Should voters be afraid of hard budget constraint legislation? fiscal responsibility law in brazilian municipalities
AbstractThis manuscript demonstrates that voters have nothing to be afraid of when new hard budgetconstraint legislation is implemented. Our claim is that this kind of legislation reduces theasymmetry of information between voters and incumbents over the budget and, as aconsequence, the latter have incentives to increase the supply of public goods. As anationwide institutional innovation, the Fiscal Responsibility Law (FRL) is exogenous to allmunicipalities; therefore, there is no self-selection bias in its implementation. We show thatpublic goods expenditure increases after the FRL. Second, this increase occurs inmunicipalities located in the country’s poorest region. Third, our findings can be extended tothe supply of public goods because the higher the expenditure with health and education, thegreater the probability of incumbents being re-elected. Finally, there exists a “de facto”higher supply of public goods in education (number of per capita classrooms) after the FRL.
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Date of creation: 29 Jun 2010
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This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2010-07-10 (All new papers)
- NEP-PBE-2010-07-10 (Public Economics)
- NEP-POL-2010-07-10 (Positive Political Economics)
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