This weekly round-up shares the latest news about what the Network is doing to promote state-based solutions that will improve the lives of families, workers, and local communities. If you are an SPN member and have an update you’d like us to include in next week’s round-up, please email us at email@example.com (all submissions are subject to SPN approval).
- The Yankee Institute announced Frank Ricci joined the team as a Senior Strategist.
This week on SPN.org
Communications Case Study
Alabama Policy Institute calls attention to Alabama’s poor education system through #Deadlast campaign
Libertas Institute protects digital privacy
Utah puts Americans, not government, in charge of digital data
A win for transparency: A bill requiring state and local government to continue fulfilling Right-to-Know requests under the Pennsylvania Open Records law during emergency declarations became law this week. The Commonwealth Foundation added that though lawmakers achieved a significant victory, they have much more to do to keep the governor in check.
Solutions from the states: This week’s policy briefs
Allergic to Accountability: Minnesota’s public schools have little to show for decades of increased spending
Center of the American Experiment
Government Collective Bargaining Transparency Important for Public Trust
Washington Policy Center
Washington school district officials misled voters about the true cost of school construction bonds on the 2020 ballot
Washington Policy Center
No High-Performing School Options for 40,000 Wisconsin Students in 134 Zip Codes
Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty
Policy news from the states
- The Bluegrass Institute highlighted the Barren Academy of Virtual and Expanded Learning, or BAVEL—an online school in Kentucky, for their excellence in providing distance learning.
- The Cardinal Institute of West Virginia called on Governor Justice to extend the deadline for students and parents to apply for charter schools.
- In The Federalist, Commonwealth Foundation’s Colleen Hroncich highlighted legislation in Pennsylvania that would establish “Back on Track” accounts to send CARES Act funding to eligible families for education expenses.
- With more Mississippi parents considering homeschooling, Mississippi Center for Public Policy outlined how easy it is to get started and tailor curriculum to what families value. The Center is also sharing these stories to show how homeschool has made education choice and freedom a reality for more families.
- Pioneer Institute advocated that we “be there for students” by providing two examples of schools that are well-equipped for education during the pandemic.
- The Pelican Institute noted Louisiana can learn from South Carolina’s Safe Access to Flexible Education (SAFE) grant plan.
- A coalition of state-based think tanks, led by Alaska Policy Forum, launched the national education campaign Protect My Ballot. The campaign details the harmful consequences of an electoral scheme known as Ranked Choice Voting (RCV).
- Civitas Institute highlighted a problem with touchscreen voting machines.
- On an episode of Overcaffeinated, the Beacon Center of Tennessee interviewed Carey Bringle, owner of Peg Leg Porker restaurant in Nashville, about the difficulties of owning a business during the pandemic and amid cancel culture.
- Cascade Policy Institute criticized a new law that prohibits landlords from evicting tenants due to nonpayment.
- The Foundation for Government Accountability listed three reasons to let the unemployment insurance boost expire.
- In California, the Freedom Foundation is taking to the billboards to highlight the unfairness and economic hardship small business owners face as a result of state government’s ever-expanding emergency powers.
- Illinois Policy Institute pointed out how the coronavirus and associated government lockdowns disproportionately harmed women with children at home.
- Pacific Research Institute called for businesses to be able to issue tax-free-debt as a way to inject money into the economy.
- The Maine Policy Institute launched a seven-part series examining the history of the COVID-19 pandemic, its impact on Maine, and what data policymakers used to lock down society.
- The Washington Policy Center launched a bold marketing plan, Free Markets Destroy, to attract 18-34 year-olds to the revolutionary power free markets have to overcome pollution, poverty, and many other social and economic struggles. Watch this video and visit the campaign website to learn more about WPC’s approach.
- The California Policy Center pointed out how the state’s public-sector unions rake in $921 million in annual revenue.
- The Maryland Public Policy Institute highlighted the dangers of public sector unions with several recent examples.
- According to Reason Foundation’s findings, several states make it impossible to revoke taxpayer-funded pensions from public officials who have been convicted.
- The Buckeye Institute’s Robert Alt appeared before the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit to present oral arguments in its case Thompson v. MEA calling for an immediate end to laws that force public-sector employees to accept a union’s exclusive representation.
- The Caesar Rodney Institute reviewed the EPA’s new “Fuel Economy Standards” and concludes it is a win all around for the environment, the consumer, and the automotive industry.
- The Center of the American Experiment held an event on crime, race, and policing in America.
- Empire Center noted how New York has widened its lead in per-capita spending on Medicaid.
- Independence Institute delivered 197,000 signatures to the Colorado Secretary of State’s office to get their #RealFairTax cut on the ballot this fall. The initiative will ask voters to lower the flat income tax rate from 4.63% to 4.55%.
- The John Locke Foundation argued the North Carolina Governor offered an unconvincing case for requiring masks.
- John Locke Foundation joined with the North Carolina Advocates for Justice to submit an amicus brief in Apex v. Rubin, a case that seeks to restore the property rights of Beverly Rubin. The brief argues that Rubin fell victim to an unconstitutional use of “quick-take” eminent domain authority when the town of Apex, North Carolina, installed a sewer line across her property.
- The Mackinac Center noted persuasion, education, and reputation are more powerful than executive orders.
- Mississippi Center for Public Policy and the Center Square teamed up for a powerful op-ed on the importance of protecting the privacy of donors to non-profit organizations.
Think Tanks in the News
- The Alabama Policy Institute highlighted how there’s a legal storm on the horizon for businesses, churches, hospitals, and nonprofits.
- Beacon Center of Tennessee shared the story of a business owner affected by higher taxes and cancel culture.
- In The Philadelphia Inquirer, Commonwealth Foundation presented three steps to ensure Pennsylvania’s private and Catholic school students can go back to class.
- Ethan Allen Institute argued that if public schools can’t deliver, their budgets need to fund alternatives.
- The Georgia Public Policy Foundation asserted that public education that prioritizes self-preservation over students must change.
- In Newsday, the Illinois Policy Institute noted public pensions are at risk of insolvency.
- In the Washington Examiner, the James Madison Institute argued big tech antitrust investigations should focus on consumer welfare.
- The Kansas Policy Institute considered the benefits of competency-based education, where students progress at their own pace and can work on appropriate content regardless of age.
- The Mississippi Center for Public Policy explained why the long-term financial stability of the Public Employees’ Retirement System of Mississippi could be at risk.
- The Nevada Policy Research Institute pointed out the Nevada Legislature has a separation of powers problem.
- The Pioneer Institute examined the significance of the Espinoza decision.
- The Thomas Jefferson Institute was cited for their input on how Virginia should handle the economic situation of the pandemic.
- The Washington Policy Center underscored Seattle’s need for entrepreneurs and small businesses to revitalize the economy.
- The Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty shared insight on how schools will use CARES funding.
Virtual Events & Opportunities
School at Home: The Educational Options In Michigan This Fall
Mackinac Center | August 11, 2020