Press Releases

 

Entries in Josiah Bartlett Center (152)

Saturday
Apr272013

Josiah Bartlett Center - The Internet Sales Tax and Earth Day 

Weekly Update from the
Josiah Bartlett Center


Keeping you up to date on our latest research
on the issues impacting New Hampshire


Other states have always been annoyed by states like New Hampshire without a sales tax. Tax competition is distressing to the uncompetitive. But few tax grabs are as ill considered, unfair, and anti-competitive as the federal government’s attempt to impose a massive new internet sales tax. New Hampshire in particular needs to be careful. The new tax will lead to the elimination of the sales tax competitive advantage that is the foundation of our retail economy

Under the American tax system, states may apply taxes to entities with a physical presence (or “nexus”) in the state. It would of course be ridiculous to expect an orange grower in Florida to apply your state’s sales tax on fruit you buy on vacation or to exempt you if you came from a state with no sales tax. So, in general, one state’s tax collector has no authority to reach across state lines and regulate you from beyond the borders.
... Click here to keep reading.

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NHOpenGov

Now nearly 3.5 Million State Transactions

Ever wonder how and where New Hampshire spends your tax dollars? Look no further than NHOpenGov.org, an open government project of the Center. We now have more than 3.5 Million transactions detailing how every last dollar was spent from the past 4 1/2 years. Help us find government waste! Click here to start looking.
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Markets Clean the Enviroment
It’s Earth Day, the environmental movement’s annual celebration of top-down environmental restrictions and reduced standards of living in the name of sustainability. A rather newer annual tradition is my post reminding you that free markets are a better, cheaper, faster way to clean up the environment, reduce future pollution, and protect endangered species than command and control methods... Click here to keep reading.
Monday
Apr222013

Josiah Bartlett Center - Budgets, NH Unemployment, and the MTBE Lawsuit

Weekly Update from the
Josiah Bartlett Center


Keeping you up to date on our latest research
on the issues impacting New Hampshire


New Hampshire’s budget experiences the greatest difficulty when short-term fixes solve nothing and merely delay decisions by creating a bigger hole for future legislatures to fix. A budget based on gimmicks and one-time unusual events does nothing to solve anything.

Every New Hampshire budget requires some decisions about which programs can be afforded with existing revenues and which must be curtailed. The weighing of competing options is the whole point of a budget. Programs are never evaluated in and of themselves. Instead, they are weighed against competing alternatives and the resources available... Click here to keep reading.

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NH's Newest Revenue Scheme: Sue the Unpopular!

On the MTBE Verdict

New Hampshire is getting really good at the shakedown.

Last week, a Merrimack County Superior Court jury found Exxon Mobil liable for contaminated well water with the gasoline additive MTBE and awarded the state $236 million, easily the largest jury verdict in New Hampshire history... Click here to keep reading

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NH Unemployment Falls in March

But not for the right reasons

Sound familiar? New Hampshire’s unemployment rate dropped from 5.8% to 5.7% in March, but not due to increased employment. According to the Household Survey Data, the number of unemployed fell by 360 people, resulting in the .1 percentage point drop. However, the number of employed residents increased only by 20, while the labor force shrank by 340... Click here to keep reading.

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The State's Online Checkbook


JBC's Transparency Project

With the budget process underway here in Concord are you curious where all that money is spent? Look no further than NHOpenGov. We have data on every last check the state wrote going back to 2009.... Click here to start looking!

Friday
Apr122013

Josiah Bartlett Center - Monopolies, Unemployment, and Old Budget Gimmicks 

Weekly Update from the
Josiah Bartlett Center


Keeping you up to date on our latest research
on the issues impacting New Hampshire


Every problem does not demand government action. Every business relationship doesn’t need micromanaging intervention by legislators. Yet in this day and age the first course of action for many businesses is to turn to their elected friends for a little help.

A classic example of crony capitalism at work is the legislature’s intervention on behalf of auto dealers in their relationship with manufacturers. Everyone likes auto dealers. They’re nice guys, big donors to a variety of civic and political interests, even think tanks on occasion. They tend to be among the largest employers in many political districts and a very visible part of the community... Click here to keep reading.

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NH Paying for Decision to Borrow School Building Aid Funds

Budget Gimmick from 3 years Ago Haunting Current Budget Writers

New Hampshire’s decision to borrow money for three years to pay for the state’s Building Aid Program is adding a $27.6 million crunch to the current budget debate. Click here to keep reading

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Unemployment Falls in March

But not for the right reasons

According to the BLS, the national unemployment rate fell in March to 7.6%, from 7.7% in February. On the surface it would appear that the labor is recovering, however the data contained within the report shows the opposite to be true... Click here to keep reading.

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The State's Online Checkbook


JBC's Transparency Project

With the budget process underway here in Concord are you curious where all that money is spent? Look no further than NHOpenGov. We have data on every last check the state wrote going back to 2009.... Click here to start looking!

Friday
Apr052013

Josiah Bartlett Center - The Budget, Gimmicks, and the Tobacco Settlement 

Keeping you up to date on our latest research
on the issues impacting New Hampshire


The current state budget is a work in progress that needs a lot more work and some more progress. As with any budget, there are good things and bad. The House version is a step forward from the governor’s but has a few glaring problems that need fixing.

To begin with, while general fund spending is up 9.1% over the two years of the budget, that fact is obscured by a return to accounting gimmicks that serve no real purpose except to hide the increase. Two large categories of spending have been relabeled so that they appear in the old budget totals under general fund but are left out of the new general fund total... Click here to keep reading.

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House Budget Relies on Tobacco Settlement to Balanced

Yet to be Finalized

The two-year state budget up for debate in the New Hampshire House today relies on $30 million from a settlement with tobacco companies that hasn’t been finalized. Click here to keep reading

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2014-2015 Budget Resources

One stop shop for all our work on the budget

As the Budget Process gets under way at the State House, in addition to publishing our pieces on the main page, we will be aggregating all of budget related content here... Click here to keep reading.

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The State's Online Checkbook


Continuing our look at the Highway Fund

AWith the budget process underway here in Concord are you curious where all that money is spent? Look no further than NHOpenGov. We have data on every last check the state wrote going back to 2009.... Click here to start looking!

Friday
Mar292013

Josiah Bartlett Center - The Budget, CON, School Choice, and Safety's Cut 

Weekly Update from the
Josiah Bartlett Center


Keeping you up to date on our latest research
on the issues impacting New Hampshire


The state budget is a mess. So what’s new? House budget writers are working to make sense of that mess before Friday. Their budget will be different from the governor’s but likely leave a lot of work left to be done.

In New Hampshire, governors present a budget more or less fully formed to the legislature. Then the House of Representatives takes six weeks to develop their own draft, plug any holes in assumptions, and then pass that draft to the state senate for further work... Click here to keep reading.

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House Finance Wants to Revive CON Board

Due to Expire in 2015

The House Finance Committee has voted to bring the state’s Certificate of Need Board back from the brink of extinction. The panel yesterday approved an amendment to the state budget that would undo last year’s repeal of the Health Services Planning and Review Board. Click here to keep reading

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Indiana Supreme Court Upholds School Choice Vouchers

Upheld for Religious Schools as well

The Indiana Supreme Court’s has unanimously upheld that state’s controversial school choice program, defeating a union challenge to the tax-funded scholarships for low-income students... Click here to keep reading.

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Highway Fund Diversion: What Does Safety's Cut Pay For?


Continuing our look at the Highway Fund

As detailed in an earlier piece on the Highway Fund diversion the Department of Safety receives a sizeable portion of the revenue raised by the state Highway Fund. Historically the Department has received roughly between 24% and 32% of the amount collected, net of block grants to the municipalities... Click here to keep reading.