Governing’s Summit on Financial Leadership is an invitation-only gathering of senior executives from state and local government: Participants include finance officials and elected leaders along with key industry experts. Each year, Governing convenes to address priorities and challenges in public finance as well as emerging policy issues impacting states, cities and counties, and we explore those issues in the larger context of evolving social, political and economic trends.
The 2018 Summit will focus on preparing for the next recession, examining projected financial impacts and the less obvious ones on the spending side, and steps governments are taking to get ready for the next downturn.
We are experiencing a prolonged period of economic expansion – the third longest in history. Yet overall, recovery has been sluggish and state and local finances are fragile. Demands on service delivery continue to grow, and Medicaid and pension costs especially are crowding out spending on everything else, including vital infrastructure and non-deferrable disaster recovery. Given those outsized pressures, how are states and local jurisdictions preparing for the inevitable next recession? What is needed to better manage the impacts of that recession – not just on the fiscal side, but the disproportionate impact it is likely to have on marginal populations and jurisdictions less prepared?
More than ever, forward-looking leadership, pragmatic fiscal management, and innovation are key to ensure that social investments become more efficient and produce sustained improvements on population outcomes. Our program will offer new insights on creative financing tools and performance-driven strategies to help governments prepare for and weather future recessions.