Data-Z News

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Over Two Thirds Of U.S. States Do Not Have Enough Cash To Pay Their Obligations

OCTOBER 25, 2022 | by Mayra Rodriquez Valladares

Thirty-one states, or over two-thirds of U.S. states, do not have enough cash to pay their bills. For the thirteenth year in a row, nonpartisan accounting watchdog Truth in Accounting (TIA) released its ‘Financial State of the States’ report today describing the weak financial condition of numerous states.

Student Debt Average by State


President Biden has proposed the cancellation of federal student debt across the country. 

Students from every state accumulate debt. As indicated by the Data-Z chart below, on average students in Utah graduate from their undergraduate studies with student debt of $18,344, which is the least amount of all of the states. The four other states with the least amount of average student debt are New Mexico with $20,868, California with $21,125, Nevada with $21,257 and Wyoming with $23,510. READ MORE



Disclaimer for Anomalous 2020 Census Data

AUGUST 30, 2022

On Data-Z most demographic information comes from the American Community Survey (ACS) of the U.S. Census Bureau, and consistently reports the one-year estimates for demographic data instead of the five-year estimates. According to the Census Bureau, one-year estimates are less reliable but more current than five-year estimates.  For more information on the differences see this article: When to Use 1-year or 5-year Estimates.

Connecticut Slows the Flow of AGI and Taxpayer Returns in 2020

AUGUST 1, 2022 | by Karen Danford

The state’s net AGI migration improved by nearly $1.4 billion, from around negative $1.6 billion to negative $302 million, in 2020. The IRS’ newly released interstate Adjusted Gross Income migration data show how much wealth states lost or gained between 2019 and 2020. The latest available data is for 2020. Net AGI migration in 2020 is calculated by subtracting AGI inflow from AGI outflow. The change between 2019 and 2020 in net AGI migration takes an individual state’s net AGI migration in 2020 and subtracts it from net AGI in 2019.

When assessing the states whose wealth increased the most between 2019 and 2020 through migration, most follow previous AGI migration trends: Florida, Tennessee, Nevada, and Texas are among the top states for net AGI increase in 2020. Most of these states’ performance has been analyzed by Truth In Accounting: Top and Bottom Net AGI 2020 AnalysisREAD MORE

Illinois Credit rating upgrades lead to more borrowing

JUNE 9, 2022 | by Sheila Weinberg

On the heels of credit rating upgrades, Illinois has sold $1.6 billion worth of bonds to fund a pension buyout program and construction projects. As the Chicago Tribune reported, Gov. J.B. Pritzker touted the upgrades lauding Democratic leaders for their work “to make sure that we’re back in good fiscal order, that the state is building its fiscal foundations for the road ahead.” But as Hetty Chang of Moody has stated, ratings are not “public policy report cards, although politicians may use them as such.” Credit ratings do not focus on the overall financial condition of the state; they focus on the likelihood of bonds being paid.

And if the state is in such “good fiscal order,” then why did it need to borrow money?  

City Combined Taxpayer Burden Report 2022

MAY 24, 2022

Did you know that many cities, such as Chicago and Los Angeles, do not include the financial information of their school districts and other underlying entities in their financial reports and budgets? The result is taxpayers are on the hook for far more debt than they know. To provide a more complete picture of the 10 most populous U.S. cities including their largest underlying government units, Truth in Accounting has released its annual City Combined Taxpayer Burden report.

New York City’s Debt Amounts to $71,400 Per Taxpayer

MARCH 1, 2022 | REALCLEAR POLICY | by Adam Andrzejewski

Includes: “New York City is in trouble. A new report by Truth In Accounting, a nonpartisan nonprofit that specializes in government transparency, shows that New York City has $204.4 billion in debt—$71,400 per taxpayer. This means that each taxpayer would have to pay $71,400 in future taxes without receiving any related services or benefits."

Watchdog Group Calls BS on Philly’s Budget Numbers

MARCH 1, 2022 | DELAWARE VALLEY JOURNAL | by Gregory Bresiger

Includes: "While these cities may appear to have balanced their books, the reality is very different, says TIA founder Sheila Weinberg.  'They have surpluses and seem to be in good shape. But it is misleading; they are ignoring their debts,' Weinberg told Delaware Valley Journal. 'It’s a little like saying, ‘well, you got plenty of cash in your pockets but just ignore those big credit card debts you have in your back pockets.’”

Twelve Out of Fifteen California Cities Don’t Have Money to Pay their Bills According to Accounting Study

FEBRUARY 22, 2022 | CALIFORNIA POLICY CENTER | by Brandon Ristoff

Includes: "Truth in Accounting recently released their 2022 “Fiscal State of the Cities.” The report examines the balance sheets of the seventy-five largest U.S. cities, including fifteen California cities, which it analyzed using 'Full Accrual Calculations and Techniques. ... a dozen California cities are in the red. Sacramento, Santa Ana, Los Angeles, San Diego, and Anaheim have between $4,300 and $6,600 of tax burden per taxpayer."

Congratulations to the Rams

FEBRUARY 14, 2022 | TRUTH IN ACCOUNTING | by Truth in Accounting

Even before the game started, Truth in Accounting concluded Los Angeles beat Cincinnati. LA's Taxpayer Burden is only $6,400 compared to Cincinnati's $18,200. These amounts represent each taxpayer's share of their city's debt, including unfunded pension and retiree health care liabilities.

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