This week at Third and State, we blogged about the Pennsylvania Senate's passage of a budget, movement on a bill to legalize predatory payday lending in the state, a big rally at the state Capitol, analysis of the April jobs report, and much more.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
On the state budget, Sharon Ward wrote about the Senate's passage of a state budget bill this week that improves upon the Governor's budget but still makes deep cuts to education and health services. Earlier in the week, she had a blog post on the Senate budget when details first emerged. Chris Lilienthal highlighted a Monday rally at the Capitol that brought 700 Pennsylvanians to Harrisburg to call on lawmakers and the Governor to save the General Assistance program and restore cuts proposed to county services for children, the homeless and people with disabilities. Plus, Mark Price blogged about concerns that the state will not spend all the tax revenue it collects, creating a further drag on the economy.
On banking, Mark Price blogged about committee approval of a state House bill that would legalize predatory payday lending in Pennsylvania and what that would mean for the state's consumers and economy.
On jobs and the economy, Mark Price shared analysis of April's U.S. jobs report.
Finally, Mark Price had a roundup of news on the economic impact of state and federal budget cuts, the prospect of higher interest rates on student loans and the geography of manufacturing.
This week at Third and State, we blogged about a new revenue report from the Independent Fiscal Office offering a more upbeat view of the economy moving forward, and the likely impact of a state House-approved bill to reduce corporate taxes by nearly $1 billion by the end of the decade. We also posted Morning Must Reads on payday lending legislation and the economic cost of an asset test for Pennsylvanians in need of food assistance.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
On the state budget, Sharon Ward blogged about the Independent Fiscal Office's new report predicting a smaller revenue shortfall for the current year and more robust revenue collections for 2012-13. Mark Price also had analysis on the new revenue report, noting that state budget cuts have hurt job growth.
On tax policy, Chris Lilienthal wrote about the House's approval of a plan to reduce corporate taxes by nearly $1 billion by the end of the decade without any commitment from businesses to put Pennsylvanians back to work. Sharon Ward shared her Philadelphia Inquirerop-ed on this bill and a memo she sent to editors and reporters outlining her concerns with the bill.
Finally, Mark Price had Morning Must Reads on legislation in the state House to legalize payday loans charging upwards of 300% in annual percentage rates, and the lost economic activity from implementing an asset test for people receiving food stamps.
In the fall, Pennsylvania's economy looked a bit shaky. Unemployment was rising and leading indexes which predict future growth were signaling weak growth.
Today, the outlook is stronger: unemployment is falling, albeit slowly, and leading indexes (PDF) point to stronger growth over the next six months. Thus, it is no surprise that the Independent Fiscal Office has boosted its forecast for state tax revenue collections.
This week at Third and State, we blogged about state legislation that would cut corporate taxes by close to a billion dollars by the end of the decade, what inequality has to do with the funding of infrastructure, the Philadelphia Food Stamp Challenge, payday lenders eyeing a return to Pennsylvania, and more.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
On the state budget, Sharon Ward highlighted concerns about a state House bill that would cut corporate taxes by close to a billion dollars by the end of the decade.
On income inequality, Chris Lilienthal blogged about a recent op-ed connecting inequality with an underfunding of the nation's infrastructure. In Morning Must Reads on inequality, Mark Price shared a New York Times analysis on increasing income inequality in America and an editorial on the "festering problem" of exorbitant CEO pay.
On poverty and food assistance, Chris Lilienthal blogged about the Philadelphia Food Stamp Challenge going on this week and the importance of food assistance to Pennsylvania families struggling in this economy.
On the financial industry, Mark Price had a Morning Must Read highlighting news coverage of an effort by payday lenders to advance legislation in Pennsylvania allowing interest rates on short-term loans as high as 419%.
Finally, Mark Price had a Morning Must Read on rising mortgage foreclosures and an effort to provide better disclosure of fees for 401K plans.