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Revenue autonomy preference in German state parliaments

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

Fiscal federalism in Germany is characterized by lacking sub-national tax autonomy and intensive fiscal equalization. Due to a sunset clause, the current equalization system has to be renegotiated by the year 2019. Against this backdrop, this contribution studies the reform preferences of members of state parliaments. The study makes use of a self-conducted survey among the members of all 16 German state parliaments. It tests to which extent the preferences of these veto players for tax autonomy and fiscal equalization are driven by states' self-interest, party ideology and individual characteristics. The results are helpful to understand the political-economic constraints of federal reforms. They indicate that besides the individual ideological position higher state wealth and lower debt levels are linked to larger reform support. Therefore, a promising new reform would have to address budgetary legacies like high pre-existing debt.

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Paper provided by ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research in its series ZEW Discussion Papers with number 13-090.

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Date of creation: 2013
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:zewdip:13090
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  1. Moessinger, Marc-Daniel, 2012. "Do personal characteristics of finance ministers affect the development of public debt?," ZEW Discussion Papers 12-068, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  2. repec:mpr:mprres:4780 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. Sam Bucovetsky & Michael Smart, 2006. "The Efficiency Consequences of Local Revenue Equalization: Tax Competition and Tax Distortions," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 8(1), pages 119-144, 01.
  4. Friedrich Heinemann & Philipp Mohl & Steffen Osterloh, 2009. "Who’s afraid of an EU tax and why?—revenue system preferences in the European Parliament," The Review of International Organizations, Springer, vol. 4(1), pages 73-99, March.
  5. Ralf Hepp & Jürgen von Hagen, 2012. "Fiscal Federalism in Germany: Stabilization and Redistribution Before and After Unification," Publius: The Journal of Federalism, Oxford University Press, vol. 42(2), pages 234-259, April.
  6. Wallace E. Oates, 1999. "An Essay on Fiscal Federalism," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(3), pages 1120-1149, September.
  7. Gohlmann, Silja & Vaubel, Roland, 2007. "The educational and occupational background of central bankers and its effect on inflation: An empirical analysis," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(4), pages 925-941, May.
  8. J. O’Roark & William Wood, 2011. "Determinants of congressional minimum wage support: the role of economic education," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 147(1), pages 209-225, April.
  9. Friedrich Heinemann & Eckhard Janeba, 2011. "Viewing Tax Policy Through Party‐Colored Glasses: What German Politicians Believe," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 12(3), pages 286-311, 08.
  10. Zodrow, George R. & Mieszkowski, Peter, 1986. "Pigou, Tiebout, property taxation, and the underprovision of local public goods," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 356-370, May.
  11. von Hagen, Jürgen & Hepp, Ralf, 2000. "Regional risksharing and redistribution in the German federation," ZEI Working Papers B 15-2000, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies, University of Bonn.
  12. Jochimsen, Beate & Thomasius, Sebastian, 2014. "The perfect finance minister: Whom to appoint as finance minister to balance the budget," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 390-408.
  13. Dan Stegarescu, 2005. "Public sector decentralisation: measurement concepts and recent international trends," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 26(3), pages 301-333, September.
  14. Dreher, Axel & Lamla, Michael J. & Lein, Sarah M. & Somogyi, Frank, 2009. "The impact of political leaders' profession and education on reforms," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 169-193, March.
  15. Michael J. Keen & Christos Kotsogiannis, 2002. "Does Federalism Lead to Excessively High Taxes?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(1), pages 363-370, March.
  16. repec:mpr:mprres:4937 is not listed on IDEAS
  17. Oates, Wallace E., 2008. "On The Evolution of Fiscal Federalism: Theory and Institutions," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 61(2), pages 313-34, June.
  18. Etienne Farvaque & Hakim Hammadou & Piotr Stanek, 2011. "Selecting Your Inflation Targeters: Background and Performance of Monetary Policy Committee Members," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 12(2), pages 223-238, 05.
  19. Buettner, Thiess, 2002. "Fiscal federalism and interstate risk sharing: empirical evidence from Germany," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 74(2), pages 195-202, January.
  20. Lars P. Feld & Christoph A. Schaltegger, 2009. "Political Stability and Fiscal Policy - Time Series Evidence for the Swiss Federal Level since 1849," CESifo Working Paper Series 2691, CESifo Group Munich.
  21. Sven Jari Stehn & Annalisa Fedelino, 2009. "Fiscal Incentive Effects of the German Equalization System," IMF Working Papers 09/124, International Monetary Fund.
  22. Bucovetsky, Sam & Wilson, John Douglas, 1991. "Tax competition with two tax instruments," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 333-350, November.
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