Sungho Park, Craig Maher, and Carol Ebdon, “Local Property Tax Limits in Nebraska: Within-State Variations in Effects.” Journal Article

Local Property Tax Limits in Nebraska: Within-State Variations in Effects

Sungho Park (University of Alabama), Craig Maher (University of Nebraska – Omaha) and Carol Ebdon (University of Nebraska – Omaha)

Public Administration Quarterly (Vol. 42, No. 3: 328-371)

Abstract

Tax and expenditure limitations (TELs) have been widely imposed on state and local governments. A substantial amount of research has been conducted on the effects of TELs, however, most have assumed that a TEL is equally binding on every local government in the state. This may not be the case; the degree to which a TEL constrains a jurisdiction is dependent on its position and context at the time of the TEL implementation, and, further, the responses of these governments might then be expected to be different over time. This study uses data for counties and special purpose districts in Nebraska, where property tax limits became effective in FY1999; we consider a variety of intended and unintended consequences over the 15 years under the limit. Our findings show the fiscal responses to and effects of the limits and how they vary between county governments that were more versus less restricted.