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Working papers from the Economics Department of the OECD that cover the full range of the Department’s work including the economic situation, policy analysis and projections; fiscal policy, public expenditure and taxation; and structural issues including ageing, growth and productivity, migration, environment, human capital, housing, trade and investment, labour markets, regulatory reform, competition, health, and other issues.
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Reforming Federal Fiscal Relations in Austria
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- Andrés Fuentes1, Eckhard Wurzel, Andreas Wörgötter1
- Author Affiliations
- 1: OECD, France
- 23 Jan 2006
- Bibliographic information
This paper reviews the fiscal relations between the three levels of government in Austria and points to the scope for reforming them with a view to improving the efficiency of the public sector. Key areas of public sector activity are subject to complex relations across the three layers of government. Fragmentation of decision-making in some spending programmes, such as hospital care and social assistance benefits, needs to be overcome, concentrating financing and spending responsibilities on one government level. Strengthening co-operation between municipalities as well as amalgamations of small municipalities would allow advantage to be taken of scale economies in the provision of local government services. Stronger tax-raising powers of the municipalities and the states, reform of tax sharing rules and improved budgeting procedures would raise the ability of sub-national governments to match the supply of services to local demand patters and improve accountability to voters. This Working Paper relates to the 2005 OECD Economic Survey of Austria (www.oecd.org/eco/surveys/austria)
- federalism, intergovernmental relations, state and local government finances
- JEL Classification:
- H71: Public Economics / State and Local Government ; Intergovernmental Relations / State and Local Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue
- H72: Public Economics / State and Local Government ; Intergovernmental Relations / State and Local Budget and Expenditures
- H77: Public Economics / State and Local Government ; Intergovernmental Relations / Intergovernmental Relations ; Federalism ; Secession