Next time we hear from local governments about their budget problems, direct them to this excellent column from Robert Samuelson of Newsweek. The heart of the matter:
"Congress might have done more by providing large, temporary block grants to states and localities and letting them decide how to spend the money. Instead, the stimulus provides most funds through specific programs. There's $90 billion more for Medicaid, $12 billion for special education, $2.8 billion for various policing programs. More power is being centralized in Washington."