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.
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.
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 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.
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