Recent Research & Commentary

Research & Commentary: Georgia's Tobacco Tax Advantage

December 8, 2010

Georgia state Rep. Ron Stephens (R-Savannah) wants to raise the state’s cigarette tax by a dollar per pack in order to help close the state’s $1.5 billion budget deficit.

Research & Commentary: A Federal Balanced Budget Amendment

November 10, 2010

The current public outrage over bailouts, excessive spending, and a staggering national debt are helping fuel the push for a federal balanced budget amendment.

Research & Commentary: Jobs and the Health Care Law

Benjamin Domenech
November 9, 2010

There is little question that the key issue for most voters in November’s election was the economy.

How Higher Tuition Translates into More Debt for State Universities

Simon Wong
October 12, 2010

The S.C. Budget and Control Board recently announced a moratorium halting construction at four-year public institutions that raised tuition by 7 percent or more for the 2010-2011 school year.

The moratorium applies only to institutions that raised tuition by 7 percent or more. This means it does not apply to the University of South Carolina, which raised tuition by 6.9 percent. But it does apply to Clemson, which raised tuition by 7.5 percent.

So how is tuition connected to capital building projects?

Research & Commentary: The Problem with ‘Fat’ Taxes

October 6, 2010

States are increasingly looking to soda, candy, and other so-called “fat” taxes as a way to shore up their budgets.

Higher Education in South Carolina: Cut Administrative Costs and Focus on Student Performance

Simon Wong
September 28, 2010

While South Carolinians can take pride in our state’s higher educational system, costs and tuition have skyrocketed in recent years, even as graduation rates remain below 40 percent. At the same time, South Carolina’s leading universities have been drawn away from their core mission and increasingly become conduits for the Legislature’s economic development plans. The solution is to refocus on student performance, cut administrative costs and look to innovative technology that will improve both access and affordability.

Research & Commentary: Capital Gains Taxes

August 30, 2010

The current capital gains tax rate of 15 percent is set to increase substantially at the end of the year as the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts sunset.