The ratio of the total volume of taxes coming from the territory to the budget system of the country and the expenses of the territorial budget illustrates the fundamental possibility or impossibility of forming intergovernmental relations in the spirit of fiscal federalism. The article tests its initial message: tax and non-tax revenues produced by the territory (given the administrative-territorial division of the country) should be, at minimum, sufficient to balance the budget and solve regional budget problems. It is shown that at present in 40% of Russian regions total revenues are enough to ensure budget surplus, the participation of these regions in solving national problems. In the remaining 60% of the regions, all revenues from the territory to the budget system are not able to balance budget revenues and expenses. The picture of intergovernmental relations was fundamentally changed, because in most regions that had deficit budgets in 2015, revenues in 2018 began to exceed expenses. The paper considers the opportunities to qualitatively change the state of regional budgets.