R.I. public spending growth below U.S., still above per-capita average
DESPITE AN INCREASE of less than the national average from fiscal year 2010 to 2011, total direct government spending in Rhode Island remained greater than the national per capita level in fiscal 2011.
PROVIDENCE – Direct state and local government spending in Rhode Island increased 1.1 percent between fiscal 2010 and fiscal 2011, less than the 1.7 percent increase nationally, according to a report from the Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council released Tuesday.
Rhode Island and its municipalities spent $9.2 billion in fiscal 2011, or $203.69 for every $1,000 in personal income of its residents. The national average was $203.84 per thousand dollars of income.
On a per capita basis, however, Rhode Island governments spent $8,769 in fiscal 2011, 4.8 percent more than the national average of $8,366, RIPEC said.
From fiscal 2010 to fiscal 2011, Rhode Island direct government spending (which excludes utility and liquor store, and insurance trust spending) increased the most in transportation, 4.6 percent year over year, with social services and income maintenance the second highest increase, at 2.1 percent.
On a national level, social service spending increased 6.1 percent year over year, far outstripping every other category.
Education spending, which includes libraries, represented the largest share of Rhode Island government expenditures, at roughly one-third of all spending.
Between fiscal 2000 and fiscal 2011, education spending accounted for 23 percent of all increases in government spending, compared with 19 percent nationally.
Vendor payments (mostly Medicaid related) accounted for 37 percent of spending increases, compared with 21 percent nationally.