One of the most politically challenging, and politically assailable,
decisions a legislator can make is a vote increasing legislative pay.
Yet, with legislative pay a mere pittance in most states, increasing it
is necessary to prevent wealth from becoming a prerequisite to
hold public office.
If states won't raise the revenue needed for local needs, the least
they can do is let those cities and towns tax themselves. At least
that's the proposal by Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick, who this week proposed eliminating some of the restrictions
that prevent Boston and other towns from...
When you hear the term "smart growth" what comes to mind?
Anti-sprawl? Open-space preservation? Often overlooked in discussions of smart growth policies is the need
for affordable housing as a key component of growth planning.
To the embarassment of a country with leaders that bill themselves as
supporting "family values," a new report by the
Project on Global Working Families finds that US federal policies are some
of the least supportive of families in the world.
Well, the feds have done it again. They've stepped in
where states are doing good work and messed things up. In an effort
to prevent illegal immigrants from enrolling in Medicaid, new federal citizenship
are instead causing US citizens
to lose coverage and...
Washington State legislators are doing a one-two-three punch to get
big money out of election campaigns. House
Bill 1360, Senate
Bill 5278 and Senate
Bill 5226 were introduced in January to adopt public financing for
In a breaking story today, the Wall
Street Journal ($) reports that Wal-Mart has been setting up shell companies
to purchase property through a REIT investment vehicle, then renting those
buildings to Wal-Mart stores-- allowing the company to deduct the cost of the
rent from state taxes in ...
In Washington State, a Budget & Policy
Center brief finds that the concentration of exploitive payday lending
storefronts costs low-income state residents $155 million compared to the
alternatives increasingly available in other states. The brief
includes maps of where paylend lending...
As the first month of the 2007 legislative session comes to a close,
expanding access to health care is clearly a top priority for governors
and legislative leaders across the country. From comprehensive health care for all in California and Pennsylvania to incremental cover all kids