Public budgeting takes place at the national, state and local levels. As you have seen, many of the debates related to public budgets arise from fundamental presumptions about the role and limits of government. Likewise, many debates arise from presumptions about which level of government, federal, state or local has been appropriately authorized by the people and is in the best position to act in a given area. To the extent that budgets are ultimately the avenue through which governments act, these debates very quickly become public budgeting issues. This week we will explore issues of federalism and their effects on public budgeting.