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Handbook of Local Government Fiscal Health

Author(s): Helisse Levine, PhD, Long Island University, Brooklyn, New York
Eric A. Scorsone, PhD, Co-Chair, State and Local Government Program, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan
Jonathan B. Justice, PhD, MPA, Associate Professor, School of Urban Affairs & Public Policy, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware
  • ISBN-13: 9780763792305
  • Paperback    558 pages      © 2013
Price: $123.95 US List
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Instructor Resources: Instructor's Manual, PowerPoints, TestBank
(Available in June. Contact your Account Specialist to be notified as these become available.)

Handbook of Local Government Fiscal Health reinvigorates the debate surrounding the monitoring, reporting, assessing, and managing of local government fiscal stress, bankruptcy, and state takeovers. It provides both a solid conceptual basis for understanding the sources and causes behind local government fiscal stress and crisis, as well as tools for monitoring, reporting, and addressing such crises. Based on theoretical frameworks as well as empirical evidence and case studies, this book also addresses such issues as the impact of GASB 34 and GASB 45 on the assessment of policies that address fiscal stress and crisis.

Ideal for students of Public Policy and Public Administration, Handbook of Local Government Fiscal Health seeks to both advance the state of the field in terms of research and frameworks around fiscal stress in local government as well as provide an assessment of the tools, monitoring practices, and state and local policies that are used to address situations of fiscal stress.

Key Features:

  • Gathers current thinking and research on the topic for use by academics and students, and updates classic works on fiscal stress and fiscal distress by Terry Clark, Charles Levine, and others.
  • Serves as a desk reference for practitioners, especially now that the topic of fiscal health is again taking center stage.
  • Provides comprehensive coverage of the many environmental and organizational factors influencing fiscal health, as well as the full range of concerns and concepts relevant to defining and measuring fiscal health.



  Chapter  1  Introduction by Eric Scorsone, Helisse Levine, and Jonathan Justice
Part  I  Fiscal Health and Sustainability Concepts and Measures
  Chapter  2  Assessing the Financial Condition of Local Governments: What is Financial Condition and How is it Measured? By Benoy Jacob and Rebecca Hendrick
  Chapter  3  Local Government Fiscal Stress and its Measurement in Theory and Practice By Jonathan Justice and Eric Scorsone
Part  II  Financial Reporting and Modeling
  Chapter  4  The Development of External Financial Reporting and Its Relationship to the Assessment of Fiscal Health and Stress By Dean Michael Mead
  Chapter  5  Long-Term Forecasting By Kenneth A. Kriz
Part  III  Pensions and Other Postemployment Benefits
  Chapter  6  Postemployment Benefits and Fiscal Analysis By Dean Michael Mead
  Chapter  7  Sustainable Approaches to Retiree Benefits: Options and Implementation for Program Design and Financing By Jun Peng
Part  IV  Revenue Elasticity and Adequacy
  Chapter  8  Public-Finance and Fiscal-Federalism Perspectives on Local Government Revenue Bases and Fiscal Sustainability By Donijo Robbins
  Chapter  9  Understanding and Measuring Revenue Elasticity, Volatility, and Implications for Local Government Fiscal Health By Deborah A. Carroll and Christopher B. Goodman
Part  V  Business Cycle, Bubbles, and Reserve Funds: Cutback Management
  Chapter  10  Fiscal Stress and Cutback Management amongst State and Local Governments: What Have We Learned and What Remains to Be Learned? By Christina Plerhoples and Eric Scorsone
  Chapter  11  A Framework for Deciphering and Managing the Fiscal Environment By Josephine M. LaPlante
  Chapter  12  Fiscal Slack, Reserves, and Rainy-Day Funds by Justin Marlowe
  Chapter  13  Managing Investments and Investment Risks By William Albrecht
Part  VI  Intergovernmental and Institutional Considerations
  Chapter  14  Local Government Fiscal Health: An Intergovernmental Perspective By Beth Walter Honadle
  Chapter  15  Monitoring the Fiscal Health of America’s Cities By Lynne A. Weikart
  Chapter  16  Measuring the Impacts of TELs on Municipal Financial Conditions By Craig S. Maher and Steven C. Deller
  Chapter  17  The Defragmentation of Authority: A Consolidation Approach to Public Service Delivery by Helisse Levine
Part  VII  Debt Capacity, Management, and Policy
  Chapter  18  Measurin and Monitoring Debt Capacity and Affordability: Market and Nonmarket-Based Models By Kenneth A. Kriz and Qiushi Wang
  Chapter  19  State Fiscal Constraints on Local Government Borrowing: Effects on Scale and Cost By Juita-Elena (Wie) Yusuf, Jacob Fowles, Cleopatra Grizzle, and Gao Liu
  Chapter  20  Good Debt, Gone Bad: The 2008–2009 Crisis in Municipal Debt Markets By Gary R. Rassel and Robert S. Kravchuk

Helisse Levine, PhD-Long Island University, Brooklyn, New York


Helisse Levine is assistant professor, Master of Public Administration Program, School of Business, Public Administration and Information Sciences at Long Island University, Brooklyn New York, where she teaches courses in public sector budgeting, healthcare financial management and research methods. She holds a Ph.D. in Public Administration from Rutgers University. Her research interests center on state and local government budgetary decision making, fiscal implications of economic cycles on sub-national governments, transparency in the municipal bond market, and the issue of gender in public administration. She has contributed to the Municipal Finance Journal, Administrative Theory & Praxis, and Gender in Management: an International Journal.
Additional Titles by this Author

Eric A. Scorsone, PhD-Co-Chair, State and Local Government Program, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan

Jonathan B. Justice, PhD, MPA-Associate Professor, School of Urban Affairs & Public Policy, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware

  • Chapter 1
    Chapter 1: Editors` Introduction, by Eric Scorsone, Helisse Levine, and Jonathan Justice
  • Chapter 2
    Chapter 2: Assessing the Financial Condition of Local Governments by Benoy Jacob and Rebecca Hendrick
  • Frontmatter

The following instructor resources are available to qualified instructors for download

ISBN-13: 9780763792305

Instructor Manual
Slides in PowerPoint Format
Test Bank