Whitney Afonso is an Associate Professor at the School of Government at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She was recently awarded the Diversity Impact Award for her work on examining Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) uptake differentials in communities of color and rural communities.
Whitney is a member of the Executive Committee for the Association for Budgeting and Financial Management (ABFM). Whitney was awarded the Jesse Burkhead Award for best article published in Public Budgeting & Finance in 2015. It was for her article “Leviathan or Flypaper: Earmarked Local Sales Taxes for Transportation.” Whitney also joined the Public Budgeting & Finance Editorial Board in 2023. She joined the Journal of Public Administration and Theory‘s Board of Editors in 2022.
Whitney teaches within the Carolina MPA program as well as working with local practitioners across the state of North Carolina. Her work focuses on state and local tax policy with an emphasis on local sales taxes. Whitney is also an Academic Fellow at the Kenan Institute’s Tax Center.
In her engaged scholarship and work with practitioners she runs a week long course for budget practitioners, Budgeting in Local Government. In that role she co-manages the Death & Taxes blog. She also published a textbook for budget practitioners at the local level titled “Budgeting in North Carolina Local Governments” that is currently in its second edition. Whitney is currently working the North Carolina’s Office of State Budget and Management and is creating a state level certification program for budget professionals. It is scheduled to be offered starting in 2024.
Examples of recent work:
“Revisiting the Theory of Revenue Diversification: Insights from an Empirical Analysis of Municipal Budgetary Solvency” with Benedict Jimenez. 2022. Public Budgeting & Finance 42(2): 196-220.
“The Adoption of Local Option Fuel Taxes: Evidence From Florida Counties” with Can Chen. 2021. Public Budgeting & Finance 41(1): 51-75. (Article)
“Can Employee Training Influence Local Fiscal Outcomes?” with Luke Spreen and Ed Gerrish. 2020. American Review of Public Administration 50(4): 401–414. (Article)
“The Barriers Created by Complexity: A State by State Analysis of Local Sales Tax Laws in Light of the Wayfair Ruling” 2019. National Tax Journal 72(4): 777-800. (Article)
“Ethics by Design: The Impact of Form of Government on Municipal Corruption” with Kim Nelson. 2019. Public Administration Review 79(4): 591-600. (Article)