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Kim Rueben


Senior Fellow
Tax Policy Center

Kim Rueben is an expert on state and local public finance and the economics of education. Her research examines state and local tax policy, fiscal institutions, state and local budgets, issues of education finance and teacher labor markets. Current projects include work on state budget shortfalls, financing options for California, the fiscal health of cities and examining higher education tax credits and grants. In addition to her position at TPC, Rueben is an adjunct fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) and a member of the Strategic Planning Group of the Center for the Analysis of Longitudinal Data in Education Research (CALDER).

Prior to joining the Urban Institute, Rueben was a research fellow at the PPIC. She has served as an adjunct professor at the Georgetown Public Policy Institute and the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley, a visiting scholar at the San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank, and a member of the executive board of the American Education Finance Association.

Publications


Viewing 1-10 of 48. Most recent posts listed first.Next Page >>

State Economic Monitor: July 2014 (Newsletter)
Norton Francis, Kim Rueben, Richard C. Auxier

The latest edition of the Tax Policy Center's State and Local Finance Initiative's State Economic Monitor reports that states are still struggling to emerge from the lingering recession. The good news is that nearly all states experienced economic growth in 2013, and only one state has an unemployment rate above 8 percent. But few states have fully recovered from the 2007 downturn, and new problems are arising. State tax revenues were down in the first quarter, driven by a significant decline in income tax revenue, and a non-government forecast estimates that the revenue drop may become even more severe. The Monitor also reviews the health of other aspects of state economies such as total employment, real earnings, and housing. This edition’s special supplement highlights a new Urban Institute report on public pension plans.

Posted to Web: July 09, 2014Publication Date: July 09, 2014

Who Benefits from Tax-Exempt Bonds?: An Application of the Theory of Tax Incidence (Research Report)
Harvey Galper, Joseph Rosenberg, Kim Rueben, Eric Toder

This paper applies tax incidence theory to estimate the distributional effects of the exemption from federal income tax of interest on state and local bonds and the President's proposal to limit the benefit of the exemption to the 28 percent rate. When one accounts for the effects of changes in rates of return, the exemption still primarily benefits higher-income individuals, though less so than under the traditional approach that assigns all the benefit to holders of tax-exempt bonds. How states and localities respond to lower borrowing costs can either shift benefits to low-income households or increase the net benefit to high income households.

Posted to Web: September 27, 2013Publication Date: September 27, 2013

Finding Just the Right Tax Rate (Commentary)
Kim Rueben

In a contribution to the New York Times' Room for Debate, Kim Rueben argues if the tax rate for marijuana is too high, people will continue to buy weed from the guy on the street. However, setting the tax rate too low leaves revenue on the table and use might boom.

Posted to Web: May 23, 2013Publication Date: May 22, 2013

Analysis of Specific Tax Provisions in President Obama's FY2014 Budget (Research Report)
Benjamin H. Harris, Jim Nunns, Kim Rueben, Eric Toder, Roberton Williams

This document reviews several notable tax proposals in President Obama’s Fiscal Year 2014 Budget. These include a 28 percent limit on certain tax expenditures, a cap on tax preferences for retirement savers with high balances, a minimum tax ("Buffett Rule") on high-income taxpayers, alternative incentives for infrastructure investment, and a new measure of inflation ("chained CPI") for indexing tax parameters.

Posted to Web: May 08, 2013Publication Date: May 08, 2013

What Federal Tax Reform Means for State and Local Tax and Fiscal Policies (Testimony)
Kim Rueben

Kim Rueben's testimony before the Senate Finance Committee on federal tax reform and what it means for the tax and fiscal policies of states.

Posted to Web: April 25, 2012Publication Date: April 25, 2012

Gas Taxes, Gas Prices, and Fuel Economy (Article/Tax Facts)
Kim Rueben, Yuri Shadunsky

Gas prices have increased substantially since the beginning of this year, continuing their upward trend since 1990. American drivers are pushing the federal and state governments to implement policies to lower gas prices. But gasoline taxes have not contributed to the increase in gas prices. Rather than bringing pump prices down, lowering gasoline taxes or having gas tax holidays will mostly shift gasoline purchases across state lines or encourage people to fuel up during the gas tax holidays. Such proposals will siphon away revenues from already cash-strapped states and do little to help consumers and the economy.

Posted to Web: April 24, 2012Publication Date: April 23, 2012

Gasoline Taxes and Rising Fuel Prices (Research Report)
Kim Rueben, Yuri Shadunsky

Gas prices have increased substantially since the beginning of this year, continuing their upward trend since 1990. American drivers are pushing the federal and state governments to implement policies to lower gas prices. But gasoline taxes have not contributed to the increase in gas prices. Rather than bringing pump prices down, lowering gasoline taxes or having gas tax holidays will mostly shift gasoline purchases across state lines or encourage people to fuel up during the gas tax holidays. Such proposals will siphon away revenues from already cash-strapped states and do little to help consumers and the economy.

Posted to Web: April 24, 2012Publication Date: April 24, 2012

Today's Children, Tomorrow's America: Six Experts Face the Facts (Research Report)
C. Eugene Steuerle, Robert D. Reischauer, Margaret Simms, Olivia Golden, Kim Rueben, Lisa Dubay

Urban Institute scholars from diverse disciplines tackle a simple-to-state, hard-to-answer question: How can solutions to our national and state budget crises fit the facts about children in the United States? In their responses, the contributors wrestle with recent and approaching economic and demographic challenges in different ways and bring very different experiences to bear.

Posted to Web: October 25, 2011Publication Date: October 25, 2011

California's Initiative Turns 100: What's the Single Best Thing We Can Do to Improve the Initiative Process? Make it harder. (Commentary)
Kim Rueben

This year marks the 100th Anniversary of California's initiative process. In 1911, California famously adopted the direct initiative process and ballot box decision-making has become almost as synonymous with the Golden State as beaches, hi-tech innovation, and Hollywood. While 75% of voters in California still see direct initiatives as a good thing, a similar percentage thinks it could use some tweaking. In honor of the anniversary, Zócalo Public Square garnered commentary on the initiative process.

Posted to Web: October 12, 2011Publication Date: October 04, 2011

Tax Proposals in the 2012 Budget (Research Report)
Benjamin H. Harris, Elaine Maag, Donald Marron, Jim Nunns, Joseph Rosenberg, Kim Rueben, Eric Toder, Roberton Williams

President Obama's 2012 Budget contains a number of tax provisions that would cut taxes for low- and middle-income households and raise taxes on wealthier taxpayers. This resource guide describes the tax proposals, offers more detailed commentary on key provisions, and links to tables showing the distributional effects of the overall proposal and various elements of the plan.

Posted to Web: March 28, 2011Publication Date: March 21, 2011

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