County Payment Reform Ideas, and Analysis of Recent Proposals

Reform ideas for future county payments from Headwaters Economics as well analysis of proposals made in the House, Senate, and by the President.

  • County Payments are important because they way payments are funded and distributed ranks among the most important policy decisions affecting local government budgets, economic opportunities related to public lands and how federal lands are managed.
  • We analyze various potential reforms to better understand the impacts on counties and citizens, especially in rural communities.
  • We provide data and statistics on county payments, commercial activities on federal lands, and local economic profiles that describe the history, context, and future of county payments.

Federal land payments to counties and states—or “county payments”—provide compensation for non-taxable federal land. Headwaters Economics studies the fiscal, economic, and policy issues related to county payments.

County Payment Reform

Policy Reform Ideas

Policy reform proposals should address the how PILT, agency payments, and land management can work together to provide stable and predictable compensation to counties, create job opportunities in line with today’s economy, and improve forest health.