Category: The Forum

Friday Facts: December 27, 2013

It’s Friday! It’s nearing year’s end, and we’d like to remind you: The Georgia Public Policy Foundation and the Friday Facts, our most popular product, exist thanks to your support and contributions. Please help us continue “Changing Georgia Policy, Changing Georgians’ Lives,” with your tax-deductible end-of-year contribution at http://tinyurl.com/3y27zfm. Quote of Note “Be always at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let each New Year find you a better man.” — Benjamin Franklin Events January 28, 2014: Join the Georgia Public Policy Foundation and education experts Eric Wearne, Jim Kelly and Ben Scafidi at Cobb County’s Georgian Club for an 8 a.m. Leadership Breakfast and panel discussion celebrating National School Choice Week:… View Article
(Click on YouTube links to watch Council on Criminal Justice Reform segments.) By Mike Klein Mike KleinEditor, Georgia Public Policy Foundation Georgia would “Ban the Box” and take a deeper dive into return-to-prison recidivism rates under two preliminary recommendations approved this week by the Georgia Council on Criminal Justice Reform.  The Council’s final report is due to Governor Nathan Deal, the judiciary and legislators before they open their session on Monday, January 13, 2014. The Council approved four proposals to update civil asset forfeiture law which has been a contentious issue.  (YouTube)  And, it sought to strengthen personal protection by proposing legal action could be taken against private parties who publish erroneous or outdated criminal records, especially when… View Article

Friday Facts: December 20, 2013

It’s Friday! It’s nearing year’s end, and we’d like to remind you: The Georgia Public Policy Foundation and the Friday Facts, our most popular product, exist thanks to your support and contributions. Please help us continue “Changing Georgia Policy, Changing Georgians’ Lives,” with your tax-deductible end-of-year contribution at http://tinyurl.com/3y27zfm. Quote of Note “Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind. To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real spirit of Christmas.” – Calvin Coolidge Events January 28, 2014: Join the Georgia Public Policy Foundation and education experts Eric Wearne, Jim Kelly and Ben Scafidi at Cobb County’s Georgian Club for an 8 a.m. Leadership… View Article

School Choice: Study Shows It’s About More Than Scores

By Benita M. Dodd         BENITA DODD The Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice recently released an eye-opening analysis of why and how parents choose private schools. The analysis by the national nonprofit organization is worth the read for Georgians especially. It is Georgia-based, undertaken by Georgia Public Policy Foundation senior fellows Jim Kelly and Dr. Benjamin Scafidi, and uses the results of a survey of Georgia parents of K–12 private school scholarship recipients. The study, “More than Scores,” is available at www.edchoice.org. It addresses what parents focus on in choosing a school; what information schools should provide, and whether school choice – public or private – would provide a more “spontaneous education order.” The authors of the study say they addressed… View Article

The Right Minimum Wage: $0.00

We’ve written often about the unintended consequences of the minimum wage (and all price controls). But it’s a sea change when a New York Times editorial agrees: “Anyone working in America surely deserves a better living standard than can be managed on $3.35 an hour. But there’s a virtual consensus among economists that the minimum wage is an idea whose time has passed. Raising the minimum wage by a substantial amount would price working poor people out of the job market. A far better way to help them would be to subsidize their wages or – better yet – help them acquire the skills needed to earn more on their own.” Here’s a link to a video of Milton Friedman… View Article
By Mike Klein Mike KleinEditor, Georgia Public Policy Foundation When President John F. Kennedy said, “We choose to go to the moon” in 1961, he meant quickly, before the end of the decade.  Eight years later an American flag was planted on the moon, the result of a clear vision and a clear goal.  Regrettably, no similar clear vision or goal can be found in Georgia’s new digital learning task force report.   Transition won out over transformation when something clear and bold is what was really needed. The Digital Learning Task Force report released Wednesday is the result of more than one year’s work requested by Governor Nathan Deal.  Divided into sections on infrastructure, digital content and courses, and, blended… View Article

Georgia Medicaid Expansion – Woodwork Effect

Even if Georgia decides not to expand Medicaid eligibility, the state could be facing a $385 million annual increase in Medicaid costs. This comes on the heels of the provider fee increase this year that raised $689 million to fill a shortfall in the Medicaid program. The Georgia Department of Community Health (DCH) projects that ObamaCare will cost Georgia taxpayers $225 million in FY 2015. This includes the cost of individuals who are currently eligible for Medicaid but not enrolled signing up for coverage due to the “woodwork effect” — literally thousands of new Medicaid enrollees “coming out of the woodwork” to sign up for Medicaid. The Urban Institute estimates there are 159,000 adult, low-income Georgians who are eligible for View Article

Georgia Pension Funding Improving

If Santa looks at states when making a list of who’s naughty or nice, he will find seven who most improved the condition of their pension funds since 2009, when the economic recovery began. Georgia, Idaho, Maine, Mississippi, New Hampshire, Oklahoma and Virginia are most improved, having more money available to fulfill their promises to retirees.  (In accounting terms, this means less “unfunded liabilities.”) Source: Institute for Trust in Accounting Georgia was among the top ten states in terms of pension funding in 2010, as measured by a Pew Charitable Trusts study, with 85 percent of its long-term state pension liabilities funded.… View Article

Georgia Medicaid Expansion – 409,000 vs 650,000

A new report from the Kaiser Family Foundation points out that 409,350 Georgians will fall into the “coverage gap” if the state refuses to expand Medicaid (Table 2 in the report). Large federal subsidies will be available to assist families with incomes above the Federal Poverty Level purchase private insurance, which means that the number left uninsured if Georgia does not expand Medicaid is 409,350 instead of the 650,000 that most news organizations have reported. The Georgia Department of Community Health estimates these new Medicaid enrollees would cost more than $5,800 per person. For comparison, the average cost of uncompensated care for the uninsured is approximately $1,500 per person. (Source: Urban Institute)… View Article

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State Representative Bob Irvin more quotes