Category: The Forum

Friday Facts: February 24, 2017

It’s Friday!  Events **Late-breaking Friday Fact!!! March 23: Mark your calendar!  The Foundation’s March Leadership Breakfast will be keynoted by former U.S. Rep. Lynn Westmoreland of Georgia, who served six terms in Congress before announcing his retirement in 2016. Details to follow. March 23-24: The Heartland Institute hosts the 12th International Conference on Climate Change at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Washington, D.C. The theme of the two-day conference is “Resetting U.S. Climate Policy.” Georgia Public Policy Foundation President Kelly McCutchen (rear) was at the White House this month, where he and representatives of sister think tanks met with White House officials to discuss health care reform. Quotes of noteCosts can be concealed but not… View Article
By Harold Brown Harold Brown  Global warming (climate change) is not just a scientific subject but also a technical-social-political scramble. Several recent episodes illustrate this; just one has been widely reported. First, most recent and receiving the greatest media attention: Just days after the appointment of Scott Pruitt as the new administrator of the federal Environmental Protection Agency came the reports on the court-ordered release this week of thousands of emails between Pruitt and “fossil fuel companies like Koch Industries and Devon Energy” when he was Oklahoma’s attorney general. The Associated Press, noting Pruitt’s office contacted the lobbyist for his utility (AEP) after his power went out, reported the emails reveal “cozy ties” between Pruitt “and those that profit… View Article

Testimony on Education Savings Accounts

Senate Education and Youth Committee Wednesday, February 22, 2017 Testimony of Kelly McCutchen, President, Georgia Public Policy Foundation I would like to focus my testimony on the impact of Education Savings Accounts (ESAs) on public schools. Regarding student achievement, research shows that school choice improves outcomes modestly for public school students. As of last May, 33 empirical studies had been published that examined the effect of school choice on students’ academic outcomes in public schools. Of those, 31 found choice improved public schools. One found no visible effect. One found a negative effect.[1] Regarding fiscal impact, being fiscally conservative, we certainly appreciate any concern about the cost to taxpayers of any new state programs. Fortunately, any negative… View Article
House Ways and Means Tax Reform Subcommittee Wednesday, February 22, 2017 Testimony of Kelly McCutchen, President, Georgia Public Policy Foundation  I would like to focus on four positive aspects of HB 329. Pro-Growth: An almost universally held principle of good tax reform is the goal of broadening the tax base and lowering tax rates. This bill does both. Simplification: This bill simplifies the Georgia Tax Code by collapsing six tax brackets into one flat rate. Economic Competitiveness: Lowering Georgia’s top marginal tax rate to 5.4 percent moves Georgia’s rate below that of seven states, including our neighbor North Carolina, which recently reduced its top tax rate of 7.75 percent to a flat rate of 499 percent.… View Article

Bottleneckers: A Chokehold on Good Government

By Benita M. Dodd Georgia legislators get lots of input on lawmaking and good policy. The Georgia Public Policy Foundation provides legislators with a “Guide to the Issues.” After every election year, the Biennial Institute at UGA’s Carl Vinson Institute offers “an orientation to the legislative process for new lawmakers and timely policy sessions for all attendees.” So how do laws happen? According to the Senate, “A need for a new law or change in existing law is recognized by legislator, or suggested by the Governor, public agency, a constituent, or others.” A General Assembly website summarizes: “Legislator sees need for a new law or changes in existing law and decides to introduce a bill.” Despite the… View Article

Friday Facts: February 17, 2017

It’s Friday!  Events  February 22: Register by MONDAY to join the Georgia Public Policy Foundation and the Institute for Justice for, “Bottleneckers,” Wednesday’s Leadership Breakfast and Book Forum with Dick Carpenter, co-author of, “Bottleneckers: Gaming the Government for Power and Private Profit.” Cobb County’s Georgian Club, 8 a.m. $30. C-SPAN BookTV will be recording this event. Information and registration here. March 23-24: The Heartland Institute hosts the 12th International Conference on Climate Change at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Washington, D.C. The theme of the two-day conference is “Resetting U.S. Climate Policy.” Quotes of note “[U]nlike much of the Left, most conservatives handle despair like mature adults. Most obviously, we didn’t riot. In fact,… View Article

Marietta Daily Journal Quotes Foundation Over Pay Raises

The Marietta Daily Journal’s “Around Town” column of Tuesday, February 14, 2017 quoted Foundation Vice President Benita Dodd in response to the Cobb County Commission’s plan to implement across-the-board increases based on a consultant’s recommendation. The item is published below and can be accessed online hereCAN’T BUY ME LOVE AROUND TOWN: Commissioners to weigh $8.3 million pay increase for county employees THIS MORNING, after presumably kissing their spouses, county commissioners will decide whether to give county employees an $8.3 million valentine. But before they make that decision, there are a few things commissioners may want to consider. Under former County Chairman Tim Lee, Cobb County paid the Archer Group a premium of $326,420 to conduct a study of… View Article

Georgians Share their Health Plan Experiences

We asked Georgians to share their health plan experiences under the Affordable Care Act. Here are some of their stories. ‘Services fell to the point that we looked at medico-tourism’ Affordable Care Act? My wife and I and one child; insurance has tripled in the past three years. Last year was $18,000 with over $10,000 in deductibles and we are relatively healthy. … A skin cancer surgery about five years ago; a heart scare about eight years ago (that turned out to be nothing). Each year the price rose staggeringly, the deductibles increased and the services fell to the point that we looked at medico-tourism to Mexico as a realistic option when minor hernia surgery was going to cost me… View Article
NEWS RELEASE For Immediate Release February 10, 2017 Contact: Benita Dodd, Georgia Public Policy Foundation benitadodd@georgiapolicy.org | (404) 256-4050  Foundation Welcomes Tom Price as HHS Secretary Atlanta – Kelly McCutchen, president of the Georgia Public Policy Foundation, had the following response to today’s Senate confirmation and swearing in of Tom Price as U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services. “As a Georgia legislator, as a U.S. Congressman and as a physician, Dr. Price has championed a patient-first approach that holds enormous promise for beleaguered Americans struggling to afford and access health coverage,” McCutchen said. “The Foundation has enjoyed a longstanding relationship with Dr. Price and we look forward to continuing to work toward state-focused health care options that are affordable… View Article
By Jenn Hatfield When President Donald Trump was sworn into office on January 20, the clock started ticking on the 282 promises he made on the campaign trail. While his every move has garnered significant media attention, Trump has also pledged to make what happens in Washington matter less. In his inaugural address, he declared, “We are transferring power from Washington, D.C. and giving it back to you, the American People.” So it’s only fitting to give a bit more attention to what governors are saying – especially on K-12 education, where Trump and Secretary of Education have both promised to respect state autonomy and make good on the states-rights spirit of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). As a… View Article

I wanted to publicly say how much I appreciate Georgia Public Policy Foundation.  For those of you that will be entering the Legislature or are relatively new you may not quite yet appreciate how much we rely on Georgia Public Policy Foundation’s research and work.  As you know we’re a citizen’s legislature.  We have very little staff. They have been an invaluable, invaluable resource to us.  To put this [Forum] on and the regular programs that they do throughout the year make us better at what we do. (At the 2012 Georgia Legislative Policy Forum.)

Speaker Pro Tem Jan Jones more quotes