WASHINGTON — Economists have raised their estimates for economic growth in 2011, but they have mixed views on whether the unemployment rate will come down. While an improved economy should bode well for state and local governments, most will still face severe budget problems, particularly with the loss of federal stimulus funds.

Economists have become more optimistic about the economy, with the Federal Reserve buying Treasuries through June 2011 and the new tax law extending Bush-era tax cuts for two years.

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