Fiscal Focus

Fiscal Focus is our bimonthly publication providing news, analysis, and commentary on tax and spending topics in the headlines.


October 25, 2016

September / October 2016

Evaluating the State of State Tax Administration

Our 2016 tax panel examined the current condition of state tax administration, discussed process and procedural concerns of today’s practitioners, and offered ideas to advance a strong ethic and system of voluntary compliance in Minnesota.

Health Care Finance, Cost Control, and the State Budget: Are We Making Progress?

Our 2016 fiscal policy panel delved into the complicated world of public health care spending and what it takes to achieve fiscal sustainability in this large and high profile part of the state government budget.

An Insurance Market in Crisis

Annual meeting luncheon speaker, Michael Guyette, President and CEO, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota exposed the harsh economic realities of the current individual insurance market and presented a call to action to restore the health of this integral part of the health care system.

Lessons From Fully Funded Defined Benefit Pension Plans

What are the keys to having healthy traditional defined benefit plans in this day and age?  As another round of public pension fixes looms in 2017, the answer to that question can come from an unexpected place:  the retirement plans Minnesota public sector unions offer their own employees.

From the Director

New MCFE Director Emeritus recipient Jerry Geis knows.  So should you.

July 27, 2016

July / August 2016

The Reasons Behind Minnesota’s National Property Tax Rankings

Our enhanced 50-State Property Tax Comparison Study now offers new perspective on and understanding about what drives Minnesota’s effective property tax rates and rankings

Pension Politics in 2017 Just Got A Lot More Interesting

Another year of poor investment returns relative to expectations + defined contribution plans' greatest disadvantage infecting defined benefit plans = complicated and controversial pension politics in 2017.

Save the Date: MCFE 90th Annual Meeting and Policy Forum, October 5

We look at the state of state tax administration, health care and the state budget, and more

June 07, 2016

May / June 2016

Session Breaks Bad, Better Call Saul

 Our recap of a messy, confusing, and frustrating 2016 legislative session requires words of wisdom from a great negotiator and problem solver.

Underfunded Pensions and Underfunded Infrastructure:  A Match Made in Heaven?

Direct public pension fund investment in public infrastructure is gaining traction but requires a fundamental rethinking of how we conceptualize and manage public assets.

From the Director: Two Transparency Initiatives We Really Need

Greater process transparency may be welcome but the key to good government is greater transparency with respect to policy substance.   Two efforts in this regard are long overdue.