State Policy Network
Week in Review: March 26, 2021


This week on

SPN State Job Report: Lingering job losses concentrated in leisure and hospitality sector

Hamish Brewer, award winning principal and education entrepreneur, to headline session at SPN’s 29th Annual Meeting

Homeschool laws: Which states are supporting parental choice?

Telehealth: Explained

Success stories

Solutions from the states: This week’s policy briefs

Acres of Opportunity: Education in Rural Tennessee
A new report from the Beacon Center of Tennessee highlights how rural areas have struggled to provide the same education opportunities as urban areas. However, Beacon notes there is hope on the horizon for rural education: innovative education models, enhanced student-based funding, and legislative changes at the state and school board levels to remove regulatory barriers would allow rural students to obtain the education that best suits their unique needs.

Improving Ohio Health Care with Freedom
In a new paper, The Buckeye Institute demonstrates the benefits of expanding access to telehealth and lifting unnecessary licensing restrictions on medical professionals. In making these modest reforms, policymakers can make healthcare more accessible, particularly for elderly Ohioans and those in living in rural areas. 

Putting Patients First: Unleashing Innovation in American Healthcare
A new report from the Goldwater Institute provides a blueprint for dismantling the obstacles that stifle innovation, so that patients will get rapid, informed, and high-quality care. Goldwater lays out a plan for reforming the healthcare system—with model legislation that we will pursue in all 50 states and at the federal level to help make reform into reality.

Wisconsin State, Local Leaders Should Refund Federal Money Back to State Taxpayers
The recently passed American Rescue Plan will allocate over $5.7 billion to Wisconsin state, county, and local governments to spend to help mitigate the impact of the coronavirus. A new report from the Institute for Reforming Government encourages state and local leaders to consider refunding this money back to Wisconsin families, as families know best on how COVID-19 and the corresponding shutdowns of schools and businesses have impacted them, and what their critical needs are to return to “normal.”

Expanding Rural Broadband Access in North Carolina
A new paper from the John Locke Foundation highlights the three most pressing issues impeding broadband infrastructure and deployment in North Carolina and offers recommendations for reform.

Sticker Shock: Maine’s Burdensome Vehicle Inspection Mandate
An analysis from the Maine Policy Institute draws on decades of motor vehicle accident and fatality data from across the country to conclude Maine’s 90-year-old vehicle inspection program has outlived its usefulness and fails to deliver its intended results.

Bridging the Final Gaps: Policy Paths for Broadband Deployment in Florida
A new report by The James Madison Institute outlines the principles and policies that have made Florida a leader in enabling broadband expansion and examines how the state should continue to build on its past and current success to expand reliable, affordable broadband access for all Floridians.

Defense Department Audit Report Card 2021
With this report, Truth in Accounting ranks Department of Defense (DoD) component entities based on their fiscal year (FY) 2020 audit performance. Truth in Accounting issues this ranking to identify relative strengths and weaknesses in financial reporting, to track progress over time, and to identify agency leaders who serve as good examples for the department as a whole.

Policy news from the states

Checking in on legislative sessions

Legislative Session: Week Six at the State House
Alabama Policy Institute

Legislative Win Brings New Hope
Cardinal Institute for West Virginia Policy

Idaho Senators Side With Education Special Interests Against Parents and Students
Idaho Freedom Foundation

First: The Good Bills of 2021
Rio Grande Foundation

The Worst Bills of 2021 New Mexico Legislative Session (That Passed)
Rio Grande Foundation

WAVotes NEWS: State House and Senate Democrats Release Transportation Budget Proposals. “Cap-and-Trade” Climate Change Bill Clears Senate Committee.
Washington Policy Center


Reopening Update: UTLA Tries To Outscience the CDC
California Policy Center

Learning Pods: The Newest Parent-Led Innovation
Cardinal Institute for West Virginia Policy

Every Student Deserves Access to a Quality Education
Cascade Policy Institute

Get Creative with Federal Education Dollars
Mackinac Center for Public Policy

Data From Open Schools Affirm Maine’s Are Safe to Reopen
Maine Policy Institute

Debunking the Myths Surrounding School Choice
Tax Education Foundaation of Iowa

MPS Plan Lacks Urgency, Prevents Most High School Students from Returning
Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty


Telemedicine: Embrace the Future
Cardinal Institute for West Virginia Policy

Former Hawaii Doctor Tells Why He Moved to the Mainland
Grassroot Institute of Hawaii

One Simple Way To Expand Health Care Freedom
MacIver Institute

Pharmacists Play Pivotal Role in Fighting the Pandemic
The Buckeye Institute

Government Accountability

One Year Later, Let’s Restore Government to its Proper Role
Beacon Center of Tennessee

Emergency Powers Are Not Limitless
The Buckeye Institute

Sunshine Week, A Vital Disinfectant in Pandemic and Always
Georgia Public Policy Foundation

How Asset Forfeiture Undermines Government’s Legitimacy
Goldwater Institute

When Will Gov. Whitmer Relinquish Unilateral Control of Michigan Society?
Mackinac Center for Public Policy

Jobs and state economies

Removing the Lower Rung of the Ladder: A Higher Minimum Wage Doesn’t Help Those Who Invariably Will Lose Their Jobs
Badger Institute

The State of Minnesota’s Economy: 2020
Center of the American Experiment

Feb. 2021 Jobs Report: Despite Some Gains in Jobs, NJ Still Has a Long Way To Go
Garden State Initiative

Why Raising Taxes on the Wealthy Hurts Everyone in Hawaii
Grassroot Institute of Hawaii

Michigan Should Consider A ‘Regulatory Sandbox’
Mackinac Center for Public Policy

Tax Reform Will Grow Louisiana Jobs and Kickstart the Economy
Pelican Institute for Public Policy

Pandemic Relief Bill Shouldn’t Hinder States on Tax Relief
Sutherland Institute

Recently Published Hospitality Job Loss Data Shows Washington is Ranked 9th Worse in the Nation
Washington Policy Center

State budgets and spending

Beshear’s Veto Indicates ‘State of Denial’ About Teachers’ Retirement System Woes
Bluegrass Institute

Capitol Watch: New Walz Budget Still Raises Taxes
Center of the American Experiment

Supplemental Appropriations
Commonwealth Foundation

Cuomo Pushes Budget Change Sought by Hospital Group Implicated in Pandemic Scandals
Empire Center for Public Policy

Albany’s Soak-the-Rich Push Ignores the Large Grain of SALT
Empire Center for Public Policy

New York Spends More than All Other States on Education and Medicaid
Empire Center for Public Policy

Union Pension Bailouts
Ethan Allen Institute

Grassroot Institute CEO Denounces House Budget Plan as ‘Irresponsible’
Grassroot Institute of Hawaii

Locke Experts: Cooper’s Latest Budget Plan Spends Too Much, Takes Aim at Parents’ Educational Choices
John Locke Foundation

Marylanders Concerned about State’s Ability to Fund State Employee Pensions
Maryland Public Policy Institute

Five Smart Ways to Use Nebraska’s Federal Relief Money
Platte Institute

Think tanks in the news

House Bill 249 Amounts to Slimy Fat in a Slippery Pot, a Testament to Corporate Cronyism
Bluegrass Institute in Kentucky Forward

Ohio’s Pandemic Year Report Card 
The Buckeye Institute in The Lima News

Democrats Make Low-Tax States an Offer They Should Refuse 
The Buckeye Institute in The Hill

An Economist’s View: Stop Taxing to Support More Spending in St. Paul
Center of the American Experiment in the Duluth News Tribune

Support Emergency Powers Amendment to Restore Transparency in State Government
Commonwealth Foundation in the York Dispatch

Parents Need Educational Options Now More Than Ever
Commonwealth Foundation in Townhall

Pennsylvania Voters Can Help Restore Transparency
Commonwealth Foundation in Lancaster Online

New York Needs to Release Its Covid Data
Empire Center in The Wall Street Journal

NY Officials Covered Up More Than Just Nursing-Home Deaths
Empire Center in The New York Post

The New Dream for Vermont Agriculture
Ethan Allen Institute in Vermont Biz

11 Years Of ACA/ObamaCare, 11 Years Of Rising Costs
Foundation for Government Accountability in Forbes

Don’t Expect Any State Flexibility Under Obama 2.0
Foundation for Government Accountability in RealClearHealth

The Unions Are Hemorrhaging Members. Thanks, Janus
Freedom Foundation in National Review

LA Teacher Sues Union Over Call to Defund Police
Freedom Foundation on Fox & Friends

New Federal Dollars Shouldn’t Be Used To Stimulate Government Growth
Georgia Public Policy Foundation in the Daily Citizen-News

Illinois Should Join Multistate Nurse Licensure Compact
Illinois Policy Institute in the Chicago Sun-Times

Utah Should Not Expand the Government’s Role in Censoring Free Speech
Libertas Institute in the Deseret News

How Utah Aims to Help Businesses Flourish After Pandemic
Libertas Institute in US News & World Report

The Government Didn’t Create the COVID-19 Vaccines
Pacific Research Institute in the Sentinel & Enterprise

Obamacare’s 11th Anniversary Is Nothing to Celebrate
Pacific Research Institute in Newsmax

New Mexico Students and Parents Need School Choice Now
Rio Grande Foundation in KRWG Media

Too Much Easy Money Leads to Trouble
Show-Me Institute in The American Spectator

Gov. Reynolds Should Reject Federal COVID Relief Money
Tax Education Foundation in the Globe Gazette

Events & Opportunities

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

Categories: News
Organization: State Policy Network