JLF Research Archive
Showing items 1 to 25 of 535
North Carolina’s tax code penalizes savings and investment by double taxing their returns— specifically interest, dividends, and capital gains. These biases can only be eliminated by removing savings and investment from the tax base, or by eliminating the returns to saving; for example abolishing the taxation of capital gains.
The Tax Foundation estimates that, once all reforms are fully phased in, North Carolina’s overall business tax climate ranking will be 13th best in the country. According to the 2016 index, North Carolina is now ranked as the 15th most attractive business tax climate.
Model Resolution on Regulatory Overcriminalization
In the last two years, academics and scholars of public policy have identified North Carolina as a state with an overly
complex criminal code that can ensnare small businesses, farmers, and individuals who unknowingly fail to comply
with regulatory rules. In 2014, Professor Jeff Welty of the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Government published an article
in the North Carolina Law Review, “Overcriminalization in North Carolina”; and James Copland and Isaac Gorodetski,
directors respectively of the Center for Legal Policy and the Center for State and Local Leadership at the Manhattan
Institute for Policy Research, published a primer, “Overcriminalizing the Old North State.”
The John Locke Foundation has a long-standing interest in the Map Act, which we have criticized for being “inefficient, unfair, and unnecessary.” We have repeatedly urged the General Assembly to repeal or reform it. We have also taken a keen interest in Kirby v. NCDOT and in the legal and constitutional issues that it raises.
This paper therefore proposes a state-based REINS Act as a key sunrise provision to prevent adding unnecessary and harmful regulations to the state’s regulatory burden. It describes aspects of a REINS Act for North Carolina.
This report is an attempt to identify the scope and cost of regulations in the state of North Carolina. The state’s record is mixed in terms of regulatory burden. One prominent index ranks North Carolina fifth in the nation when it comes to business friendliness. In contrast, the John Locke Foundation’s “First in Freedom Index” ranks North Carolina 36th in “regulatory freedom.”
This study surveys North Carolina’s most populous cities and examines how each conducts economic development in its jurisdiction. Collectively, they entered into 238 economic development contracts worth more than $65 million over the five-year period. Actual payments, however, totaled $20.2 million.
For fiscal year 2015-16, the General Fund budget will rise 3.1 percent to $21.7 billion, below the combined rates of population growth and inflation. The following year, the budget will have an overall increase of less than one-percent.
By The Numbers provides information on how much local government costs in every city and county in North Carolina.
The ACA focuses on expanding coverage through a massive redistribution of wealth in the amount of $1.2 trillion over the next decade. It’s clear that low-income individuals and those with chronic conditions benefit the most from the law’s sliding scale subsidies, but market-oriented tactics can make health insurance (and more importantly medical care) more accessible and affordable and can lessen the risk for insurers to experience adverse selection.
Between FY 2009 and FY 2014, 81 out of North Carolina’s 100 counties participated in economic development activities. Counties entered into 776 contracts worth nearly $284 million in incentives over the five-year period. Actual payments, however, totaled $144 million.
A reverse logroll for the 2015-17 biennium budget would greatly benefit taxpayers, leaving surpluses of approximately $383 million in the first year and $639 million in the second year. This allows lawmakers more flexibility to lower taxes or fund other priorities.
A report circulated among lawmakers by the NC Sustainable Energy Association argues that renewables are not the source of rising electricity bills in the state. However, the report's problems are myriad.
State leaders should cut through the noise of tailored industry reports and seek a thorough, comprehensive study of North Carolina energy policy, bearing in mind that ratepayers' chief interest is least-cost, reliable power at the flip of the switch.
What the healthcare industry needs is a strong dose of disruptive innovation — relaxing regulations that will increase provider competition, force downward pressure on costs, and enhance patient choice. CON ultimately picks who gets to compete within the health care sector. Reforming the law will by no means untangle the complexities of health care, but state lawmakers should capitalize on an opportunity to make one of the most highly regulated industries a little less heavy on the red tape and a little more patient friendly.
The Map Act is inefficient, unfair, unconstitutional, and unnecessary. It should be repealed.
The John Locke Foundation is continuing its tradition, started in 1995, of offering an alternative to the governor’s budget recommendation. Consistent with prior years, this JLF budget focuses on core government. This budget spends less in both years of the biennium than the governor’s, and only increases spending by 2 percent from the last fiscal year.
The governor and Republican members of the state legislature are advocating for a host of new incentive programs and the extension and/or expansion of others. However, these programs are likely to harm consumers, investors, and entrepreneurs who are not privy to the subsidies.
The creation of a Department of Information Technology would likely lead to increased government efficiency and cost savings. However, there is no compelling reason to create a new Department of Veterans Affairs.
A transition away from licensure and into voluntary private certification would inject freedom and choice into the market for service professionals and into the labor market. It would pay dividends in terms of job creation particularly in low-income neighborhoods.
In July 2013, the City of Wilson filed a petition with the FCC regarding municipal broadband service. The FCC asked for public comment. This Spotlight comprises the comments by the John Locke Foundation, submitted to the FCC.
On February 26, 2015, the FCC voted in favor of Wilson’s petition.
Overall, North Carolina ranks 23rd in the nation and 5th among the 12 states of the Southeast in freedom. North Carolina ranks 16th in fiscal freedom, 18th in educational freedom, 36th in regulatory freedom, and 46th in health care freedom.
The North Carolina historic preservation tax credits sunset on January 1, 2015. State government should strive to keep the tax code clean. If lawmakers choose to enact a program to aid in historic preservation, a grant program is a better alternative than a tax credit.
Capital gains taxes penalize saving, investment, and therefore entrepreneurship, by imposing a second layer of taxation on equity investment. The most straightforward way to end this bias is to eliminate the tax on capital gains completely.
Since the 1940s, over a million wells have used hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) safely. The chemicals used are about 99 percent water and sand. The rest is a blend of chemical additives, most of which are found in typical household and personal care products.