Category: The Forum

Georgia Works! Through Jobs Programs for Homeless

By Bill McGahan Georgia Works! helps formerly incarcerated and homeless men become productive citizens. Since our founding in 2013 we have helped 311 men get jobs, remain clean and get an apartment, and virtually all have not returned to prison. We have an additional 170 men in the program today, all working toward full-time employment. When a man comes to our voluntary program we ask him to do three things: Be clean of alcohol and drugs (we drug test everybody weekly) Take no handouts from the government or anyone else Work Over the course of 6-12 months we work with each of our clients on their “obstacles” to employment: the lack of a driver’s license, wage garnishments, criminal history, lack… View Article

On Muni Broadband, Buyer Beware

By Kelly McCutchen A year after the Savannah City Council approved a $62,500 contract asking consultants to explore potential demand for a municipal broadband network, the firm finally has released its findings and recommendations.  Magellan Advisors outlines three options: building and operating a taxpayer-financed network providing service directly to consumers at a cost of $116 million; building and operating a taxpayer-financed network providing service only to government offices at a cost of about $13 million; or joint ownership of a fiber-to-premises system with a private entity at a total cost of nearly $13 million, with taxpayers responsible for $6.6 million. Thankfully for the strained city budget, Magellan says the first option wouldn’t work here. Perhaps that’s because the system would… View Article
In a June 27, 2017, article by James Salzer, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution quoted Kelly McCutchen, president of the Georgia Public Policy Foundation, on the state auditing enrollee eligibility on the State Health Benefit Plan. The article, “Georgia saves up to $56 million booting ineligibles from health plan,” is reprinted below and is available online here.  Georgia saves up to $56 million booting ineligibles from health plan By James Salzer The state is hoping to save up to $56 million a year by removing ineligible family members of those enrolled in the State Health Benefit Plan from the program. The state Department of Community Health, which administers Medicaid as well as the State Health Benefit Plan for teachers,… View Article
GEORGIA PUBLIC POLICY FOUNDATION NEWS RELEASE For Immediate Release June 26, 2017 Contact: Benita Dodd, Georgia Public Policy Foundation benitadodd@georgiapolicy.org | (404) 256-4050  Foundation Welcomes Ga. High Court Ruling on Tax Credit Scholarships Atlanta – The Georgia Supreme Court ruled today that the state’s Qualified Education Tax Credit (tuition tax credit scholarships) program is constitutional. Four Georgia taxpayers (Gaddy et al v Georgia Department of Revenue et al) filed suit challenging the program, which allows Georgians to donate to student scholarship organizations (SSOs) and receive a tax credit for their contribution up to a certain amount; the state limits the program to a total of $58 million in donations annually. The SSO must distribute the funds as scholarships… View Article

Can We All Just Get Along?

By Benita M. Dodd What connection do air conditioning, airlines and education have with today’s overheated political climate?  Each has contributed to the lack of understanding, empathy and tolerance. And the results are increasingly devastating.   Consider recent events: In Arlington, Va., five people were injured June 14 in an assassination attempt on a Republican congressional baseball team as they practiced for a charity baseball game. On social media, some people celebrated their injuries as just deserts. The gunman, who later died of injuries sustained when Capitol police officers returned fire, had reportedly asked first whether it was Republicans or Democrats on the field. He was a supporter of Bernie Sanders, the losing Democrat in the presidential elections. Also in Virginia,… View Article

Friday Facts: June 23, 2017

It’s Friday! Quotes of note “Federal laws and regulations raise the costs and slow the construction of infrastructure such as highways and pipelines. Federal subsidies for infrastructure distort the capital investment choices made by state, local, and private owners. And federal taxes reduce the return to investment in private infrastructure across every industry.” – Chris Edwards, “Who Owns U.S. Federal Infrastructure?” “I’m no entrepreneur. I’m not likely to create a zillion jobs. So I should give to charity, and I do. I donate to the Doe Fund, Central Park Conservancy and other charities I can watch, so I see if they spend my donations well. But Bezos, Zuckerberg, Gates and all you entrepreneurs, stop feeling guilty. You,… View Article
By Kelly McCutchen As the August recess fast approaches, procedural rules require health care to be addressed before Congress can move on to other important issues like taxes and infrastructure. Below are five ideas that would move health care reform in the right direction and hopefully create the momentum needed to get to a resolution. Fund uncompensated care. Federal law requires hospital emergency departments to treat anyone regardless of their ability to pay, but federal funding covers only a small portion of the cost. In Georgia, for example, uncompensated care for people too poor to pay their bills amounts to over $1 billion a year. If hospitals can’t shift the cost to state and local taxpayers or private insurance,… View Article

Friday Facts: June 16, 2017

It’s Friday! Remembering the Heroes Many lives were likely saved by the actions of Crystal Griner and David Bailey, the Capitol Hill police officers who were on duty when Rep. Steve Scalise and others were shot on a baseball field this week in Virginia. Here in Georgia, Georgia Department of Corrections officers Christopher Monica and Curtis Billue were killed by inmates in a prison escape. As we keep these individuals and families in our thoughts and prayers, let’s also remember the many other public servants who stand ready every day to step into danger to keep us safe. When Hank McCamish founded the Georgia Public Policy Foundation in 1991, he encouraged us to focus on ideas and not to… View Article

Friday Facts: June 9, 2017

It’s Friday!  Events  June 15-17: FEEcon, a three-day gathering aimed at the nation’s young freedom lovers (students and young professionals) takes place at the Omni Hotel Downtown Atlanta. It offers 10 distinct tracks, 70-plus sessions and speakers including Lawrence Reed, Glenn Jacobs (former WWE wrestler), and Jimmy Wales (founder of Wikipedia). Full details on the schedule can be found at http://www.feecon.org/.  Quotes of note  “The tragedy of modern man is not that he knows less and less about the meaning of his own life, but that it bothers him less and less.” – Vaclav Havel “A general dissolution of principles and manners will more surely overthrow the liberties of America than the whole force of the common enemy.”… View Article

Get Real About the Federal Education Budget

By Larry Sand Did you know that the Trump/DeVos budget is manifestly cruel to children and catastrophic to public schools? Are you aware that Trump/Devos are planning to slash funding for public schools and use voucher schemes to funnel taxpayer dollars to unaccountable private schools? I didn’t “know” these things until the two national teachers union leaders told me. Climbing out of the union rabbit hole and venturing back to the real world, one regains perspective. And the reality is that the Trump/Devos budget cuts – which, of course, will have to run through the Congressional obstacle course before becoming law – don’t warrant the union leaders’ outlandish hyperbole. Not one iota. In a nutshell, the budget does away with… View Article

Name one other organization in the state that does what the Foundation does. You can’t.

Independent survey of Georgia business leaders on the Foundation. more quotes