Phuong Nguyen, Assistant Professor in the School of Urban and Regional Planning and Social Science Researcher at the UI Public Policy Center, was awarded the "Distinguished Research and Development Award" by the International Association of Assessing Officers for his article, “Tax Limit Repeal and School Spending,” published in the National Tax Journal in March 2013.
Nguyen’s study is the first to evaluate the effects of repealing constitutional property tax levy limits on school spending. While several studies report that the imposition of tax limits constrains local government and school district spending, this study fails to reject the null hypotheses that tax limit repeal in New York State induced no significant immediate or gradual impact on the average spending of either all districts subject to tax limits or districts that were spending at their limits. The latter finding suggests that these “at limit” districts were not constrained by tax limits, either because the desired spending levels were exactly “at limit,” or because the limits were no longer binding after the districts utilized other non-property tax revenues such as state aid, especially from the supplemental Hurd aid program.
The Distinguished Research and Development Award is conferred on a nonprofit organization, education agency, private sector firm, public agency, or individuals for original research in property assessment, taxation, or mass appraisal techniques.
Nguyen’s research interests are in public finance and public policy in various sectors, including education, health and transportation in the United States and Vietnam. Recent research has included the fiscal effects of property tax limit repeal and budget referendums on school spending, education finance reform, school quality capitalization, and the benefits and costs of paratransit.