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Income Distribution, Communities and the Quality of Public Education: A Policy Analysis

  • Fernandez, R.
  • Rogerson, R.

This paper analyzes within the context of a multicommunity model the effects of several policies that affect the financing of public education. The key features of the model are: (I) individuals differ with respect to income, (ii) individuals choose in which community to reside, (iii) communities are characterized by a proportional tax on income and a quality of public education, and (iv) a community's tax rate is chosen by majority vote. We examine three types of policies: subsidies for residency of specific income groups in particular communities, ceilings or floors on community level educational spending, and income redistribution. In each case we examine the consequences of these policies for both welfare and the quality of education across communities. We identify several policies which make all individuals better off and increase the quality of education in all communities.

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Paper provided by Boston University - Department of Economics in its series Papers with number 1.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: 1992
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fth:bostec:1
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  1. David Card & Alan Krueger, 1990. "Does School Quality Matter? Returns to Education and the Characteristics of Public Schools in the United States," NBER Working Papers 3358, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Roberts, Kevin W. S., 1977. "Voting over income tax schedules," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 329-340, December.
  3. Epple, Dennis & Filimon, Radu & Romer, Thomas, 1984. "Equilibrium among local jurisdictions: toward an integrated treatment of voting and residential choice," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 281-308, August.
  4. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:108:y:1993:i:3:p:619-52 is not listed on IDEAS
  5. Durlauf, S.N., 1992. "A Theory of Persistent Income Inequality," Papers 47, Stanford - Institute for Thoretical Economics.
  6. Rubinfeld, Daniel L., 1987. "The economics of the local public sector," Handbook of Public Economics, in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 11, pages 571-645 Elsevier.
  7. Epple, Dennis & Romer, Thomas, 1991. "Mobility and Redistribution," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(4), pages 828-58, August.
  8. Stiglitz, J. E., 1974. "The demand for education in public and private school systems," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 349-385, November.
  9. Rose-Ackerman, Susan, 1979. "Market models of local government: Exit, voting, and the land market," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(3), pages 319-337, July.
  10. Roland Benabou, 1991. "Workings of a City: Location, Education, and Production," NBER Technical Working Papers 0113, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Westhoff, Frank, 1977. "Existence of equilibria in economies with a local public good," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 84-112, February.
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