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  • WebMemo posted May 13, 2009 by Shanea Watkins, Ph.D., Dan Lips D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program: Improving Student Safety

    Congress will soon hold hearings to consider the future of the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship program, the federal initiative that currently helps 1,700 low-income students attend private schools in Washington, D.C. After five years, federal policymakers have an opportunity to evaluate the evidence about this program's impact on the educational opportunities for…

  • WebMemo posted February 2, 2009 by Shanea Watkins, Ph.D., Guinevere Nell Stimulus Plan Should Include Pro-Growth Tax Relief for Families in Every State

    The stimulus plan scheduled for debate in the Senate should include: An extension of the 2001 and 2003 tax reductions; and A reduction of tax rates for individuals, small businesses, and corporations through 2013. According to a recent Heritage Foundation analysis,[1] including these elements in the stimulus plan would soften the current recession in…

  • WebMemo posted January 26, 2009 by Shanea Watkins, Ph.D., Patrick Tyrrell The Stimulus Bill: $825 Billion in Forgone Family Spending

    House Democrats have proposed $825 billion in stimulus spending (the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009) to be used to create jobs, protect workers, expand infrastructure, and provide aid to states. This money is being borrowed, meaning it will have to be repaid by either taxing it from future generations or borrowing even more funds. Many people…

  • WebMemo posted October 17, 2008 by Shanea Watkins, Ph.D. Job Creation from the Obama and McCain Tax Plans: A State-by-State Analysis

    A recent Heritage Foundation Center for Data Analysis report[1] describes the economic outcomes that can be expected based on the presidential candidates' proposed tax plans. The outcomes include the effects of these proposed policies on gross domestic product, disposable income, and employment growth over a 10-year period. The analysis finds that job growth under…

  • Backgrounder posted September 8, 2008 by Dan Lips, Shanea Watkins, Ph.D., John Fleming Does Spending More on Education Improve Academic Achievement?

    Debates about how to improve public Education in America often focus on whether government should spend more on education. Federal and state policymakers proposing new Education programs often base their arguments on the need to provide more resources to schools to improve opportunities for students. Many Americans seem to share this view. Polling data show…

  • Center for Data Analysis Report posted August 21, 2008 by Shanea Watkins, Ph.D., James Sherk Who Serves in the U.S. Military? The Demographics of Enlisted Troops and Officers

    Interactive U.S. map of troop representation levels Who serves in the active-duty ranks of the U.S. all-volunteer military? Conventional wisdom holds that military service disproportionately attracts minorities and men and women from disadvantaged backgrounds. Many believe that troops enlist because they have few options, not because they want to serve their…

  • WebMemo posted June 20, 2008 by Shanea Watkins, Ph.D. Safer Kids, Better Test Scores: The D.C. Voucher Program Works

    In January 2004, Congress passed the District of Columbia School Choice Incentive Act of 2003, the first federally funded school voucher program in the United States. Now known as the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program, this initiative provides scholarships of up to $7,500 to more than 1,900 low-income students in the District. A recent U.S. Department of Education…

  • WebMemo posted March 11, 2008 by Shanea Watkins, Ph.D. The House Budget Resolution: Tax Hikes Would Harm Economy,Taxpayers

    On March 5, the House Budget Committee passed its fiscal year 2009 budget resolution. If implemented, it would increase taxes significantly, thus decreasing job growth, reducing disposable income, and weakening the economy. This WebMemo projects the likely impact of the House budget resolution on the tax burden, jobs, and economic growth in states and…

  • WebMemo posted December 10, 2007 by William W. Beach, Shanea Watkins, Ph.D. Paying More at the Pump: Energy Bill Would Increase Gas Prices

    Congress is currently debating energy policy legislation that could result in significantly higher prices for gasoline consumers. A review of H.R. 6, including the just-completed section on tax changes, reveals that the bill could increase the price of regular unleaded gasoline from $3.06 per gallon (the early December national average) to $5.02 in 2016. The bill…

  • WebMemo posted June 18, 2007 by William W. Beach, Shanea Watkins, Ph.D. Senate Energy Bill Would Increase Gas Prices

    The Senate is currently debating energy policy legislation that could result in significantly higher prices for gasoline consumers. A review of S. 1419, including the just-completed section on tax changes, reveals that the bill could increase the price of regular unleaded gasoline from $3.14 per gallon (the early May national average) to $6.40 in 2016--a 104 percent…

  • Backgrounder posted May 7, 2007 by Shanea Watkins, Ph.D. Tax Increases Ahead: The Impact of the House Budget Resolution, ByCongressional District

    Click here to see the cost in your state and district On March 29, the House passed its fiscal year 2008 budget resolution. The House's budget, if imple­mented, could increase taxes significantly over the next five years, in turn decreasing job growth, reduc­ing personal income, and weakening the economy. This paper presents state-by-state…

  • Executive Summary posted April 4, 2007 by Robert Rector, Christine Kim, Shanea Watkins, Ph.D. Executive Summary: The Fiscal Cost of Low-Skill Households to theU.S. Taxpayer

    Each year, families and individuals pay taxes to the government and receive back a wide variety of services and benefits. When the benefits and services received by one group exceed the taxes paid, a distributional deficit occurs, and other groups must pay for the services and benefits of the group in deficit. Each year, government is involved in a large-scale…

  • Special Report posted April 4, 2007 by Robert Rector, Christine Kim, Shanea Watkins, Ph.D. The Fiscal Cost of Low-Skill Households to the U.S. Taxpayer

    Executive Summary Introduction Each year, families and individuals pay taxes to the government and receive back a wide variety of services and benefits. A fiscal deficit occurs when the benefits and services received by one group exceed the taxes paid. When such a deficit occurs, other groups must pay for the services and benefits of the group in deficit. Each…

  • Backgrounder posted September 1, 2006 by Shanea Watkins, Ph.D. Are Public or Private Schools Doing Better? How the NCES Study IsBeing Misinterpreted

    A recent study published by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) contains some surprising results based on a snapshot of student achievement data. According to the study, public school students are performing better than private school students in fourth grade mathematics and at the same level as pri­vate school students in fourth grade reading and…

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