State Policy Network
Week in Review: October 15, 2021


This week on

Everything you need to know about regulatory sandboxes

How Iowa gave education opportunity to thousands of children in 2021

SPN State Job Report: Record number of job openings exceeds the number of unemployed Americans by 2.7 million

Is America in a ‘Cold Civil War’? Not at all.

Success Stories

Solutions from the states: This week’s policy briefs

Employment and the Safety Net During the Pandemic
A new report by the Badger Institute shows that while the state’s economy is rebounding, a disproportionate number of Wisconsin residents continue to use government safety net programs.

Red Hot: How Gov. Desantis Has Kicked Florida’s Economy into Overdrive
The Foundation for Government Accountability analyzed the policies that have led to the recent boom in Florida’s economy.

Here’s How IEA, NEA Unions Said They Spent Teachers’ Money in 2020
A report from the Illinois Policy Institute shows that most union spending does not go towards representing local teachers.

Research Brief: Ten Reasons Why Lawmakers Should Reject the Leandro Plan and Fund Students, Not Systems 
John Locke Foundation laid out ten reasons a proposal that would fund systems over students would be bad news for North Carolina.

The Missouri School Rankings Project
In response to the failure to provide adequate transparency by the state’s Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, Show-Me Institute released a new tool that ranks school performance in Missouri, giving each school a GPA and helping parents to compare education options.

Suspended Reality: The Impact of Suspension Policy on Student Safety
A new report from the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty found that reforms to the Milwaukee Public School’s disciplinary procedures have led to more students feeling unsafe in school.

Policy News from the States


Kentucky’s Black Elementary Students Really Left Behind in Reading and Math in 2021
Bluegrass Institute

ACT Indicates Many Fewer Kentucky Students Prepared for College
Bluegrass Institute

The FBI Should Not Threaten Parents
Empower Mississippi

Sunrise Sunsets ‘F’ Grade to Combat ‘Systemic Racism’
Freedom Foundation of Minnesota

The Pandemic Exposed the Flaws of One-Size-Fits-All Education
Frontier Institute

The Government Comes for Parents
John Locke Foundation

New School Choice Map Underscores Need for More Education Options in Maine
Maine Policy Institute

Transparent School Accountability is Critical to Louisiana’s Recovery
Pelican Institute for Public Policy

Election Integrity

Federalizing Elections Will Make Government Bigger and Voter’s Voices Smaller
Foundation For Government Accountability

A Brief History of Vote By Mail
Sutherland Institute

Government Accountability

We Must Prevent Government Malpractice
Alabama Policy Institute

School Board Candidate Surveys Informs Parents, Voters on Critical Education Issues
Idaho Freedom Foundation

Illinois Enacts Overdue First Step in Ethics Reform
Illinois Policy Institute

Understanding the Constitution: Constitutional Amendments Work
Independence Institute

Eight Reforms to Take Your Power Back
South Carolina Policy Council

Why The Judiciary Is So Distinct: It Was Designed to React, Not Initiate Action
Sutherland Institute

The Governor’s Hardline Vaccine Mandate…Offers Another Example of Why We Need Emergency Powers Reform
Washington Policy Center


Governor Whitmer is Standing in the Way of Health Professionals
Mackinac Center for Public Policy

Gov. Mills’ Mandate Threatens the Standard of Healthcare in Maine
Maine Policy Institute

Medicaid Expansion Leads to Higher Private Insurance Costs
Mississippi Center for Public Policy

Jobs and State Economies

Why Occupational Licensing Hurts Alaskans
Alaska Policy Forum

Extending Child Tax Credit Will Push Over a Million Working Parents Out of the Workforce
Center of the American Experiment

Excessive Regulation Hurts the Economy
Empower Mississippi

From Lemonade Stand to Franchise Owner: Bobby Maier
Foundation for Government Accountability

Raising the Gas Tax Could Decrease Consumer Spending
Mississippi Center for Public Policy

New Survey Shows Government Hurting Minority Small Business Recovery
Pacific Research Institute

Stalling Out: Jobs Report Shows People Leaving the Labor Force
Texas Public Policy Foundation

State Budgets and Spending

State Government Takes More Revenue from Citizens than Ever Before
Alabama Policy Institute

KYTC Awarded $16.5 Million in Single-Bid Contracts Exceeding Their Engineer’s Estimates in September
Bluegrass Institute

How are the Billions in Emergency Aid to New York Being Spent?
Empire Center

Most Hawaii Residents Want Lower Taxes, New Survey Shows
Grassroot Institute of Hawaii

Chicago May Hand $500 Monthly for a Year to 5,000 Low-Income Families
Illinois Policy Institute

New Report: 97% of ARPA Funds Not Spent
John Locke Foundation

The Untold Story of the Unspent Covid Dollars
Pacific Research Institute

Nebraska Has a Foreign Tax with a Local Impact
Platte Institute

What should Nebraska Do with More Federal Money?
Platte Institute

Here’s a Scary Halloween Idea: Restarting the Trolley
Show-Me Institute

Amplifying the Voice of the Taxpayer with Truth-in-Taxation
Tax Education Foundation – Iowa

Richland Makes it Nine WA Cities with Local Income Tax Bans
Washington Policy Center

Connecticut’s Budget: What to Expect in the Out Years
Yankee Institute

Workplace Freedom

Breaking: Fraud, Embezzlement, and Perjury at SEIU California
Freedom Foundation

What You Need to Know About Giving Unions Special Treatment In Illinois’ Constitution
Illinois Policy Institute


Big Broadband Threatens Local Providers
Bluegrass Institute

Calling Out Private Companies Won’t Fix Supply Chain Issues
Center Of The American Experiment

Portland Officials Need an Attitude Adjustment When it Comes to Violent Crimes
Cascade Policy Institute

Facial Recognition in Montana
Frontier Institute

Why Recidivism Rates are Dropping
Georgia Center for Opportunity

N.H.’s Top Ten Most Housing-Restricted Municipalities
Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy

Public Safety, Sentencing Reform Not Incompatible
Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs

Henry Clay and the Problem of Politics
Pegasus Institute

Bernat Olle Gets a Visa to Improve the World
Pioneer Institute

Think Tanks in the News

The Feds Need to Butt Out on Worker Freedom
Beacon Center of Tennessee in Real Clear Policy

Facts Don’t Mesh with More-Money Better-Education Myth
Bluegrass Institute in The Times Leader

Elizabeth Stelle: Covid Didn’t “Break” Parents
Commonwealth Foundation in Broad + Liberty

CF’s Jennifer Stefano Joins Charles Payne to Discuss President Biden’s Expensive Agenda
Commonwealth Foundation on Fox Business

The Dumbing Down of Expectations
Freedom Foundation of Minnesota in The National Review

Herd of Frivolous Lawsuits Stampedes Across Texas
Foundation for Government Accountability in Real Clear Policy

An Update on Telemedicine Laws and Regulations
Goldwater Institute on Regulatory Transparency Project’s Fourth Branch Podcast

Lawmakers OK Regulatory Sandbox Bill to Boost Innovation in NC Financial Sector
John Locke Foundation in Independent Tribune

Report: New Hampshire’s Housing Crisis Fueled by Restrictive Local Zoning
Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy in The Center Square

Striking Down Gov. Whitmer’s Emergency Powers Was Important First Step
Mackinac Center for Public Policy in Real Clear Policy

Mixed Messaging on Boosters Leaves Americans Dazed and Confused
Pacific Research Institute in Forbes

What “Everyday Low Prices” Can Teach Us About Health Care
Pacific Research Institute in The Glasgow Courier

Policy Researcher: Eliminating Oklahoma’s Income Tax Would Boost Economy
Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs in The Center Square

Iowa Proves It: Conservative Budgeting & Pro-Growth Policy Works
Tax Education Foundation – Iowa in The Political Insider

Antoni: “Transitory” Inflation Takes No Prisoners
Texas Public Policy Foundation in The Daily Caller

Sal Nuzzo: Policymakers, Keep Your Foot on the Gas…
The James Madison Institute in Florida Politics

The Government’s Secret ‘Google Search’ Warrant Tap
The James Madison Institute in Reason

Events and Opportunities

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

Organization: State Policy Network