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Bureaucratic Choice and Nonoptimal Provision of Public Goods: Theory and Evidence

  • Hayes, Kathy J
  • Razzolini, Laura
  • Ross, Leola B

Local governments' allocation decisions are modeled in the context of a slack maximizing bureaucrat who produces public goods according to a production function that includes both provision and the constituents' socioeconomic characteristics. To gain a better understanding of the determinants of slack, comparative statics and an empirical study of Illinois municipalities are conducted. The indirect output distance function provides efficiency scores upon which the authors regress several variables, representing socioeconomic characteristics, costs, and competition measures. They find that slack or inefficient behavior is associated with richer communities, lower education levels, and a lack of competition for residents among municipalities. Copyright 1998 by Kluwer Academic Publishers

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Article provided by Springer in its journal Public Choice.

Volume (Year): 94 (1998)
Issue (Month): 1-2 (January)
Pages: 1-20

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Handle: RePEc:kap:pubcho:v:94:y:1998:i:1-2:p:1-20
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  1. Fare, R. & Grosskopf, S. & Lovell, C. A. K., 1988. "An indirect approach to the evaluation of producer performance," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 71-89, October.
  2. Charles M. Tiebout, 1956. "A Pure Theory of Local Expenditures," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 64, pages 416.
  3. Greene, William H., 1980. "Maximum likelihood estimation of econometric frontier functions," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 27-56, May.
  4. Hamilton, Bruce W., 1983. "The flypaper effect and other anomalies," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 347-361, December.
  5. Pommerehne, Werner W. & Frey, Bruno S., 1977. "Bureaucratic behavior in democracy: A case study," Discussion Papers, Series I 104, University of Konstanz, Department of Economics.
  6. Deller, Steven C. & Rudnicki, Edward, 1993. "Production efficiency in elementary education: The case of Maine public schools," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 45-57, March.
  7. Brueckner, Jan K., 1982. "A test for allocative efficiency in the local public sector," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 311-331, December.
  8. Niskanen, William A, 1975. "Bureaucrats and Politicians," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(3), pages 617-43, December.
  9. Grosskopf Shawna & Hayes Kathy, 1993. "Local Public Sector Bureaucrats and Their Input Choices," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 151-166, March.
  10. Schmidt, Peter & Sickles, Robin C, 1984. "Production Frontiers and Panel Data," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 2(4), pages 367-74, October.
  11. Sonstelie, Jon C. & Portney, Paul R., 1980. "Gross rents and market values: Testing the implications of Tiebout's hypothesis," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 102-118, January.
  12. Davis, Michael L & Hayes, Kathy, 1993. "The Demand for Good Government," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 75(1), pages 148-52, February.
  13. Gradstein, Mark, 1992. "Time Dynamics and Incomplete Information in the Private Provision of Public Goods," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(3), pages 581-97, June.
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