (2) increased debt, and (3) increased federal transfers.
- North Carolina’s long-run spending trend is unsustainable
- State spending as a percentage of GDP has more than doubled from 1970
- The true shortfall in the state’s pension system is $34.5 billion rather than $3.4 billion when using more realistic discount rates—a tenfold increase in the unfunded liability