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Challenges for New Governors: Healing Battered Budgets and Employment Woes

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Tuesday, November 2, 2010
11:45 a.m.-1:30 p.m. ET

First Tuesdays

Watch this forum on C-SPAN.

Listen to the event

Audio Recording


Robert Lerman

Robert Lerman, an expert on how education, employment, and family structure work together to affect economic well-being, is the Urban Institute’s first Institute fellow in labor and social policy. He directed its Labor and Social Policy Center from 1995 to 2003. His work on youth apprenticeships in the late 1980s encouraged the creation of national school-to-work programs. Lerman’s current research includes youth transitions from school to career. He chaired the American University economics department from 1989 to 1995 and continues to be a professor of economics there.institute fellow, Urban Institute

Edward Montgomery

Edward Montgomery is dean of the Georgetown Public Policy Institute and previously served on President Obama’s Auto Task Force and as executive director of the White House Council for Auto Communities and Workers. He was dean of the University of Maryland’s College of Behavioral and Social Sciences from 2003 to 2009, where he was a professor of economics since 1992.  Montgomery was deputy secretary and chief operating officer at the U.S. Department of Labor in the Clinton administration and held faculty appointments at Michigan State and Carnegie Mellon universities.

Richard Ravitch

Richard Ravitch, lieutenant governor of New York, was appointed to the post by Governor David Paterson in 2009. Earlier, he was a partner in the law firm Ravitch, Rice & Co. In 1975, he was chairman of the New York State Urban Development Corporation. In 1975 and 1976, Ravitch helped resolve New York City’s defaults, negotiating federal guaranty arrangements with the Ford administration and acting as an intermediary between the city and the municipal unions and their pension funds. In 1979, Ravitch was appointed chairman and CEO of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. The first chairman of the Corporation for Supportive Housing, Ravitch was co-chair of the Millennial Housing Commission, which examined the federal government’s role in meeting the nation’s affordable housing challenges.

Kim Rueben

Kim Rueben directs the state and local program of the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center, where she is a senior fellow. An expert on state and local public finance and the economics of education, her research examines state and local tax policy, fiscal institutions, and education finance and teacher labor markets. Rueben is an adjunct fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California and a member of the strategic planning group of the Center for Analysis of Longitudinal Data in Education Research. Prior to joining the Urban Institute, Rueben was a research fellow at PPIC and a visiting scholar at the San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank. 

Raymond Scheppach

Raymond Scheppach was appointed executive director of the National Governors Association in January 1983. He oversees its day-to-day operations and helps identify priorities for the nation’s governors. Scheppach worked for seven years at the Congressional Budget Office, serving the last two years as deputy director. The author or co-author of four books on economics, Scheppach specializes in federal and state budgets, health care policy, energy policy, and United States federalism. The Hill has named Scheppach to several of its annual lists of top association lobbyists. He is a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration and National Academy of Social Insurance.

Margaret Simms

Margaret Simms (moderator) is an Institute fellow at the Urban Institute and director of its Low-Income Working Families project. Prior to joining the Institute in 2007, she was vice president for governance and economic analysis at the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, where she began working in 1986. Simms was a senior research associate at the Urban Institute from 1979 to 1986 and directed its Minorities and Social Policy Program from 1981 to 1986. She has taught at Atlanta University and the University of California at Santa Cruz and has written extensively about employment and training, education, and income and poverty.

On November 2, 37 states will hold gubernatorial and legislative elections, with two dozen or more new governors expected when the day is done. Beleaguered state budgets, high unemployment, and a slow economic recovery are posing difficulties coast to coast, so what's in store for these new executives and what can they expect to accomplish in the aftermath of the Great Recession?

Panelists will discuss the expenditure-revenue gap facing states, the dreary employment situation, job creation strategies, and their budgetary implications. They will weigh in on such questions as

- What tradeoffs and conflicts will governors be facing and how should they deal with them?
- As “laboratories of democracy,” what are states learning from each other’s travails?
- How can states generate economic growth and jobs?
- What are the bright spots on the horizon for states?

- Rueben: State Budget Deficits
- Scheppach: State Government Redesign Efforts 2009 and 2010

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