Category: The Forum

Friday Facts: March 25th, 2011

It’s Friday! What’s happening at the Foundation – April 19: Register now for a noon Policy Briefing Luncheon at the Georgian Club with Samuel Staley, Ph.D., director of urban growth and land use policy at Reason Foundation, on “Getting the Funding You Want for the Transportation You Need.” The cost to attend this event is $35. To find out more and register, go to – Missed an event? Policy Briefing Luncheons and Leadership Breakfasts are videotaped and available for online streaming at FoundationTV on the Foundation’s Web site at – Join our Forum: If you like the Friday Facts, you’ll love the Foundation’s interactive online community.  Register and join the discussion today at View Article

Friday Facts: March 18th, 2011

It’s Friday!  Quotations – “The best thing we can do for democracy in the world, in my view now, is get our own fiscal house in order. If we don’t do that, America’s leadership in the world, even with successful interventions, is going to be in greater and greater doubt.” –  Sam Nunn, former U.S. senator from Georgia Taxes and spending – No tax on the Tagalongs: The state would see a surplus of nearly $1 billion if the tax reform plan is implemented and income tax rates are reduced to 4 percent, according to the latest estimate from Georgia State University. This means some of the more politically unpopular proposals could be dropped or income tax rates… View Article

Friday Facts: March 11th, 2011

It’s Friday! What they’re saying about the Foundation – “Over the years I’ve come to appreciate the Foundation more than ever. And y’all are needed more than ever! I’m glad if I can help in ANY way. … Thanks for what you guys do!” – Dorothy J. Adams, Eatonton, Georgia Events – April 19: Mark your calendar for a noon Policy Briefing Luncheon at the Georgian Club with Samuel Staley, Ph.D., director of urban growth and land use policy at Reason Foundation, on “Getting the Funding You Want for the Transportation You Need.” The cost to attend this event is $35. Register at – Missed an event? Policy Briefing Luncheons and Leadership Breakfasts… View Article

Friday Facts: March 4th, 2011

It’s Friday!   What can you do to help the Foundation celebrate its 20th birthday in 2011? E-mail to share how you can highlight the Foundation’s “20 For 20,” campaign. Will you recommend us to 20 of your Facebook friends? Will you commit to $20 a month for our 20th anniversary? If so, go to … And let us know! Quotations We partnered with the Concord Coalition this week to bring the Fiscal Solutions Tour to Georgia. You can read Mike Klein’s report on the event, but here are two quotes: – “Total federal spending net of inflation has grown almost 300 percent since 1970. It is expected to grow by another 250 percent between… View Article

Are Georgia’s OPEB Liabilities a Problem?

Commentary Are Georgia’s OPEB Liabilities a Problem?   By Allen Buckley   The media often reports about the funding problems of state and local pension plans, such as the plans maintained by Illinois, California and New Jersey. Georgia’s pension plans have also received significant press as well, although most of it has been positive. Regularly overlooked are liabilities relating to post-retirement medical obligations.   In a February 28, 2006 press release titled “Georgia Named One of Top Five Best States for Pension Funds,” Governor Sonny Perdue boasted: “I am proud of Georgia’s high pension fund ratio.” The article stated the State’s pension funding ratio was 101 percent, trailing only Florida and North Carolina.   Like most pension plans, Georgia’s plans… View Article

The Worst Health Care Plan in the Nation? Medicaid

"Medicaid is arguably the worst health care program in the country," says Galen Institute President Grace-Marie Turner. "Recipients are promised a long list of benefits, but doctors who participate in the program are paid so little, and the paperwork is so onerous, that many can afford to see only a few Medicaid patients. As a result, patients flood to hospital emergency rooms where — if they wait long enough — they eventually will be seen. Many have only routine health complaints that easily could have been handled in a doctor's office. A study by the National Center for Health Statistics found that Medicaid recipients were more likely to have multiple emergency room visits in a year than… View Article

The Parent Trigger, Online Education and Charter Schools

While students in many developed nations have been learning more and more over time, American 15-year-olds are stuck in the middle of the pack in many fundamental areas, including reading and math. Yet the United States is near the top in education spending. In her essay "Losing the Brains Race," Veronique de Rugy clearly shows the failure of throwing money at our education system. Instead, she proposes more choice and innovation: "In long-suffering California, a bipartisan coalition is supporting a new response to such irrational practices: the “parent trigger,” which allows fed-up parents whose children are in a consistently underperforming school to quickly change the school’s leadership. By signing a petition, parents can force reorganization of a school’s… View Article

Friday Facts: February 25th, 2011

It’s Friday! Events – March 1: Join the Georgia Public Policy Foundation and the Concord Coalition for the Fiscal Solutions Tour at 5 p.m. on March 1 at Kennesaw State University. The Fiscal Solutions Tour is a discussion of potential solutions to our nation’s fiscal challenges, featuring David M. Walker, former U.S. Comptroller General and Founder and current President and CEO of the Comeback America Initiative. There is no charge for our members. Find out more here: – March 5: Register now to hear school choice champion Jay Greene, author of “Education Myths,” keynote a Foundation Leadership Breakfast at 8:30 a.m. at Mary Mac’s Tea Room in Atlanta. This event is co-sponsored by the Center for an… View Article

Joel Klein on Digital Learning

Education Week features a recent interview with former New York City Chancellor Joel Klein, who is now heading the education division of News Corp. Here are excerpts:   The education division's guiding principle is that we've got to change from a 20th century–or even late 19th century–model of classroom instruction to a more individualized, differentiated model. We've got immense new opportunities to do this now. Much, much more digitized content is available today than was ever the case before. Technology and digitization offer a very powerful way to supplement a teacher's delivery of instruction with multiple modalities. We're seeing this now at School of One, Rocketship Academies, Carpe Diem in Arizona…and global models that are moving in this direction.… View Article

Tax Foundation releases latest state/local tax burden rankings

Georgia’s state and local tax burden ranks 32nd highest, according to the Tax Foundation’s latest report. North Carolina ranked 16th highest, Florida was just above Georgia at 31 and the remaining southern states ranked lower than Georgia. For nearly two decades the Tax Foundation has published an estimate of the combined state-local tax burden shouldered by the residents of each of the 50 states. For each state, we calcu­late the total amount paid by the residents in taxes, then divide those taxes by the state's total income to compute a "tax burden." We make this calculation not only for the most recent year but also for earlier years because tax and income data are revised periodically by govern­ment agencies.… View Article

The Georgia Public Policy Foundation is our state’s leading organization promoting government transparency. The Secretary of State’s office shares the Foundation’s commitment to transparency and responsible stewardship of taxpayer dollars, which is why our agency was the first in Georgia to publish its budget and spending data on a public transparency website.

Karen Handel, Georgia Secretary of State more quotes