by Joseph Coletti
Senior Fellow, Fiscal Studies, John Locke Foundation
This is part of a continuing series of posts explaining the state budget.
Half the money state government spends comes not from state taxes and fees, but from the federal government and other sources.
Half of the $18 billion in federal funds budgeted by the state goes to Medicaid, with another $3 billion for SNAP, school meals, and other food programs.
Universities and community colleges receive $3 billion in federal aid, but two-thirds of that is in the form of tuition and housing payments from students, so in budget documents it looks like something other than federal funds.
Federal spending has begun to decline, but remains 50 percent higher than pre-recession levels.
Besides student tuition and fees, lottery revenue and unemployment funds are the primary sources and uses of what the Office of State Budget and Management calls “other revenues.”