Category: Privatization

The Dangers of Municipal Broadband

The Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity published this roundup on February 17, 2016, of municipal broadband project initiatives around the nation. Find the article online at  http://franklincenterhq.org/12493/watchdog-government-broadband. The Internet of tax dollars: Watchdog covers the dangers of municipal broadband By As the economy continues its full-throttle transition into the digital age, government-run Internet projects have become all the rage among lawmakers in statehouses, counties, and cities. Bolstered [1] by a Federal Communications Commission ruling last year that struck down laws preventing local governments from building out and competing with other broadband networks, these “municipal broadband” projects lead governments to sink tens – if not hundreds – of millions of dollars into Internet infrastructure. Much of these… View Article
Georgia Public Policy Foundation President Kelly McCutchen was interviewed for a November 2, 2015, Heartland Institute article by Tony Corvo on Peachtree City’s planned taxpayer-funded broadband.  The full article is below; access it online here. Georgia Lawmakers Boot Up Taxpayer-Funded Internet By Tony Corvo The Peachtree City, Georgia City Council recently approved spending $3.2 million in taxpayer dollars to build and fund a municipal broadband Internet system. The new taxpayer-funded Internet service provider (ISP) will be funded through a mixture of subscriber fees and excise fees paid by cable television subscribers. Broadband ‘Boondoggles’ “I can’t speak for Peachtree City residents, but I think taxpayers are fed up with funding government boondoggles, especially when government is attempting to compete with… View Article
By Benita M. Dodd The average Joe’s eyes tend to glaze over when I share that I work at a state-focused free-market think tank. I try again, telling them it’s a public policy research organization. What finally resonates is when I say, as I did this week at the sushi restaurant I frequent, “I work to keep government out of your business: lower taxes and stop interfering in how you run your business.” When that dawned on the server at the restaurant, whose first language clearly isn’t English, a huge smile lit up her face. As I left, she said to me, laughing, “Now, go do your work!” I love my work. It may sound like a highfalutin profession, but… View Article
<img height=”1″ width=”1″ alt=”” style=”display:none” src=”https://www.facebook.com/tr?ev=6030221446672&amp;cd[value]=0.00&amp;cd[currency]=USD&amp;noscript=1″ />By Michael LaFaive and Kelly McCutchen Did you know that just three public school districts in the state of Georgia contract out transportation services? More than a third of all conventional pubic school districts in Georgia contract out one of the three major non-instructional services, according to survey data collected this summer by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, a Michigan-based research institute. The Mackinac Center survey of Georgia and four other states found that 38 percent of Georgia districts contract out for at least one of the “big three” non-instructional services: food, transportation and custodial services. Done right, contracting out can save money and relieve management headaches, too. But Mackinac found a… View Article

Eva Galambos: Farewell to an Iron Lady of Georgia

Friends: The funeral for Eva Galambos, the first mayor of Sandy Springs, Ga., was Tuesday, April 21, 2015. Eva was a memorable lady; read her official obituary here. I remember the first time I met her. She came by the Georgia Public Policy Foundation to discuss her favorite topic: creating the City of Sandy Springs. Sandy Springs Mayor Eva Galambos joined Leonard Gilroy of the Reason Foundation at the first Georgia Legislative Policy Forum in 2010 for a panel discussion on the privatization and outsourcing of government services. We pushed back, questioning the need to create another layer of government. She maintained that consolidated government typically consolidates at the highest service level. She explained: Imagine, for example, two local… View Article
By Jeffrey Dorfman  JEFFREY DORFMAN Every member of the Georgia Legislature was elected this past November. Thus, one would expect those legislators to hold the citizens who elected them in high esteem; after all, they were wise enough to elect them, right? The next month or so will determine whether those legislators actually trust their voters to make independent decisions in the marketplace or they believe the citizens need to be protected from decisions elected officials don’t think we are capable of making on our own. Two bills before the Legislature demonstrate the choice before these politicians. One would allow craft brewers and brewpubs to actually sell beer for customers to take home; another would allow Tesla to sell cars… View Article

Day 38 Update: Foster Care Reform Bills Remain in Limbo

(Update:  Thursday morning the Senate Health & Human Services Committee chaired by Sen. Renee Unterman briefly considered attaching the SB 350 version of foster care reform to HB 990, the House bill that would require legislative approval to change Medicaid eligibility.  The discussion was short.  “I support the foster care bill that we passed and I am disappointed that the House hasn’t taken it up on their side,” said Senate President Pro Tempore David Shafer, who then quashed the proposal to combine SB 350 with HB 990.  “I would urge that we continue to find other vehicles for foster care,” Shafer added.  No House or Senate votes on foster care legislation are anticipated today, which is Day 38 on the… View Article

Outsourcing of School Support Services

The Mackinac Center for Public Policy’s Michigan School Privatization Survey 2013 , released last week, finds that 357 of Michigan’s 545 local school districts (65.5%) contracted out for at least one of the three main non-instructional services — custodial, food, and transportation — in 2013, a figure that has more than doubled since the Center began publishing its annual study in 2001. The survey found that 45.5% of districts contracted with private companies for facilities maintenance and other custodial work, followed by food services at 36.5% and transportation at 21%. “Every dollar saved through privatization is a dollar that can be redirected toward the classroom where it belongs,” according to the Mackinac Center’s James Hohman. The full report is available View Article

Airport Privatization Could Take Off

By Benita M. Dodd For years, Georgia has been trying to site an airport to supplement Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, the busiest passenger airport in the world. Suggestions have been all over the map, from Dawsonville to Macon to Chattanooga. Now a plan to make a Gwinnett County airport a regional relief valve – by privatizing it – finally holds promise. The 600-acre Briscoe Field is a general aviation airport about 37 miles northeast of Atlanta and a mile outside Lawrenceville. Owned by Gwinnett, its 6,001-foot runway and parallel taxiway can handle light general aviation and most corporate jet aircraft. The airport handled 83,458 aircraft operations and served as a base for 236 aircraft in the most recent 12-month reporting… View Article
By Leonard C. Gilroy Our culture makes the simplest problems complex and the simplest solutions expensive. None seem simpler than the cause of obesity and its cure, but nutritionists, psychologists, government and popular culture have made its cure both a complex science and mystical mission. What we learned from nutrition courses a half-century or more ago still holds true today: If we consume more calories than we need, the excess energy is stored as fat. Popular science, however, won’t have it. A study group reporting to the U.S. Food and Drug Agency says, “The problem of obesity has no single cause.” In a nitpicking sense, that is correct. Potatoes, peanuts, hamburgers, ice cream and cake are all causes, as are… View Article

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State Representative Bob Irvin more quotes