Fiscal First Aid Resource Center

A financial crisis can take many forms:

  • A major local employer lays off much of its workforce.
  • Property values plummet due to a shrinking population in the area.
  • A natural disaster inflicts significant infrastructure damage.
  • A mass-quarantine halts economic activity.
  • A cyberattack shuts down online commerce.

Any of these events would likely cause significant financial distress for even the best-prepared local governments. Whether they lead to increased expenditures, decreased revenue, or a combination of both, the effect is the same: the local government finds itself without enough money to do everything that people expect it to get done. GFOA has put together this set of resources to help local government finance officers facing these types of situations. The centerpiece is a 12-step process we call Fiscal First Aid: Recovering from Financial Distress. Use the following diagram to navigate through the different steps of the financial recovery process. 

12-Step Fiscal First Aid Recovery Process


GFOA Research


Economic Indicators Dashboard




Upcoming Training


Past Training

Click on each webinar to access a recording of the webinar, the PowerPoint presentation, and other supporting materials.


Free Limited-Time Offers from Third-Party Firms

In order to get as many good Fiscal First Aid resources to GFOA members as quickly as possible, GFOA is working with private sector firms that have graciously agreed to provide their expertise free of charge. Please be aware that there is no financial relationship between these firms and GFOA. Also, GFOA does not endorse any products or services. 


Government Finance Review GFOA Research



An Elected Officials Guide to Fiscal First Aid

An Elected Official's Guide to Fiscal First Aid and Financial Recovery aims to help public officials navigate through these challenging economic times. The booklet covers three basic stages of financial recovery:

  • Bridging - getting through the immediate crisis and creating breathing room to make more sustainable reforms.
  • Reform - carrying out the short-term recovery plan and developing and implementing long-term therapies.
  • Transform - institutionalization of long-term financial planning and becoming more resistant to financial distress and adaptable to a changing environment.


Related GFOA Resources


Related Third-Party Resources


Additional Questions

For additional questions, comments, or to particpate in GFOA research or training on fiscal first aid, please contact GFOA at 


GFOA's Coronavirus Response Resource Page

GFOA's Coronavirus Response Resources reflect the latest guidance and materials on the recently enacted laws passed in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The programs and funding were included in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). Given the fluid nature in the release of guidance and implementation of the various programs, this page will be updated frequently as we strive to provide the most accurate and up-to-date information. Click here to learn more.