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After years of prosperity, tough times have returned for state budgets. But there is an upside. Today's downturn presents an opportunity to attack both the current crisis and the longstanding structural problems that hobble government operations. Instead of producing "Quick fixes," tough times should be a catalyst for deeper changes that improve long-term prosperity and withstand unpredictable budget cycles and shifting demographics. Fiscal hardship, though unpleasant, can open the door to innovation that would rarely happen during times of prosperity. This Deloitte paper presents seven steps states can take today to seize the opportunity to tackle longstanding structural problems that leave state budgets vulnerable to economic swings and shortchange both taxpayers and benefit recipients.
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