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Assistance to the Poor in a Federal System

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  • Charles Brown
  • Wallace E. Oates

Abstract

This paper explores the roles of different levels of government in assisting the poor. Using a model with utility interdependence, the paper presents some theoretical results on how levels of poor relief vary with the extent of mobility of the poor under both centralized and decentralized systems of support. After surveying the relevant empirical work and the experience under the English Poor Laws, the paper argues for a basic role for central government in this function.

Suggested Citation

  • Charles Brown & Wallace E. Oates, 1985. "Assistance to the Poor in a Federal System," NBER Working Papers 1715, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:1715
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Rebecca Blank, 1983. "Welfare, Wages and Migration, An Analysis of Locational Choice by Female-Headed Households," Working Papers 550, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    2. Blaug, Mark, 1963. "The Myth of the Old Poor Law and the Making of the New," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 23(02), pages 151-184, June.
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    6. Rebecca M. Blank, 1983. "Welfare, Wages and Migration, An Analysis of Locational Choice by Female-Headed Households," Working Papers 550, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    7. Cebula, Richard, 1973. "Interstate Migration and the Tiebout Hypothesis: An Analysis According to Race, Sex, and Age," MPRA Paper 49827, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 01 Feb 1974.
    8. Peltzman, Sam, 1980. "The Growth of Government," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 23(2), pages 209-287, October.
    9. Charles M. Tiebout, 1956. "A Pure Theory of Local Expenditures," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 64, pages 416-416.
    10. Edward M. Gramlich, 1982. "An Econometric Examination of the New Federalism," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 13(2), pages 327-370.
    11. repec:fth:prinin:170 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Richard J. Cebula, 2009. "Migration and the Tiebout-Tullock Hypothesis," American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 68(2), pages 541-551, April.
    13. Pauly, Mark V., 1973. "Income redistribution as a local public good," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(1), pages 35-58, February.
    14. Rishi Kumar, 1977. "More on nonwhite migration, welfare levels, and the political process," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 32(1), pages 151-154, December.
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