• Research Report

    Let Public Vote on Debt: “Promise Now, Pay Later” Policy Has Hiked Taxes

    posted June 13, 2004 by John Hood
    State legislators are currently considering proposals to issue hundreds of millions of dollars in additional debt without seeking voter approval. The billions of dollars worth of bonds and other debt already approved since 1996 have more than quadrupled the state’s debt service and represent as much as a third of the fiscal impact of the tax hikes passed by the General Assembly since 2001. It’s no wonder politicians are wary of asking voters for more. But that’s why they should.
  • Research Report

    Where to Find Savings: Benchmarking, Setting Priorities the Key to Balance

    posted May 31, 2004 by John Hood
    As the 2004-05 budget process continues, policymakers should use regional and historical benchmarks to identify where to look for savings. Among major budget items, North Carolina spending on K-12 education and law enforcement is at the regional average but its Medicaid and higher-education expenses are higher than in comparable states. Reasonable restraint would save enough money to repeal last year’s tax hikes and catch up on deferred repairs and renovations.
  • Research Report

    The Best Fiscal Choice: Refund Tax Overpayments, Rejuvenate the Economy

    posted May 12, 2004 by John Hood
    For the first time since 2001, Gov. Mike Easley is proposing a budget plan that does not include new tax increases. However, his 2004-05 plan does contain hundreds of millions of dollars in new spending financed by previous, costly tax hikes on North Carolina families and businesses. A better fiscal choice would be to eliminate low-priority items from the budget and repeal prior sales and income tax increases. The best choice would be to implement JLF’s Freedom Budget plan.
  • Research Report

    Climate Change: A Survey of North Carolina Business Leaders

    posted May 10, 2004 by Chad Adams, John Hood
    A new survey of North Carolina’s most politically active business executives suggests that they do not agree with the current direction of public policy in the state. A sample of about 300 respondents from every region of North Carolina answered questions about fiscal policy, education, transportation, tax rates, regulation, and ways to improve economic competitiveness. This report provides not only data from the statewide sample but also from six regional subgroups: the Research Triangle, the Piedmont Triad, the Charlotte area, Northeastern North Carolina, Southeastern North Carolina, and Western North Carolina.
  • Research Report

    From Entitlement to Investment: Rethinking U.S. Disability Policy for the 21st Century

    posted March 8, 2004 by John Hood
    More than a decade after the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1990, disability policy in the United States remains fraught with uncertainty, dashed hopes, and contradictions. While most persons living with disabilities today have an unprecedented quality of life — largely the product of medical and technological advancements that would have seemed more the realm of science fiction than science fact a generation or two ago — they are also experiencing some surprisingly negative trends.
  • Research Report

    The Tax Study That Isn’t: NC taxes are not among friendliest to business

    posted February 19, 2004 by Dr. Roy Cordato
    Some state politicians are touting the results of an Ernst & Young study that purports to rank North Carolina’s business taxes as among the lowest in the nation. But this flawed study ignores basic principles of public-finance economics and most of the taxes that influence business decisions. More accurate studies that examine all relevant taxes and all types of businesses suggest that North Carolina’s tax rates are high in regional rankings, thus discouraging economic growth.
  • Research Report

    By the Numbers 2004

    posted January 7, 2004 by Michael Lowrey
    Counties and towns are a critical level of government in North Carolina, providing or administering many critical services while taking in billions of dollars of revenue. This is especially true as the state government has increasingly shifted more taxing authority to localities to make up for money kept by the state. While the importance of county and municipal government is great, obtaining comparative data is difficult. To help address this, By the Numbers 2004 provides information on how much local government costs in every city and county in North Carolina.

Research Reports by Author

Research Reports by Research Type