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Revenue Autonomy Preference in German State Parliaments

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  • Heinemann, Friedrich
  • Janeba, Eckhard
  • Moessinger, Marc-Daniel
  • Schröder, Christoph

Abstract

Federal states in Germany are characterized by low fiscal autonomy. Equalization systems in place balance revenue differences to a considerable extent and states cannot independently set taxes of any major relevance. Although these features of German federalism are notorious for their disincentives none of the recent reform initiatives of German federalism have been able to change the system. This study makes use of a unique survey among the members of all 16 state parliaments to explain the formation of autonomy preferences. It tests to which extent the preferences of state policy makers for tax autonomy and fiscal equalization are driven by states self-interest, party ideology and individual characteristics. The results point, inter alia, to the role of state deficit and the structural differences between states. States with high permanent deficits are more opposed to tax autonomy and more in favour of higher fiscal equalization transfers.

Suggested Citation

  • Heinemann, Friedrich & Janeba, Eckhard & Moessinger, Marc-Daniel & Schröder, Christoph, 2013. "Revenue Autonomy Preference in German State Parliaments," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79736, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:vfsc13:79736
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Heinemann, Friedrich & Janeba, Eckhard & Schröder, Christoph & Streif, Frank, 2016. "Fiscal rules and compliance expectations – Evidence for the German debt brake," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 142(C), pages 11-23.
    2. Foremny, Dirk & Freier, Ronny & Moessinger, Marc-Daniel & Yeter, Mustafa, 2014. "Overlapping political budget cycles in the legislative and the executive," ZEW Discussion Papers 14-099, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H63 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt - - - Debt; Debt Management; Sovereign Debt
    • H74 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - State and Local Borrowing
    • H77 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - Intergovernmental Relations; Federalism

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