The impact of government structure on local public expenditures
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Though the relationship between local government structure and expenditure has received considerable attention, there is little consensus as to how the features of representative government affect local expenditure. An exception is city council size, which has consistently been found to be positively related to spending. Previous results rely on cross-sectional estimation which may be subject to omitted variable bias. This paper analyzes three components of municipal governments—the form of government, the size of the city council, and the election method of city councilors. Once fixed effects estimation is employed, the positive relationship between city council size and expenditure disappears.
KeywordsLocal government City manager Law of 1/n Election method Council size Government expenditure
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