U.S. governments are facing constant challenges funding things like infrastructure maintenance and development, pension obligations and even adequate citizen service operations. The typical path to meeting those challenges is to figure out how to get enough funds for the next year or two - generally leading to 'budget gimmicks' and the problems come up again in the next budget cycle.
But, what if we had the assets to provide long-term funding streams without raising taxes? In fact, governments hold tremendous assets - but those assets aren't being managed to generate such a continuous revenue stream. We have the tools sitting around us but we aren't using them.
This week, I want to talk about various aspects of the idea of a 'government wealth fund', highlighted in a powerful book called The Public Wealth Of Cities. This is a good introductory article to the potential we are missing. I'm very interested in what you think about it.
A relatively small increase in the return on public assets would contribute significantly to revenue that supports the public sector and hence lessens the need to raise taxes while increasing the likelihood of new investments in things such as infrastructure.