Americans continue to have more confidence in levels of government that are closer to home, even as trust in state and local government has taken a hit since 2020, leaving views of local government at one of the lowest levels on record, according to a recent Gallup survey.
Most Americans trust their state governments, at 57%, to handle problems in their area, and even more, or 66%, express confidence in local governments. That’s a big improvement over the 39% who say they trust the federal government.
Gallup notes that confidence in local government has topped that for state government since 2008. 2009 marked a record low for confidence in state government, “when most states had to raise taxes or make cuts to mitigate budget shortfalls during the Great Recession.”
Meanwhile, trust in local government is at its lowest since 1997, though there were two lower readings in the 1970s.
As previously reported, the federal government incorporated lessons learned during the Great Recession to address the COVID-19 downturn, helping state and local governments get aid directly to where they deemed necessary much more quickly.