In Case You Missed It

In Case You Missed It: A Dose of Reality on Shale-Related Employment, PA Jobs Update, and School Funding

Third and State is taking a break for the holiday. We will return on December 2. Happy Thanksgiving.

In recent weeks, we blogged about a new report on the jobs impact of natural gas drilling in the Marcellus and Utica Shale formation. We also had the latest on Pennsylvania jobs, a report on a day of action in support of expanding Medicaid, and a letter to the editor setting the record straight about school funding in Pennsylvania.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT AT THIRD AND STATE:

  • On the Marcellus Shale, Chris Lilienthal blogged about a new report finding that shale drilling in the six states spanning the Marcellus and Utica Shale has produced far fewer new jobs than the industry and its supporters claim. The report was the first released by the Multi-State Shale Research Collaborative — a group of research organizations, including the Keystone Research Center and Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center, tracking the impacts of shale drilling. Chris also highlighted other findings from the report: that shale drilling is highly sensitive to price fluctuations, and that since 2012 shale drilling has shifted from Pennsylvania to Ohio and other areas with growth in more lucrative shale oil production.
  • On jobs and the economy, Mark Price wrote that there was little good job news for Pennsylvania in the September and October employment reports released last week.
  • On education and the state budget, Sharon Ward shared her letter to the editor in The Patriot-News and PennLive.com setting the record straight about funding cuts to Pennsylvania schools in recent years.
  • And on health care, Chris Lilienthal highlighted a recent statewide day of action calling on Pennsylvania lawmakers to expand Medicaid health coverage in 2014 under the health reform law.

SHALE EMPLOYMENT REPORT

  • Drilling in the six states that span the Marcellus and Utica Shale formations has produced far fewer new jobs than the industry and its supporters claim. Read the new report or a press release on it from the Multi-State Shale Research Collaborative

WATCH PBPC'S LATEST WEBINAR

Watch the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center's latest webinar for a look at proven strategies to provide property tax relief to those who most need it — while protecting critical investments in public education.

In Case You Missed It: Tax Cuts Slow Revenue Growth, 'Bad Deal' Deregulation Bill, SNAP Cut, Transportation & More

In recent weeks, we blogged about how business tax cuts have dragged down revenue growth this year and will continue to do so in future budgets. We also wrote about the dangers of a Pennsylvania telephone deregulation bill, the impact of a cut to federal food assistance, how the 50 states stack up when it comes to employer-sponsored health insurance, transportation funding, Marcellus Shale-related employment, and more.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT AT THIRD AND STATE:

  • On state budget and taxes, Michael Wood wrote in the latest revenue tracker that General Fund collections are not keeping pace with the slowly growing economy, and much of this can be traced to corporate tax cuts. He also wrote about the Independent Fiscal Office's budget outlook predicting slow revenue growth in the next five years, another product of business tax cuts.
  • On utilities and regulation, Steve Herzenberg blogged about a new Keystone Research Center report finding that a telephone deregulation bill in the state House will hurt rural broadband access and increase phone rates for consumers.
  • On the federal nutrition assistance, Chris Lilienthal shared an interactive map of Pennsylvania showing that a $183 million cut to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) will impact families and children in every county.
  • On health care, Chris Lilienthal shared an interactive map of the United States showing how the 50 states stack up when it comes to employer-sponsored health insurance. With the nation’s employer-based health insurance system fraying rapidly in the past decade, the findings highlight just how important the Affordable Care Act is to many Americans.
  • On transportation funding, Sharon Ward highlighted her testimony before a House committee on how Pennsylvania could significantly increase its long-term investment in roads, bridges, and public transit with a mix of cash and debt financing.
  • On the Marcellus Shale, Mark Price shared an article setting the record straight about drilling-related employment claims made by Governor Tom Corbett's re-election campaign.
  • Finally, we shared the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center's latest webinar on the Governor's Healthy PA plan, Medicaid expansion, and the Health Insurance Marketplace.

LATEST FROM KEYSTONE RESEARCH CENTER (KRC):

KRC OP-EDS:

KRC IN THE NEWS:

LATEST FROM PENNSYLVANIA BUDGET AND POLICY CENTER (PBPC):

PBPC IN THE NEWS:

In Case You Missed It: Minimum Wage, Ohio Expands Medicaid, Shale Jobs, Property Taxes, and More

In recent weeks, we blogged about the jobs impact of raising the state's minimum wage, Ohio moving forward with the Medicaid expansion, industry claims about Marcellus Shale job growth in Pennsylvania, the problem with "one-size-fits-all" business rankings, what's at stake for schools in property tax elimination proposals, and more.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT AT THIRD AND STATE:

  • On the minimum wage, Steve Herzenberg wrote about the positive economic impacts of raising the minimum wage and a 2010 study that found "no adverse employment effects" from minimum wage increases in multiple states.
  • On health care, Chris Lilienthal blogged about Ohio moving forward with the expansion of Medicaid health coverage under the Affordable Care Act and that Pennsylvania should do the same.
  • On the Marcellus Shale and the economy, Steve Herzenberg broke down the latest industry claims about the impact shale drilling has had on Pennsylvania job growth.
  • On state tax issues, Michael Wood shared a recent news analysis that concluded "one-size-fits-all" business rankings, like those done by the Tax Foundation, are not put together with the states' best interests in mind.
  • On higher education, Steve Herzenberg outlined how we can avoid a future in which a majority of higher education faculty earn less than a quality wage.
  • Finally, Chris Lilienthal share this whiteboard video explaining that the future of Pennsylvania schools — and the quality of education every child receives — is at stake in the debate over a property tax elimination proposal.

LATEST FROM PENNSYLVANIA BUDGET AND POLICY CENTER (PBPC):

PBPC IN THE NEWS:

LATEST FROM KEYSTONE RESEARCH CENTER:

KRC IN THE NEWS:

In Case Your Missed It: Education Funding, Property Tax Elimination, Economy-Boosting Jobs, and More

In recent weeks, we blogged about what's at stake for Pennsylvania schools in the debate over property taxes in Harrisburg, the call for an education funding formula, the value of economy-boosting jobs, and details of the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center's fall webinar series.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT AT THIRD AND STATE:

  • On property taxes, Michael Wood wrote about an analysis from the Independent Fiscal Office finding that a proposal to eliminate property taxes would leave school districts with $2.6 billion less in overall funding within five years. Mike also wrote about some funding uncertainty surrounding the property tax proposal.
  • On unions and the economy, Steve Herzenberg shared a recent radio interview in which he made the case that when unions are strong, the economy is strong.
  • On education funding, Chris Lilienthal highlighted a recent symposium on school funding where experts discussed the impact of nearly a billion dollars in state funding cuts to schools two years ago and the need for an education funding formula.
  • On the economy, Chris Lilienthal shared a video from Topos Partnerships showing the value of economy-boosting jobs — jobs that pay workers enough to maintain the basic spending levels that keep the economy and our communities going.
  • Finally, we announced the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center's fall webinar series lineup, including presentations on property taxes, the Affordable Care Act, Marcellus Shale jobs, and what we can do to restore needed education funding.

LATEST FROM PENNSYLVANIA BUDGET AND POLICY CENTER:

LATEST FROM KEYSTONE RESEARCH CENTER:

In Case You Missed It: The Shutdown and PA's Economy, Health Marketplaces, Property Taxes & More

In recent weeks, we blogged about the impact of the federal government shutdown on Pennsylvania's economy, the opening of the Health Insurance Marketplace, property tax bills with significant implications for school funding, a high-road restaurant owner's take on the minimum wage, Marcellus Shale-related employment, and the latest state revenue report.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:

  • On federal policy and the economy, Mark Price blogged that a prolonged federal government shutdown will harm the Pennsylvania economy and that it should be a top priority of the state's congressional delegation to pass a continuing resolution to fund the federal government before lasting damage is done.
  • On health care, Chris Lilienthal wrote about the opening of the Health Insurance Marketplace — the latest provision of the Affordable Care Act to take effect — and in the words of a Lancaster teacher "how life changing this will be for people who thought they would die without health insurance."
  • On property taxes and education funding, Michael Wood previewed property tax-shift bills moving through the House and wrote about one bill that won approval in the House last week. Sharon Ward blogged about how legislation to completely eliminate property taxes would threaten long-term public school funding. Chris Lilienthal wrote about a recent Capitol event that brought parents and other Pennsylvanians together to fight for more school funding and a fair distribution of those funds.
  • On the minimum wage, Stephen Herzenberg wrote about a high-road restaurant owner who is advocating for an increase in the minimum wage and the minimum wage paid to tipped workers.
  • On the Marcellus Shale, Mark Price blogged that shale-related employment fell in Pennsylvania in the most recent year.
  • And on state budget and taxes, Michael Wood wrote about a report showing that Pennsylvania General Fund revenue collections are on track a quarter way through the 2013-14 fiscal year.

IN OTHER NEWS:

  • The Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center (PBPC) has resources on what the Affordable Care Act means for Pennsylvania and a summary of Governor Corbett's "Healthy PA" plan, which takes the federal option to expand Medicaid health coverage under the health reform law and proposes other changes to the state's Medicaid program.
  • PBPC's latest chartbook shows state tax rates would have to more than double to replace local property tax dollars that support schools.
  • The Keystone Research Center released a pension primer examining a new three-pronged proposal released by Representative Glen Grell, including a new cash balance plan for future public employees. Read a press release on the report and a memo to editorial writers.
  • Read PBPC's press release on the September 30 Capitol event highlighting the opening of the Health Insurance Marketplace and watch the highlights below.

Third and State Recap: Census Data on Health Insurance, Income Gaps Widening, Governor's Medicaid Plan, and More

Note: Third and State's In-Case-You-Missed-It Wrap Up is now published every two weeks.

Over the past two weeks, we blogged about the Governor's Medicaid plan, new U.S. Census data on health insurance coverage in Pennsylvania, new figures on growing income inequality in the U.S., what a fast-food worker raise really costs, how Pennsylvania's job growth is measuring up, and much more.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:

  • On health care, Sharon Ward blogged that U.S. Census data out this week show that Pennsylvania's health insurance coverage rates are still below pre-recession levels — a reminder that Pennsylvania needs an expansion of Medicaid now more than ever. Chris Lilienthal provided an initial take of Governor Corbett's "Healthy PA" Medicaid plan and set the record straight about the cost of the state's existing Medicaid program. He also shared a Philadelphia Inquirer editorial saying that Medicaid expansion in Pennsylvania cannot wait and must happen in 2014.
  • On income inequality, Stephen Herzenberg shared an analysis putting the latest figures on U.S. income in historical perspective and argued that a 35-year trend of "growing apart" cannot become the new normal. Chris Lilienthal shared a Philadelphia Daily News story highlighting new data showing a shocking rise in income inequality since 2009.
  • On wages, Steve Herzenberg cited analysis showing that increasing the wages of fast food workers to $15 per hour would likely add only about 20 cents to the $4 cost of a Big Mac.
  • On job growth, Mark Price blogged about how job growth in Pennsylvania has measured up in the economic recovery. Mark also took the state secretary of Labor and Industry to task for citing selective statistics in a letter to the Patriot-News to claim that the Pennsylvania economy is “strong.”
  • And on public benefits, Chris Lilienthal shared a letter to the editor explaining how public benefits encourage low-income people to go to work and keep at it.

IN OTHER NEWS:

  • The Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center recently redesigned its web site with a new look and easier navigation so that you can find everything you need right at your fingertips.
  • Read the Keystone Research Center's new policy brief, Nickel and Dimed: The Falling Purchasing Power of the Tipped Minimum Wage, and a press release on it.
  • Read PBPC Director Sharon Ward's September 9 testimony before the Pennsylvania House Democratic Policy Committee on the impact of state cuts to school funding and how best to address property tax reform.

Third and State Recap: The Rise of Low-Paying Jobs, State of Working PA, What You Should Earn, Revenue Update, & More

Over the past two weeks, we blogged about the latest U.S. jobs report, the State of Working Pennsylvania, why low-paying jobs in hotels and restaurants are on the rise across the commonwealth, what you should be earning, state revenue collections, and more.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:

  • On jobs and the economy, Mark Price highlighted the key takeaways from the latest U.S. jobs report and explained why low-paying jobs in hotels and restaurants are making up such a large share of job growth in Pennsylvania in recent years. Chris Lilienthal blogged about the Keystone Research Center's latest State of Working PA report and shared an online tool from the Economic Policy Institute showing how much you would be making if wages had kept pace with productivity in the economy.
  • On state tax and budget issues, Michael Wood blogged that revenue collections appear to be on track two months into Pennsylvania's new fiscal year.
  • And on income inequality, Steve Herzenberg wrote the speech he wished President Obama would have given on the 50th Anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech in Washington.

IN OTHER NEWS:

Third and State Recap: Invest in Education, Flawed Study on Welfare, Facts About Nutrition Assistance, and More

Over the past two weeks, we wrote about a new study on the strong link between the educational attainment of a state’s workforce and both productivity and workers’ pay. We also responded to a flawed study on work and public welfare, separated fact from fiction on nutrition assistance, and weighed in further on a study about social mobility.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:

  • On education and the workforce, Stephen Herzenberg blogged about a new study finding that states with higher educational attainment enjoy higher productivity growth and higher increases in pay for typical workers. "It's invest in education, stupid," Steve writes, paraphrasing James Carville's famous quote.
  • On public welfare and health care, Sharon Ward responded to a Cato Institute study, explaining how flawed the study's methodology is and how out of touch with reality its conclusions are on the economic state of households receiving public benefits.
  • On the federal budget, Chris Lilienthal shared a short video separating fact from fiction in the ongoing debate over nutrition assistance for low-income Americans.
  • On jobs and the economy, Stephen Herzenberg asked whether the Right can afford to acknowledge low upward mobility in the U.S.?
  • And on privatization, Stephen Herzenberg shared video of his weekend appearance on PA Newsmakers debating the wisdom of privatizing the state's wine and spirit stores.

IN OTHER NEWS:

  • Read more about the study on educational attainment and a strong economy in a press release from the Keystone Research Center.

A LOOK AHEAD:

  • With Labor Day fast approaching, look next week for the Keystone Research Center's State of Working PA, an annual review of how working Pennsylvanians and their families are faring in today’s economy. You will find it at Keystone's State of Working PA web page.

Third and State This Week: Health Law Saves Consumers, Upward Social Mobility, & More on State Revenue Outlook

This week at Third and State, we blogged about a key provision of the Affordable Care Act that ensures health insurance companies spend most premium dollars on direct medical care, shared an op-ed on what works when it come to upward social mobility, and provided more analysis on the state's revenue outlook for 2013-14.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:

  • On health care, Chris Lilienthal wrote about a key reform in the Affordable Care Act that requires health insurance companies to spend 80% to 85% of premium dollars on direct medical care or issue rebates to consumers.
  • On jobs and wages, Stephen Herzenberg shared his PennLive.com op-ed on a new report providing the most detailed information yet on what works — and what doesn’t — when it comes to keeping the American Dream alive.
  • On state budget and taxes, Michael Wood filed two blog posts about the official state revenue estimates for 2013-14 --  the first looking at why corporate tax collections are projected to decline, and the second examining what's expected with personal income and sales tax collections.

IN OTHER NEWS:

In recent weeks, the Keystone Research Center and Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center have released the following publications:

  • The Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center published an analysis of the 2013-14 General Fund official revenue estimates, a briefing paper on how Pennsylvania's Marcellus Shale impact fee comes up well short of natural gas severance taxes in Texas and West Virginia, and a press release on the pending cut to federal nutrition assistance.
  • The Keystone Research Center published a briefing paper and press release about a new landmark study showing that Pennsylvania enjoys substantially more upward mobility than many other parts of the United States.

IN THE MEDIA:

The staff and research of the Keystone Research Center and Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center were featured in the following news reports and radio interviews in recent weeks:

Third and State This Week: Nutrition Assistance Cuts, Fast Food Worker Strikes, Modest State Revenue Growth & More

This week at Third and State, we blogged about a pending cut and other threats to federal nutrition assistance, what the one-day strikes by fast food workers tell us about the future of the middle class, a post-recession pay cut for the nation's low-wage workers, state revenue growth in the year ahead, and the role of public safety net programs in keeping people out of poverty.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:

  • On food insecurity, Chris Lilienthal blogged about a report on the significant impact that a pending cut in nutrition assistance will have on low-income families across Pennsylvania and the nation. He also shared a New York Times report on a new study finding that additional cuts proposed by the U.S. House would cost more than 5 million Americans needed food assistance.
  • On unions and the economy, Stephen Herzenberg wrote that the fast food workers engaging in one-day strikes across the country may be on the verge of cracking the code to the next U.S. middle class.
  • On income inequality, intern Ellis Wazeter blogged about a recent study showing that low-wage American workers have taken a post-recession hit to their paychecks.
  • On state taxes, Michael Wood shared a chart showing that General Fund revenue collections are projected to grow very little in the 2013-14 fiscal year.
  • And on poverty, Chris Lilienthal passed on a blog post by Arloc Sherman of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities highlighting just how much public safety net programs have helped keep people out of poverty in the United States.

IN OTHER NEWS:

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