This Week on SPN.org
Iowa removes barriers to jobs and economic opportunity through occupational licensing reform
Tax Education Foundation of Iowa helps reform onerous occupational licensing regulations.
Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty surveys parents’ reactions to virtual learning during the pandemic
Through a recent survey of parents in the state, WILL learned education reforms are needed now more than ever.
What will the future of education look like?
State think tanks share trends, attitudes, and ideas on what education could look like in the fall and beyond.
The overlooked potential of state AGs for police reform
SPN Executive Vice President Tony Woodlief’s op-ed at Governing
Stories from the states: American livelihoods hurt by economic lockdowns
State think tanks share stories of Americans struggling to keep jobs, businesses, and livelihoods afloat.
Five questions about ESG investing
The Heritage Foundation’s Diane Katz answers key questions about social, environmental, and governance (ESG) investing.
Tennessee is one step closer to preserving Right-to-Work. A supermajority of the Tennessee House of Representatives passed a resolution which would put Right-to-Work in the state Constitution. In Right-to-Work states, workers in cannot be compelled to join a union and pay dues as a condition of employment. The Beacon Center has been encouraging policymakers to pass this reform, explaining how it would benefit Tennesseans. The next General Assembly, which starts next January, must now pass the amendment by a two-thirds majority.
Louisiana passed a law that reforms the state budget to rein in reckless spending. The Pelican Institute has been calling for fiscal reforms like these and noted it’s a major win for policies to Get Louisiana Working.
The Iowa Legislature passed historic
occupational licensing reform. Tax Education Foundation of Iowa has been
encouraging policymakers to take this step, explaining how it would
expand economic opportunity for workers and make Iowa a place where more people
want to live and do business.
Solutions from the states:
This week’s policy briefs
Poll: 70% of Alabamians Want a Special Session and Support API’s RESTORE Alabama Plan
Alabama Policy Institute
Coronavirus, the Economy, and Taxes: An Alaska Opinion Survey
Alaska Policy Forum
State think tanks respond to police force and racial injustice
- Commonwealth Foundation’s Director of West Pennsylvania, Lenny McAllister, spoke with Vice President Mike Pence at a listening roundtable on race, faith, and community in Pittsburgh. Lenny spoke to the vice president about free-market public policies that can close the gap between white and black Americans.
- On Supertalk Mississippi radio, Empower Mississippi discussed the current criminal justice reform bills under consideration in the Mississippi Legislature.
- The Georgia Public Policy Foundation offered policy ideas that will enhance accountability for law enforcement while respecting the difficult nature of the work required of the position.
- The John Locke Foundation explained why defunding the police is a bad idea.
- The Mackinac Center explained how police disciplinary processes are skewed to protect bad cops. Mackinac is developing model legislation to remove these provisions from police collective bargaining agreements and local policies.
- The Mississippi Center for Public Policy listed the new criminal justice reform measures taking shape in the Mississippi Legislature.
- The Pegasus Institute hosted Dr. OJ Oleka, founder of the Anti-Racism Kentucky coalition, on their podcast. The discussion touched on why conservatives should lead on anti-racism. In Kentucky Today, Pegasus asserted “defund the police” proposals only hurt the search for real solutions.
Research & Initiatives
- With fewer students and huge deficits likely, the Badger Institute noted the University of Wisconsin should consider closing some campuses and following online model for certain courses.
- The Beacon Center listed three reasons why Tennessee should embrace telemedicine.
- Center of the American Experiment considered how the American economy is coping with the coronavirus.
- Civitas Institute outlined four reasons why pausing school choice is a bad idea.
- Empower Mississippi launched a new tool to help families in search of education options. The Mississippi School Finder offers users a complete picture of public, private, and alternative education options available in their communities.
- Georgia Center for Opportunity shared a story on local businesses that are helping workers and feeding the hungry during the pandemic.
- To spur more jobs and prosperity for local families, the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii encouraged Hawaii leaders to cut taxes and red tape.
- Goldwater Institute listed three things parents need to know about school reopenings.
- Illinois Policy Institute revealed Illinois jobs are returning, but not for minority workers.
- The Kansas Policy Institute highlighted how school officials top the list of Kansas Public Employees Retirement System (KPERS) “millionaires”— people who will collect at least $1 million in pension benefits during their first 20 years of retirement.
- As Oklahomans head to the ballot box to decide whether or not to expand Medicaid, the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs pointed out that children will not receive more coverage under expansion.
- To fully recover from the coronavirus, the Palmetto Promise Institute argued South Carolina must maintain and expand education choices.
- The Pioneer Institute launched a hotline that allows the public to report violations of open meeting laws.
- The Washington Policy Center noted the Washington Governor’s actions to freeze some state employee pay and implement furloughs is a good start, but more needs to be done. The state is facing nearly a $9 billion drop in projected revenue through 2023. WPC encouraged state policymakers to eliminate new spending increases and ask federal officials to provide flexibility for CARES Act funding.
Think Tanks in the News
- Fox News Online highlighted one of The Buckeye Institute’s three cases to immediately end laws that force public-sector employees to accept a union’s exclusive representation. Buckeye’s case representing Professor Jonathan Reisman is currently pending with the US Supreme Court.
- Commonwealth Foundation explained the Pennsylvania General Assembly’s justification for passing a concurrent resolution to end the Pennsylvania Governor’s COVID-19 disaster declaration.
- The Freedom Foundation criticized the Washington Governor’s order that fines businesses if they violate the stay-at-home order.
- In the Star-Ledger, the Garden State Initiative asserted borrowing is not the answer to New Jersey’s $10 billion problem.
- The Goldwater Institute highlighted how red tape is tying our hands in the fight against the coronavirus.
- The James Madison Institute pointed out how Florida’s certificate-of-need laws prevented a Naples-based ambulance company from helping its community.
- In The Hill, the Mackinac Center pointed out how governors are invoking science to justify vastly different reopening policies.
- In the Washington Examiner, the Pacific Research Institute argued extending generous unemployment benefits will drag out the economic crisis.
- The Pelican Institute highlighted how digital technology enabled businesses and entrepreneurs to reach new customers during the coronavirus.
- Despite the claims of several viral posts around the internet, we have not defunded education. The Reason Foundation examined this claim in an op-ed in the Washington Examiner, finding that school funding has actually risen 280% since 1980.
- Texas Public Policy Foundation argued shutting down the economy was a cure worse than the disease.
- The Thomas Jefferson Institute considered who will end up paying the rent and utility bills Virginia customers can delay paying because of the coronavirus crisis.
Virtual Events &
Center for Education Reform: Driving Charter School Graduate Success
June 23, 2020
John Locke Foundation: Education Flash Point: School Funding Ruling Could Spark Constitutional & Fiscal Crisis
June 22, 2020
John Locke Foundation: Carolina Rebound Virtual Town Hall: Health Care
July 1, 2020
Pioneer Institute:Digital Schooling During COVID-19 and Beyond
June 24, 2020