The April issue of Budget & Tax News covers the ongoing protests in Madison, Wisconsin, where thousands of government workers were staging sit-ins at the State Capitol building. More than a dozen Democratic state senators from Wisconsin are on the lam in Illinois, where runaway lawmakers from Indiana later fled.
Also in this issue:
- Pennsylvania motorists tired of driving on pothole-strewn highways and sitting in traffic jams might see some relief coming their way. A bill written by state Rep. Rick Geist would allow private companies to set up partnerships with the state.
- A new report finds the bag tax Washingtonians have been paying for more than a year is a job-killer and economic loser. As expected, the poorest are hit the hardest.
- The Obama administration wants to spend $53 billion over the next six years on passenger high-speed rail projects, but the initial reaction indicates strong opposition. High costs, low ridership, and slow speeds are among the criticisms.
- A new analysis finds the number of federal aid programs for state and local governments totaled 1,122 in 2010, more than triple the number 25 years ago. Some of the most expensive programs are in education, housing, health care, and transportation.
- From selling state airplanes--“not a core function of government”--to the site chosen to unveil his proposed budget (a church in a small Central Florida town), Florida’s new Republican governor, Rick Scott, has from day one disfavored political and governmental bureaucracies and embraced free-market ideals.
- “The tax code is broken and needs to be fixed,” National Taxpayer Advocate Nina E. Olson wrote in her 2010 annual report to Congress. “Yet no broad-based attempt to reform the tax code has been made.”
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