Cities in Fiscal Equalization
Redistributive grants schemes, such as fiscal equalization, are a common characteristic of local public finance in several countries. However, large and small jurisdictions are treated differently by the respective fiscal equalization schemes that often tend to favour larger jurisdictions. This paper provides a theoretical analysis showing that efficiency considerations might justify a preferential treatment of large jurisdictions. More specifically, we show that an efficient grant scheme would enable large jurisdictions such as cities to provide more public services. Under some conditions, the resulting budget of cities will exceed that of small towns in per-capita terms. Moreover, in a setting with local capital taxation we find that an efficient equalization scheme would also allow cities to retain a larger share of own funds.
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CESifo Working Paper Series
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- Thiess Buettner & Fédéric Holm-Hadulla, 2008. "Fiscal Equalization: The Case of German Municipalities," CESifo DICE Report, Ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 6(1), pages 16-20, 04.
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- Thiess Buettner, 2005. "The Incentive Effect of Fiscal Equalization Transfers on Tax Policy," CESifo Working Paper Series 1404, CESifo Group Munich.
- Büttner, Thiess, 2005. "The Incentive Effect of Fiscal Equalization Transfers on Tax Policy," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 37, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
- Michael Smart, 1998. "Taxation and Deadweight Loss in a System of Intergovernmental Transfers," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 31(1), pages 189-206, February.
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