State Policy Network
Week in Review: February 19, 2021


This week on

Spotlight on state legislative sessions: State think tanks working to improve education for students and their families

How Illinois Policy helped oust the longest-serving House speaker in US History

Success stories

Solutions from the states: This week’s policy briefs

Licensing Recognition for Telehealth Providers in Alaska
While lowering healthcare costs will take a multifaceted response, the Alaska Policy Forum notes one solution is to expand telemedicine services by granting recognition to out-of-state medical practitioners with licenses in good standing.

Criminal Justice Reform Recommendations for Wisconsin Policymakers (2021 Edition)
The Badger Institute offers criminal justice reforms that will decrease taxpayer expenditures and increase public safety.

Fund Students First: Now is the Right Time for Education Savings Accounts
With Ohio’s General Assembly embarking on the biennial budget process, The Buckeye Institute demonstrates why the state needs a student-first approach to education funding and how Education Savings Accounts can help Ohio better meet the needs of its students, teachers, and families.

Report: Economic Freedom Best Path to Make Kentucky Competitive Again 
A report released by the Bluegrass Institute for Public Policy Solutions looks back over the past 40 years to demonstrate how Kentucky has fallen short in creating the robust economic growth generated by competitor states. Bluegrass provides several recommendations to place the commonwealth on a path towards a whole new level of opportunity for Kentuckians.

Electricity in Michigan: A Primer 
A Mackinac Center primer shows how electricity is generated, transmitted, and used in Michigan.

Five Program Models For Reducing Recidivism
A new study from the Maryland Public Policy Institute seeks to build on existing “what works” literature regarding the success of recidivism reduction programs. It then applies qualitative analysis to five recidivism reduction programs with diverse approaches and circumstances to determine if those strategies are designed, implemented, and assessed to successfully rehabilitate inmates and reduce re-offense.

Safeguarding the Constitution During Times of Crisis
In a new study, the Nevada Policy Research Institute recommends the Nevada Legislature enact three amendments to the state’s Emergency Powers of the Governor Act.

Fiscal Analysis of Senate Bill 704: Oklahoma Taxpayers Could Save $137 Million
Oklahoma Senate Bill 704 is projected to safely reduce Oklahoma’s prison population by almost 1,400 people over the next 10 years and save the state at least $137 million by eliminating sentence enhancements for people convicted of nonviolent offenses, according to a fiscal analysis by the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs.

Rejecting Push to Restrict Gig Entrepreneurship Key to Driving Innovation, Economic Growth, Higher Incomes
Amid a renewed push in Congress and states to enact new “gig economy” restrictions following California’s controversial Assembly Bill 5, a new study released by the Pacific Research Institute finds that enacting these harmful laws would hinder innovation and restrict people’s ability to become entrepreneurs and provide for their families.

Death and Taxes: Nebraska’s Inheritance Tax 
A new study from the Platte Institute gives a historical perspective of Nebraska’s inheritance tax as well as a discussion of the economic implications of the tax.

Policy news from the states

Checking-in on legislative sessions


Energy and the environment

Government accountability


Jobs and state economies

State budgets and spending


Think tanks in the news

Events and Opportunities

Please see SPN’s Network Calendar for a full list of events.

Organization: State Policy Network